Student Suicides - Suicide Variables - Suicide not Universal - A Historical Note on Irony and Suicide - Attitudes Toward Suicide - The Old Testiment - New Testiment and Suicide
Suicide cleanup has no history, but there's plenty of history for suicide. Here I share some suicide notes while keeping in mind that suicide cleanup has been with us for just as long as suicide.
In the meantime we might consider that I'm starting a history for suicide cleanup. History will be found between the lines of what I write here and elsewhere about suicide cleanup.
First, it might help to put some perspective into suicide's nature in our United States. Readers may want to know that between the years of 1990 to 1999 more than 300,000 people in the United States committed suicide. An estimated 8 million worldwide died by suicide during the same period of time.
Suicide accounts for more deaths than both homicide and needs related diseases in United States. Suicide accounts for more deaths than the wars around the world. And that's saying something. Suicide is the leading cause of death in China.
A striking fact arises when we consider that United States students have a fairly high risk for suicide. At least 20% of our students consider suicide. About 10% of our students admit to having made an attempt at suicide.
When we look at the numbers for suicide we come up with something like 11 out of every 100,000 commit suicide. But before we consider these numbers too seriously, keep in mind that this is just an average for our country as a whole. Nevada, for example, has nearly twice the average with a whopping 22 out of every 100,000 suicides. Today's suicide cleanup in Nevada creates good income for county coroner or medical examiner employees. I don't know if people arrive in Nevada to commit suicide after losing their family wealth in a casinos. This idea seems to make sense.
Incidentally, although I have fair suicide cleanup advertising on Nevada's Internet, I do little suicide cleanup in Nevada.
Here are some variables involved with suicide and keep in mind there are many others. These will help us begin to get a handle on this individual social tragedy.
- There are gender differences in suicide
- There are suicide bombers
- There is ethnicity and suicide
- Tthere are mass suicide
- There are different types of suicide
- There is suicide by cop
- There are specific jobs that lead to suicide too frequently
- There is murder-suicide
- There is school violence and suicide
- There is suicide to end pain and suffuring
- There is suicide to end shame and guilt
- There is suicide to end depression
So here we have a handful of issues related to suicide. Looking to a history of suicide we begin with suicide as an integral part of human history since recorded time.
The term suicideCame to us recently while self-murder in various languages served the purpose of getting this idea of suicide across.
There's a record that in 1662 this term arose when Edward Phillips claimed that this term, suicide, had a terrible sound as well as connotation: "a barbarous work, more appropriately derived from sus, a sow, and from the pronoun sue, as if it were a swinish part of a man to kill himself."So Phillips is comparing suicidal behavior with behavior of the eggs. Needless to say he was not an advocate of suicide.
In according to the Oxford English dictionary this term was used in derived from the Latin word she was sitting on. As a matter of combining the Latin pronoun for "sell" and the verb "to kill." So the word has some academic history.
Some people thought long ago that suicide was part of being in civilization and had no place in Hunter and gathering societies. But we find that many tribal peoples and practice suicide. Even the North and South American Indian, Native Americans, were found to have committed suicide. The better ones, the Melanesians, the Indians, the caucuses, and even Micronesia had a history of suicide.
Of course were all familiar with stories about Eskimos and altruistic suicide. It turns out these days that suicide has spiked among young Eskimo students. They still alone, they feel alienated, they feel depressed, and they feel that they have no purpose in life. Now that they are part of the European model of civilization they no longer have their tribal leaders and significant male role models to help them learn a trade, like hunting for their survival. So where the Eskimos practice altruistic suicide at one time now they practice suicide out of very selfish reasons, water and forms of alienation and depression.
Suicide not Universal
Keep in mind that suicide is not universal. Although rare, there are places in where suicide just does not occur. At least, suicide remained absent until moderinity arrived with both suicide and suicide cleanup gougers.
Those readers unfamiliar with Charles Darwin and Captain Fitzroy's experiences with Tierra del Fuego will find it interesting that Tierra del Fuegans did not commit suicide. This is a striking fact when we consider that Tierra del Fuego's residents had little more than animal skin to wear in their cold and wet climate. So ironically, they had no use for suicide cleanup, either.
These gatherers of shell-fish lived upon the rocks along the Pacific Ocean's coast way down in Patagonia, Argintina; that is, they lived in that which one day became Argintina as if by hockus pokus. The word scarcity has a true meaning in the context of their lives. They lived beyond any modern conception of poverty.
They lived under the stars neither thinking about nor commiting suicide. Suicide cleanup would never come to mind. Neither were in their language or thoughts. I compare their ignorance of suicide and suicide cleanup to our modern day society. Our United States has about 30,000 or so suicides a year. This translates to over 20,000 suicide cleanup per year, most likely. So we know of a society without suicide, suicide cleanup, or shoes. We do know that our richest society, ever, with suicide by wealthy celebrities, knows too well about suicide cleanup. Ironic.
A Historical Note on Irony and Suicide
Here's a note about suicide and the meeting of the "civilized" explorers of our modernized world. Note Tierra del Fuegans -- "savages."
Captain Fitzroy removed three Tierra del Fuegans from their island to England. These kidnapped victims became Fitzroy's way of creating civilization and religion among native people.
His victims were taught English while learning to dress as English people. They learned to sit at dining tables and use eating implements as the British. They were taught religion. Fitzroy believed these native people would become role models in their homeland. Sadly, one of his experimental subjects died while in England. Could Fitzroy have succeeded at positing a civilized Adam and Even in their Eden?
Fitzroy then returnd these Tierra del Fuego to their homeland as if to jumpstart a new Brithish society. He believed their new way of life and Brithish ideology would benefit their people. Fitzroy had done his part for sharing Jesus Christ with humanity. His anthropological manipulation would show how two "civilized" subjects would teach others. Naturally enough, once back home they quickly threw off their clothing and shoes. We will assume they did the same with their ideological training.
Now here's the irony. Tierra del Fuegans neither had words or ideas for suicide, nor did they commit suicide. Ironically, our well meaning and devout Fitzroy would kill himself later in life. Suicide had a familiar place among the civilized Brithish. Now, we ask, just what do we need to know about this term "civilized." How is it that suicide claims so many worldwide with a few pockets of suicide free living and never needing suicide cleanup?
I write not to disparage Captain Fitzroy, but to show suicide's many sides. He was a good man and acting in good faith. Fitzroy would spend a small fortune of his own to extend his Queen's knowledge of foreign lands and their inhabitants. He was keen on having a natural historian aboard the Beagle. It happened that he could not predict Charles Darwin's commitment to understanding the origin of and modification of species.
Fitzroy was, if nothing else, among England's best at what he did and what he believed.
Attitudes Toward Suicide
Our attitudes toward suicide change with time as different sources of social control appear on the horizon. For those societies with a strong prohibition toward suicide we find that they had a strong belief in magic and superstition. For them suicides were horrific and antagonistic toward their Godhead. Totem poles with taboos etched into their wooden forms were used to dispel evils that followed suicides.
Usually we find social and individual suicide were the two forms of this deviant behavior. We still find socialized suicide today. This I'll take up later. Individual suicide has occurred throughout history as a social remedy to an individual's failure for compliance with rules and standards. Suicide occurs as a way of expressing anger and revenge for many; suicide cleanup verifies this idea.
The Old Testiment
Individual suicides of in the past served as a way of escaping from personal disgrace or falling into the hands of an enemy. The Old Testament tells us of a few suicides that occurred in this same vein. Neither condoning nor objecting, the Old Testament serves as a conduit for this deviant behavior. I mean we learn of suicide from the "word of God."
We read that a woman crushed Abimdleca's skull by dropping a stone from above in defense of her home. Abimdlea ordered his soldier servant to end his life so as to save him from the shame of dying at the hand's of a woman. So we find patriarch strongly embossed upon suicide early on in our history.
And then there's Sampson whose long hair gave him great strength. Because caused a Philistine temple to collapse when he pulled the pillars out from under the building. (Judges 16:28 – 31). Then there's Absalom in the revolt against King David. We are told in II 17:23 Samuel that Absalom had led Ahitopel to military defeat. Ahitophel commited suicide as a result.
New Testiment and Suicide
Some writers suggest that Jesus Christ committed suicide by placing himself at great risk of death. If we accept that Jesus Christ committed suicide, then we will accept that suicide cleanup has a devine origin in biblical terms; for the mother of this walking God and others were first historically shown to take part in suicide cleanup.
Socratese we know committed suicide rather than give others cause to condemn the State for sentencing him to death. Whether or not we classify Jesus Christ as a suicide for his suicidal risk taking, we do know that one of his own committed suicide.
Eddie Evans, biohazard cleanup
copyright 2003 eddie evans