Why it’s a problem: This article expands on the criminalization of suicide by suggesting that forensics can help to “decode” suicidal veterans’ behaviors by analyzing the tech devices left behind by veterans who have died by suicide. However, the suggestion that suicidality is a Black Box is actually a form of gaslighting meant to make suicidal individuals seem perplexing, unpredictable, and dangerous, and meant to remove accountability for the people and institutions that contribute to suicidal people’s despair. For example, it’s not a secret that the military chews up young people and spits them out, but support services for veterans, especially through the VA, are abysmal. There is also often an obstinate unwillingness by people to acknowledge suicidal people’s needs, even though they express their needs in myriad ways. Furthermore, there is a legitimate fear among suicidal people that disclosing suicidal thoughts will lead to being criminalized, punished, or killed by police. In fact, this article tries especially hard to justify the murder of a suicidal veteran who was killed by police, stating that “the death was determined to be a suicide” and “the officers’ actions were justified.” Of course, but no.

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