What's Killing America's White Men?

Submitted by: LordJim 1 month ago in News & Politics
A heartbreaking report by the BBC on the rising suicide rate among White, middle-aged, American men.

There are 27 comments:
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Now, just imagine being Black and wanting to just provide the same basic things for your family. Regardless of the stereotypes created to stigmatize Black men, Black men want the same things, and so do Asian, Hispanics and other races of men. This is not an American White male issue, this is a male of every race issue, and it far exceeds the borders of the United States. 

The problem is that political motivations disable the ability for men of all races to fight with each other, and create an atmosphere to fight against one another. Meanwhile the ones at the top laugh all the way to the fucking bank. LBJ hit the nail on the head when he said, "If you can convince the lowest white man he's better than the best colored man, he won't notice you're picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he'll empty his pockets for you."

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Male 2,356
It's true-Middle aged white men are cogs in the machine. The machine is broken.
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Male 7,280
The American Dream has become unobtainable for most, its a hard pill to swallow.
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Male 45,617
What's Killing American White Men

Besides suicide

Obesity
Cholesterol
Alcohol
High blood pressure
Stress
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Gerry1of1 You nailed it.  I worked out every day for years, so I didn't have the obesity problem, but I had high blood pressure, high cholesterol and a job that was extremely stressful (my record workday was 17 hours and I still fell behind every day).  According to the hospitalist, I had a 'huge' stroke.  I dunno, but I tend to think that if I hadn't been exercising every day for years, it might have killed me.  I was on meds for the blood pressure, but was working at least 12 hour days and didn't check it as often as I should have been.  I think part of the stress portion is that we no longer have 8 hour work days.  If you want to keep your job, you'd better do a hell of a lot more.  My stroke was kind of a relief actually.
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Male 223
join a Fight Club .. the first and second rules really don't matter
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Male 9,342
About 25 years ago I was going through a bad patch; couldn't pay the bills, dreaded the post every morning. Made a point of always paying my life insurance premiums. In the back of my mind was the idea that a man must provide for his family one way or another and if it came to it, accidents happen.

Couple of years later I was buying a house and things just got better.
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Female 6,692
LordJim That was one of my final straws with my now-exhusband.  To spare HIS paycheck, he pulled me off his medical insurance and cancelled his life insurance policy.
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Male 18,342
melcervini what an arsehole. You did the right thing. 
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Male 781
Who cares as long as it does! Am I right?
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Male 15
My dog saved my life as well.
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Male 9,342
boobob Having a dog makes life better. Simple fact.
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Male 13,279
boobob were you trapped in a well or something?
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Male 781
holygod https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Q2s8AJbsps
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Male 13,279
Shelworth I knew where that was headed, but it was still funny. Nice.
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Male 13,279
Ok. Porn has taught me that "BBC" means big black cock.

The headline wrapped so as to say:

What's Killing America's White Men? BBC 

Funny for just a second, but funny none the less.
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Male 683
holygod Same with ATM.
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Male 9,498
holygod OK, that is funny. Lemme see how I can rearrange the text there. I'm glad you said something. If you noticed it, probably a hundred others did as well.
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Male 880
squrlz4ever only a hundred other IABers who are also porn consumers... so maybe the numbers aren't all that bad.  Besides, I'm guessing most folks who fit into that category are able to figure it out quickly enough.
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Male 178
Comes down to poverty. Most people who living paycheck to paycheck just never feel like you are going anywhere. And then you see all those rich people on tv making life seem easy and here you are struggling each day just to have enough money to buy food or even to pay your bills. It's a constant slap in  the face when you reach that point of life where it is nothing but a struggle to make ends meet. Even worse when you have kids and a wife. Just seeing it in some one else's face just make it even harder cause you can not only feel it but you can see it.
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Male 259
tinfoilhatsociety i would say i agree with that assessment. poverty in my opinion, based off what i have seen from people around me in my life, is the largest single reason for suicide.

im a tradesman, been doing that work since highschool. i work long hours, its very physically demanding, done outdoors in the weather, and dangerous. all the years i have spent doing this and i have no savings. i dont own a home, and if i get sick or injured im screwed because there are very few contractors that offer health insurance.(mine doesnt)

i eat well, i pay my rent and utilities on time, car insurance, and a few extras like internet. but after all that i have not much leftover. i have to say i have thought about suicide a few times in the past. i am highly regarded amongst my crew, i do good work and am praised regularly, yet for some reason, the same job that my uncle raised his family on(he has 4 kids) wont allow me to have any kind of actual life. it sucks
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Male 18,342
tinfoilhatsociety white Christian men are too poor? Maybe they're just not working hard enough to achieve the American Dream?...

Poverty, loneliness, chronic pain, PTSD and such are all contributing factors or triggers, but they don't make you kill yourself.

Wealthy and successful people can be suicidal because they have unreasonable expectations. I was up till midnight last night talking about suicide with a friend who is a mid level guy at a top investment bank because he felt he should have 10x more savings by now. He simply has not lived up to the fantasy trajectory he projected he'd be on when he graduated from an Ivy League college. Yes, he has depression, but the stellar expectations are part of the problem.

Suicide runs in my own family on my father's side. It's a constant thought in my head too, even if I recognize what's wrong with the thought. I'm just lucky I have sufficient fear, support, and crushing sense of duty to not be at risk when I'm occasionally not thinking right.

Suicide is not always illogical. If I had late stage cancer and all I had to live for was unending pain it might be logical. Short of that, it's pretty much a matter of faulty internal processing, framing or unfair comparison. Or a transient bad situation I can't see a way out of. Evertime I don't do it, I look back and am grateful I didn't make the mistake and that makes it a bit easier next time.
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Male 880
Draculya Someone close to me put his choice to stay alive this way: "I figure have all of eternity to be dead, so I should experience all I am going to experience while I can."  He says thinking this way helps him to accept even the hardest, most gut-wrenchingly painful stuff as just another experience.  
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Draculya Yeah, my family has a history of alzheimers.  Dad had it, aunt, grandma, etc, ec.  Essentially, every single person on my dad's side of the family.  After repeatedly seeing the end stages (laying in bed in a care facility, wearing a diaper, unable to speak, walk, etc), I can say that theres no way I'm going through that.  Suicide seems preferable.  Its just a question of how long after I'm diagnosed will my mind be cogent enough to carry out such an act.  I'm 48 now.  Judging by prior family members, I should have about ten more years of mental health.  Hopefully they'll have an effective treatment by then.  If not, then I think suicide is preferable.
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Male 9,342
kelly_hanna I agree. 
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Male 9,498
tinfoilhatsociety I think you've identified a major, if not the major, cause behind the epidemic.

Study after study after study has found that when you have extreme divides in a society between the haves and have-nots, the mental health of the society deteriorates. (Yes, I'm aware my last statement will cause some right-wingers to take offense.) American society has not been this split between the Rich and Everyone Else since The Gilded Age.

Currently, the three richest Americans hold more wealth than the bottom 50% of the population (and that figure was reported by Forbes, hardly a liberal publication). While the super rich are buying private jets and building yachts like never before, a majority of the American population is living hand-to-mouth, with little or nothing saved for retirement. Pension plans have been gutted or eliminated. Middle class incomes have done nothing but stagnate or drop, despite record-breaking productivity on the part of the American worker.

The wealthy few, in boardrooms and in the halls of Congress, have been giving a big middle finger to the American middle class for decades now. There's no way anyone can tell me there's no correlation between that level of corruption, greed, and indifference from the rich and the rising suicide rate of the disappearing American middle class.
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Male 2,194
squrlz4ever @tinfoilhatsociety yup, when people feel worthless, they want to (a) hurt themselves and (b) hurt those who they feel like have caused that hurt. When you have really rich people right in front of really poor people, those really poor people feel quite hurt. Especially when it seems like those really rich people actively do things to prevent the really poor people from being able to make their lives better.

Disparity and the perception of an unfair life have always led to the downfall of societies.
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