It’s Monday morning, and I’ve been scrolling Google News to see what’s hot to write about this week. It’s been super boring since the end of the election, but I saw an article today that made my jaw drop. 

CNN, “Fort Lauderdale shooting suspect faces possible death penalty.” Wow, way to go CNN, no one ever would have guessed that a deranged gunman who killed five people and injured more could possibly receive the death penalty.

This whole situation is sad no matter how you look at it. People lost their lives due to senseless violence that alone is a travesty, but the shooter’s back story reiterates my belief that mental health is not treated as an important issue in the U.S. 

This guy was a veteran, he served in Iraq and was also in the Reserves for like 10 years. Family members said that Santiago was not the same when he came back from Iraq, whether he had PTSD or a schizophrenic break is probably unknown seeing as he never got proper mental health care afterward.

So this guy has increasingly erratic behavior, and people start noticing. I mean Santiago himself even started noticing, so he went to the FBI in Alaska. He told the FBI he was having terroristic thoughts and urges and that he was being mind controlled by ISIS or some crazy mess. 

So what does the FBI do? They take away his pistol and subject him to a mental health evaluation. His evaluation deemed him fine, and the gun was returned to Santiago. This is the same gun and case that Santiago checked as his only bag on his flight to Ft. Lauderdale with which he later used to kill innocent people.

So, the FBI says that this guy slipped through the cracks. 

Oopsies, mistakes happen! 

You can’t always trust people who say their mind has been infiltrated by ISIS because you know some people only want attention. Why didn’t this guy get help after his Iraq tour? Why did it even get this far, I don’t understand. 

I’m not sure what it’s going to take for mental health to be taken more seriously in this country, and that’s terrifying.