VP Biden: Mental Health Checks Could Have Stopped Vir. Tech Shooting


After a discussion on gun control at an event in Richmond, Virginia, Vice President Joe Biden claimed that better mental health checks could have stopped the shooting on the Virginia Tech campus in 2007.

Biden said that he and those he consulted during the recent gun banning commission he chaired which was completed in mid January had reached a “pretty broad consensus” of policy recommendations that would include “mental capacity” to determine who would be allowed to purchase guns in the future.

“One of the problems that was pointed out here was that there was an adjudication of the young man that committed the crime at Virginia Tech, and yet he was able to go out and purchase two weapons,” the Vice President said.

In 2007 Seung-Hui Cho, a student at the university, killed 32 at the Blacksburg, VA campus. Cho used two handguns that he had purchased legally. The killer, though, had a history of mental health issues that apparently didn’t come up in his background checks when he purchased the weapons.

Improved screening for mental health issues is one of the areas that many on both sides of the gun control issue support. Even the NRA has advocated stronger mental health screening not to mention improving mental health services in general.

Recently the NRA announced support for legislation that would ensure that appropriate records for those judged mentally incompetent or had been voluntarily committed would mental health institutions to be made available for use in firearms transfer background checks.

But the NRA has also warned of overbroad mental health disqualifiers that might unduly affect our military veterans.

One might note that better mental health checks could have prevented us being saddled with Joe Biden, too.

Warner Todd Huston

Warner Todd Huston

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer, has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and is featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart's BigGovernment.com, RightWingNews.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com , TheRealityCheck.org, RedState.com, Human Events Magazine, AmericanDailyReview.com, and the New Media Journal, among many, many others. Additionally, he has been a frequent guest on talk-radio programs to discuss his opinion editorials and current events and is currently the co-host of "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Conservatism" heard on BlogTalkRadio. Warner is also the editor of the Cook County Page for RedCounty.com. He has also written for several history magazines and appears in the new book "Americans on Politics, Policy and Pop Culture" which can be purchased on amazon.com. He is also the owner and operator of PubliusForum.com. Feel free to contact him with any comments or questions : EMAIL Warner Todd Huston

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