During the first session of Grand Rapids Community College’s symposium on gun violence in America, Frank Connor, director of the GRCC Psychology Department, spoke on the mental health issues surrounding the perpetrators of mass shootings.
“They often times have a history of suicide or suicide ideation,” Connor said, pointing to the intention of the attacker in most shootings. “What they’re actually doing is suicide by hostile intent.”
Connor built a case for mental health awareness as individuals and as a culture.
“We need to create inclusive places for everybody, starting with schools,” Connor said. “Not everybody has a great family life, but you can supplement a dysfunctional family life with caring friends.”
The symposium continues 7 p.m.-9 p.m. today in room 108 of Sneden Hall, located at 415 Fulton St. East in Grand Rapids, with a focus on the economic and cultural aspects of gun violence.