In a stunning admission, top officials at the Veterans Health Administration confirmed that the agency’s own statistics show that an average of 126 veterans per week -- 6,552 veterans per year -- commit suicide, according to an internal email distributed to several VA officials.
Tragedy. I was listening to Amy Goodman on the radio today, and she was interviewing another author/correspondent, and he mentioned this statistic. He continued speaking and Amy said (and I'm paraphrasing here) "Wait, what? Let me stop you for a moment, did you just say 18 a day?!" He explained that yes, 18 a day, and that there was an internal memo at the VA, with the subject line "SHHH!" It said, in essence, not to allow the "press" to know of this statistic.
I'm fried, and I have to do a lot of schoolwork, and I JUST got back from LI (drove down this morning, interviewed an aide, set up two bed frames and beds, moved some stuff around, etc, then drove back. Been on the road for six or seven hours today, all told) I wanted to mention this though, because it's terrible, and it's Veterans Day, and while I want to honor those that choose to serve, I also want to point out that we need to provide support to those unfortunate enough to see combat.