So what exactly do we get for the billions we already pay for mental health services today? And what will we get if we continue to approve billions more in the near future to cover psychiatric and psychological intervention in the lives of people affected by the recent terrorist attacks on America and in future tragedies?

As Tana Dineen stated, "Do you ever wonder when we began to accept as fact that we can't cope with death or violence without the services of a therapist? Or why we decided that a stranger with a graduate degree in psychology is better equipped than anyone else we know to help us 'properly' deal with and 'heal' from a shocking or violent incident?"

Richard Gist, a psychologist who assists the fire department in Kansas City, states, "Mental health professionals sometimes undermine the traditional sources of support for those experiencing grief: talking to friends, family, clergy and others." "Maybe what we need to do is give people tea and sympathy and let them talk to their Aunt Tilly. But we should not try to dress Aunt Tilly in a white lab coat and have her talk in psychobabble."67

There is no comparison between the funded mechanisms of a sterile and ineffective mental health system, and the truly caring compassion, understanding, support and spiritual boost that comes from one's family, friends, the clergy and other concerned citizens. These inherent and positive qualities in our communities should be our main focus as we recover from recent events, not the reinforcing and expanding of already incompetent psychiatric or psychological systems.

The Citizens Commission on Human Rights International