Suicide Isn’t Painless

Reading the arguments against building a suicide barrier on the Aurora bridge, I’m struck by just how little people take into account the public health issues at stake. People can be very callous about the jumpers (“If we build a barrier, they’ll just go jump somewhere else!”), but they’re almost totally ignorant of the effect on the people down below.

Many people who live and work in the neighborhood around there get traumatized by all the dropping bodies. The P-I had a story recently about a kayaker who tried to help someone who went in the water and the jumper was so scared he grabbed onto the kayak and nearly drowned them both. It’s a real public health problem, and not just for those who choose to jump.