19 Yearold Stabs Himself in the Chest Repeatedly Before Live Audience

An Oregon audience at open mic night were shocked after applauding what they thought was performance art of a teen pretending to kill himself at the Strictly Organic Coffee Company.  It was not a performance, but a suicide.  After playing a song called “Sorry For All The Mess,” Kipp Rusty Walker repeatedly stabbed himself in the chest with a six-inch knife.

The suicide has raised questions of his treatment by state psychiatric authorities. 

One of Walker’s friends said that he had been planning to kill himself in a public place for some time: “It was almost like he wanted to prove a point, like there’s no point in being scared of death because it’s going to happen to us anyway.”  The friend reportedly told Walker’s parents who had him committed St Charles Medical Centre in Bend.  The friend is quoted as saying
“I actually told him, I was like, ‘Dude, this is going to mess a lot of people up.’”

Beyond the tragedy itself, there is a question of the responsibility of state officials and the coffee shop.  I believe the shop is not likely to face liability -assuming (as appears to be the case) that they had no reason to expect such an unforeseeable act.  It would be hard to establish the basis for a negligent infliction of emotional distress claim as an audience member.

The hospital could be more vulnerable if a reasonable doctor would not have released Walker.  However, again, such acts are hard to predict and make generally for a poor basis for legal action.

From a public policy perspective, however, there are increasing complaints over the treatment (and release) of potentially violent individuals.  It is a difficult balance for a state.  We have moved away from the large-scale institutionalization of the mentally ill.
After the Supreme Court handed down its decision in O’Connor v. Donaldson in 1975, states were ordered that they cannot involuntarily hold a person who is not imminently a danger to himself or others and able to survive on his own.  That decision ended abuses across the country and allowed mentally disabled individuals to have functional lives.  In any such case, there can be problems particularly if an individual does not receive or take necessary medication.

Source:  Daily Mail

Jonathan Turley


I copy-pasted the report as it is to avoid missing a certain point between the lines, or having to edit or re-write it all over again, but mainly, I wanted to focus on the incident, and the act of suicide, rather than who's to blame, or which direction to point fingers at.


So, I wanted to know your prospective of it all. What do you think of suicide? and of people who commit it? Do you consider contemplating suicide psychotic? And just what are your thoughts on this particular story?


I don't consider people who contemplate or even commit suicide psychotic. In fact, I think, maybe, they know too much... or just that they haven't found what keeps any of us from taking his/her own life, perhaps, a goal, a companion, or even a bunch of them.


I find the attitude people take towards suicide is similar to that of a believer to a non-believer, in a sense, that they think should be saved in the manner they see fit, which I find both very demeaning, and judgemental. Making up fairy-tales as a purpose to keep you from killing yourself is not very sane either.

Tags: 19, Audience., Bend, Mic, Open, Oregon, Psychiatric, Stabs, Suicide, Teen, More…Therapy, Yearold

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P.S: if you had to.., just had to throw in the very unoriginal "it's the utmost selfish act anyone could do in their life time, leaving their dependants behind, and many who cared about them traumatized", at least do it in a subtle new way that I don't recognize it right away.


I had originally posted this titled "Suicidal Thoughts, thinking it would rise enough eye brows, but then I realised the mysterious ways advertisement works in springing up most attention.

Regarding the story above, it's highly unfortunate about Kipp's death, and tragic for the witnesses, but not everyone makes it to old age.   People die.  People kill themselves.  Certainly, I believe we should do our best to help people who are seriously contemplating suicide -- there is very likely a light at the end of the tunnel that they just can't see from their current perspective --, but I also think that once someone commits suicide, we need to accept it.  

Learn what you can from it; express our sorrow and mourn it; accept it.  What's done is done.

Given the nature of his suicide, I think it's a reasonable enough assumption that something was quite off with the machinery in his head.  Perhaps he's a victim here, not in his death, but in how he got to that point.  A victim of what  I don't really know.  Life? Circumstance? Mental illness?  Even so, unless psychiatric authorities turned Kipp away against his will or without a reasonable evaluation, I don't think they bear any responsibility.   It's hard to see inside someone's head clearly enough to predict this sort of behavior.  Many psychiatric care facilities seem to be under resourced, and there's a limit to how much help they can give to a person who appears functional, yet does not want to take the help being offered.

In Canada, suicide and attempted suicide have long been decriminalized.  I would like to see euthenasia and assisted suicide legalized in many cases as well.  I think all people have a right to stop living that should be recognized.  It's not something I cast moral judgments on, though there are two moral dilemmas I haven't entirely figured out.

The first is parents with children as dependents.  If you choose to be a parent, you bear an obligation to safeguard the well-being of your children.  In that sense, I think these parents do have a moral obligation to seek the help they need and go one living.  In this sense, it's not so much that I see suicide as immoral; it's that I think there's an incredibly strong likelihood that suicide will result in the failure to fill a separate moral obligation.

The second issue is with minors.  Philosophically, I think that people of the age of minority also have the right to end their lives, yet in practice, we should do everything in our power to stop them.  If an adult told me they were considering suicide, I would appeal to them to seek help or offer to help them myself in any way that I could, but ultimately, I would respect their freedom to make the choice.  Can't say the same for minors.  I feel obligated to protect them, even from themselves.  I've read a couple of cases of gay teens who killed themselves after being rejected by their families, their school, their peers and by their religion.  I don't blame them at all.  I don't even find fault with their perspective.  I guess the point is, that's a situation where they needed someone to protect them, but no one was there.  They probably had a much brighter future ahead of them, but just blocked from seeing it off in the distance.

Outside of those two scenarios, I don't have a major issue with suicide. It's probably not the best choice in the vast majority of cases, but I shouldn't be able to make that choice for anyone but myself. I found out a few weeks back that a friend of mine committed suicide. I don't know if he explained it all in a message somewhere, or even how he did it, but I don't think that he was crazy or suffering from any abnormal mental condition at the time. He lived a pretty full life, and touched a lot of people's hearts and minds. I don't consider him selfish in the least. He enriched the lives of others for the thousands upon thousands of days he was with us. It would be selfish of me to get upset with him over not giving us more. I think it's much more reasonable instead to thank him deeply for what he gave us already. What we've been given already through his actions over the course of a life time far outweigh any sadness caused by his actions on that one final day.

That was more than I thought anyone had to say on this subject, so, I'd like to think you for the time and effort it took you to reply. As I do agree with you on most every point you made, I think the reason euthanasia isn't legalized yet is the irrational fear of morbidity or "playing god" as they call it.


And just as minors cannot legally give consent, or purchase substances, I would say it's pretty reasonable to at least not leave them be on their own when they're facing tough times, as they would need far more assistance handling their issues that goes beyond their realm, I just think we ought to be more rational about it, instead of edging them onto false promises of a brighter future, I would say for some, there are life long scars, that they might not want to go on living with.


On parent obligation, I take some issue with, because not all parents choose a life of parenthood, many of whom, I take it, were suddenly faced with, and even those who chose it, might not have explored all of their options, or expected it to be the way it came out to be. Besides, it's not such a black-and-white dilemma, as nothing is, for some children of abusive parents, suicide may be considered a relief. There's a lot to discuss there, but if I chose to be a parent, I would definitely think it over and over again, if I could go at least manage until their mature, and could take care of themselves, it may not be as bleak then even.


I like how you take on some level of objectivity towards your friend committing suicide, and I definitely have the same thoughts on selfishness being projected by those whom milk everything out of somebody, until they haven't got more to give, and when they opt out and choose to end it, they blame him/her for not giving them more, and it's just seems to me that they're casting stones of their own evil, in such a classic self-projection kind of way.



"Besides, it's not such a black-and-white dilemma, as nothing is, for some children of abusive parents, suicide may be considered a relief."

You are correct. It isn't a black and white issue and I had no intention of presenting it as such, but there are too many outliers to account for in a single paragraph. I am speaking to a typical case in hypothetical terms. In practice, I have no way of jumping into someone else's head or even into their family life to properly understand their situation.

Certainly, I believe we should do our best to help people who are seriously contemplating suicide...

One more reason not to ban guns. Unless you meant we should be trying to stop them. 

This is actually one of the few redeeming aspects of ease of firearm ownership in my opinion. There are better methods, but then there are also much much worse methods. Sadly people do mess it up and place themselves in an awful state, but potentially it is quick and efficient.

More seriously, each of us owns ourselves. If you don't even have the right to your life, what greater right can the government take away? I can see trying to prevent a murder, but not a suicide. To do so is to violate the other person's ownership of himself.

The first thing I thought about was 'Damn , this guy really went out with style!'

Then I reflected on my first thought. Then I came to realize... 'Damn that guy really DID go out with style!'

But yeah , the audience was probably pretty fucking shocked after realizing it wasn't really an act.

Reminds me ... In Bart Ehrmans textbook on the New Testament , he postulates that Paul was actually approving of suicide in one his writings and that suicide was not looked down upon during those times , but perhaps even glorified as you are making a sacrifice to your God. After all , Jesus did sort of commit suicide within the context of his trials. So did Socrates , yes? Both of them had a clear and clean chance to evade death and they chose not too.

I know, I know... poetic, was my initial thought. The scene where a small audience are all clapping to his death is imprinted in my head, just as if I were one of them. Beside the fact that the crowd had some sort of a trauma, and I read in another post, that they were also offered psychological therapy, I would say: if that's not the way to go, I don't know what is. But then again, I can't possibly imagine stabbing myself in the heart, then pulling it back out and stab myself again to begin with, but if I had gone and done it the first time, I'd better finished the job.


I have come to the conclusion that, with all Abrahamic religions, the only reason they condemn suicide is because it declines their numbers, but when it suits their purposes, like when they ask you to go on and die in a holy-war or a do a terrorist attack, it's only a courageous and honorable act.


Because if I truly believed in a heaven, I wouldn't settle for a miserable life, in comparison, here on earth. I would take my own life in attestation of my own convictions, but of course...that doesn't help the actual case of religion, which could be narrowed down to:

1)power, and

2)growing imperialism(which is just more of the first one, really).

That's pretty badass. Those people certainly got their money's worth.

Of course if he'd stabbed a baby multiple times he'd have got a standing ovation.

Seriously, there are worse ways of wasting your life than suicide. Spending it playing video games, building a big wheelse pickup truck, or working a phone in a call center, for example.

This is a very impressive suicide. I'm pro-choice when it comes to suicide, and I'm fairly sure it's the way I'll go out, albeit eventually. It seems logical. But I haven't exactly figured out how yet. I assume a gun, but that of course requires that I first own a gun.

At any rate, "making up fairy-tales as a purpose to keep yourself from killing yourself" is life. That's what "It is what you make it" means. So the purpose is in the making. At the very least, it's debatable, making it a foolish action without a good reason.


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