Death by government

A short but heartbreaking story out of Kansas City.

Issac Sims’ family said he spent every day last week coming to the VA hospital, but was told on Friday that he had to wait a month to be admitted for his PTSD. Sims, 26, was an Iraq war veteran.

On Sunday, Sims got into a fight with his father outside their home on 23rd and Lawndale. A neighbor called police when Sims fired gunshots.

When officers arrived, they decided to call in the SWAT team. The standoff ended when officers shot and killed Sims.

“I said ‘Don’t shoot him, I can get there without a problem,’” Issac’s father, Adrian, said.

To recap: The government sent Isaac Sims man to fight a pointless war waged on a collection of false premises. When he returned, Veterans Affairs refused to treat the part of him that the war had broken. Left untreated, his post-traumatic stress disorder caused him to lash out. So the local government sent a SWAT team, which killed him.

Radley Balko blogs about criminal justice, the drug war and civil liberties for The Washington Post. He is the author of the book "Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America's Police Forces."
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Radley Balko · May 28