Mental Health In America

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America is branding people like cattle. No, this is not a physical mark seared onto skin by the government, but it is still an invisible mark on our own people that sets them apart and makes the government recognize people based on differences instead of recognizing the similarities that can bring us together. Mental illness has been branded as one of these differences. Yet, mental illness is simply “a condition that impacts a person's thinking, feeling or mood and may affect his or her ability to relate to others and function on a daily basis” including depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, schizophrenia, and autism as some of these conditions (Conditions 1). Therefore, the American government must break the stigma of mental illness and…show more content…
Currently, the American mental health system is disorganized with “eleven major Federal departments and agencies sharing the task of administering 135 programs for the mentally disabled” (Sanity 4). There is no process that is streamlined and efficient or compassionate because the federal government cannot create that system; the federal government has too broad of a scope to both treat mental illness and shift the social attitudes of the structure. In 1963, Kennedy’s plan for mental health was put in effect to shift power from the state and to the federal government. Even in 1984, it was seen as a failure by the chief architect of the federal program. He said, “The result is not what we intended, and perhaps we didn’t ask the questions that should have been asked when developing a new concept but…we tried our damnedest” (Release 1). Therefore, local governments need to be given the power by the federal government to independently run mental health services. In a similar way to 1963, the president needs to propose a plan to once again shift the power of mental health. With this proposal, it can easily be passed by Congress as it eases the burden of them having to handle the issue. Also, the proposal will have no additional expenditures to the government as the local governments will be more effectively using the money already budgeted, not using more. Both conservatives and liberals can agree because the system financially doesn’t change, but the system yields vast improvements. These local government and mental health care services are given no new tasks, but the power given to them makes the success of breaking down stigmas and allow the local area to care for its people again. It is thus clear that the federal government power over mental illness needs to be placed in the hands of local
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