Many of those commenting on my May 25 Op-Ed, which called for a suicide barrier on the Golden Gate Bridge, seem to believe that people should be allowed to kill themselves without any preventative measures. That astounds me.
"SFJay09" put it this way: "People who want to kill themselves will find a way.... These people are just speaking their minds." And "meshele01" said this: "Enough with bubble-wrapping the world to prevent boo-boos."
How is it possible to be so uncaring?
If someone you love -- a spouse, parent, sibling, child or close friend -- wants to die, doesn’t have a fatal illness and can be saved, why wouldn’t you want to save them? Why wouldn’t you want to give people another chance at life?
Facts do not back up the "just let them jump" contingent.
According to a study done in the last decade by the Harvard School of Public Health, 90% of people who survive a suicide attempt don’t go on to kill themselves. Many, in fact, end up leading lives that are happy, healthy and productive. And had the commenters read all the way through my Op-Ed, they would have found a reference to a 1978 University of California study of 515 people who were stopped from jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge; 25 years later, 94% were still alive or had died by means other than suicide. Suicide is not inevitable.