Following the elementary school shooting in Uvalda, social media has been flooded with theories (why mass shootings happen) based on access to guns, mental health, parenting, and even God.

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I haven't always been able to reach across the aisle to see someone else's point of view, but if I expect others to do so, then I need to do better.

One of those ways was to understand the mental health argument of mass shootings.

You know exactly what I'm talking about. When a mass shooting happens, one side screams it's a mental health issue and the other side calls it a gun issue.

Personally, I feel it's a mental health issue AND access to guns issue. By the way, I'm a proud gun owner. 

So I started googling and came across some statistics that may actually validate the mental health part of the argument. I say "part of the argument" because I don't feel there's one simple solution.

Did you know that Texas ranks dead last among all states for access to mental health care?

According to Mental Health America, Texas ranks 51st (including Washington D.C.) among all states for access to mental health care.


By today's standards, we should receive a nice and shiny participation trophy.

The website included a variety of factors to base its findings:

The Access Ranking indicates how much access to mental health care exists within a state. The access measures include access to insurance, access to treatment, quality and cost of insurance, access to special education, and workforce availability. [Mental Health America]

When you couple the fact that over 21% of Texans with mental health issues remain uninsured with the fact that Texas cut over $200 million from the very department that oversees mental health programs, then it all becomes clearer.

Mental health is indeed an issue, not just for mass murderers but all Texans yet our state government cut funding to address that very issue.

I don't know about you, but I'm done with "thoughts and prayers". It's time to get pissed off. It's time to scream. It's time to make noise. It's time we did something about this instead of just listening to politicians regurgitate the same talking points while doing absolutely nothing.

Experiencing a mental health emergency? Please contact:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Dial 800-273-8255 (800-273-TALK)
Veterans Crisis Line: Dial 800-273-8255, option 1
24/7 Crisis Text Line: Text TX to 741741
Texas 2-1-1: Dial 2-1-1, option 8

Cliche Disclaimer: The thoughts and views of Frank Pain are not necessarily representative of Rock 108, Townsquare Media, and its affiliates.

One way I'm able to "clear my head" is by getting back to nature and these parks are a great place to start.

10 Majestic State and National Parks of Texas

These are some of the highest-rated, by visitors, state and national parks in Texas.

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