California’s Golden Gate Bridge– and the Bridge at Cornell University

GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE —

Its architectural grace has inspired poets.  The Golden Gate Bridge is a symbol of San Francisco’s entrance to adventure and the sea.  Unfortunately, the Golden Gate Bridge has beckoned depressed adults and children towards suicide.

Mel Blaustein, director of psychiatry at St. Francis Hospital in San Francisco says: “The Golden Gate Bridge has always had an allure for those who are depressed, between its beauty and its low-4-foot barrier.  It was like a loaded gun. Perhaps not anymore.”

Hooray!  No longer will people be able to jump to their death and fall 220 feet into the cold waters of San Francisco Bay.  A “suicide barrier” will be built at a cost of $76 million now that the funds have been approved by the board of the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District.

The steel-cable safety net will run the length of the bridge from east to west.  Dr. Lloyd Moglen, a psychiatrist who once had a radio show in San Francisco, spent many hours talking would-be suicidal people out of jumping to their death.

Since 1937, when the span of the Golden Gate Bridge opened, there have been more than 1,200 deaths according to the USA TODAY column by Marco della Cava on July 21, 2014.

Now that the suicide barrier will be built at the Golden Gate Bridge, let us consider a barrier for the bridge at Cornell University in Ithaca New York.  Many years ago, when he was a freshman at Cornell, Alfie Levenson jumped off the bridge.  He was a brilliant young man with visions of becoming a mathematician or scientist.  Instead, his life was cut short at age nineteen.

“Foiling death on the Golden Gate Bridge” is the headline in USA TODAY.  Let us also consider foiling death in Ithaca New York at the Cornell University Bridge.

 

Zisa Moglen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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