Part 1 Suicides and society... What ails us?
Bottom Line: Friday brought about another high-profile suicide – Anthony Bourdain. This just days after another high-profile suicide, Kate Spade. The music industry was ravaged by high profile suicides last year. But while the big names garner extra attention – it's symptomatic of something much bigger in our society. On Thursday the CDC released research depicting the near 30% increase in suicides in the US since 1999. 30%! That doesn't just happen. On Friday's Mark Levin show, as I was filling in, I walked back the timeline to address the potential premise of what's changed in our society. The implementation of the Department of Education in 1980 – the removal of God and related values from our classrooms and society more generally and related it to the timing of the proliferation of violence in our schools as well. While the CDC shows a spike in suicides since 1999 – what else happened in 1999? Columbine, right? Ushering in the new-era of ultimate violence and evil in our schools.
In 1999 it wasn't evident that Columbine wasn't a one-off. Without unfortunate hindsight we know it wasn't just a one-off evil act by two disturbed students. It was the beginning of a trend. They were the first generation of students to have come up through our schools as they were changing under the Department of Education. As I've cited previously, not only were we 2nd in education outcomes world-wide in 1980 and have fallen to 17th, as still sliding, most recently – the values that've been removed from the classroom likely play a role in what we've experience with the proliferation of violence in our schools as well. It's not complicated. Even an atheist benefits from morality in our society. The absence of morality is immorality. It's inarguable that those who're less likely to believe in God are more likely to commit crime and engage in violence against others or themselves. Every accredited study ever conducted has demonstrated the connection between the two. In fact, according to the American Journal of Psychiatry 's largest study on the subject of suicide: Subjects with no religious affiliation were more often lifetime suicide attempters, reported more suicidal ideation, and were more likely to have first-degree relatives who had committed suicide than religiously affiliated subjects.
The religiously affiliated and unaffiliated subjects did not differ in terms of gender, race, education, or income. Religiously unaffiliated subjects were younger, less often married, and less often had children. Religiously affiliated subjects reported a more family-oriented social network, reflected in more time spent with first-degree relatives.
Tomorrow, in part two, I'll bring you the numbers that tie suicide rates, school violence and the lack of morality together.