No one needs to be told that the senseless deaths of our younger generation is appalling. And it's because everyone reaches for the obvious as the only explanation for it that has me upset. Take the blinders off people! This situation wasn't created overnight.

But there is more...

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In our immediate world there is a hard fought battle over a complex that could very well be the answer.

The fight to save the Fergus Falls Kirkbride is a serious one, a crucial, critical mission. Why you may ask? Its outlived its usefulness. The need for a mental hospital has seen its day and the day is gone.

You couldn't be more wrong.

When the state government, insurance companies, and assorted other powers-that-be decided that the needs of the patients would be better served in their own communities, they did us all a huge disservice. Releasing these people to the outside world to depend on less appropriate care or no care at all is negligence. Essentially they were left to fend for themselves. Society and its governing decision makers swung wide the doors to the dependence on pharmaceuticals to fix the problems, and created a homeless population from our country's castaways.

Think of it this way, if those same governing bodies, those same entities that tossed these vulnerable patients to the curb were to take our Senior citizens from the Rest Homes, Retirement Centers, Assisted Living Centers and said "NO MORE!" and closed those doors behind would you feel?

Now tell me again how you want to throw away the one resource this community has... REUSE of our Kirkbride for what it was and will always be intended for. "To take care of its needy, wounded, and lost souls."

Put away all your thoughts of the 'old' methods of caring for our mentally, physically, emotionally challenged citizens. We've come so far beyond that. Yes there were horrible stories from the past, but what about our horrible reality.

Finally, on a personal level for all of us who fight this fight for our Kirkbride castle is a love for the building, its past, its present, its future, and a familial connection through family and friends who lived, died, and served within its walls. What was relevant the day our Kirkbride was built still holds true today. Its purpose back then still exists today. That will not change.

Shirlee Taylor,

Deer Creek