THE LUPOE SUICIDE TRAGEDY IN L.A: MY THOUGHTS
A terrible occurence that didn't have to happen
Like the rest of America, I was profoundly shocked when I heard about Ervin Lupoe shooting his five children and his wife Ana before turning the gun on himself this week.
Then when I read in the Los Angeles Times about how he and his wife both lost their jobs at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in West Los Angeles, where they were both medical technicians, and were up to their eyeballs in IRS and credit card debt, I understood. I didn't condone what they did, not by any means, but I did understand.
And then I got mad.
Not at Lupoe or his wife, however; this is not, I repeat NOT, their blame.
I blame Kaiser Permanente for this family's tragic death. That's right, I said that. I went there. This death is on that hospital's head. Or on Lupoe's supervisor's head at least.
According to a story I read in the L.A. Times, Lupoe and his wife were fired from Kaiser because they lied about their income on a form in order to get more affordable child care, and forged their supervisor's signature in the process.
Now don't get me wrong here, I definitely DO NOT condon what Lupoe did. What he and his wife tried to pull was wrong, BUT...
What Kaiser did to that struggling couple was heartless, cruel, and unforgivable. It was akin to giving someone the death penalty over forging a perscription; worthy of jail time to be sure, but not the electric chair.
What Lupoe and his wife should have gotten, what they deserved, was a two-week suspension. That's what I would have given them if I was head of Kaiser's Human Resource department, but noooo...
One mistake that they made, and they're kicked to the curb. This was nothing but a one-strike-and you're-out deal, and not only is that unfair, it is just flat-out wrong.
Having been a member of Kaiser for nearly 30 years before leaving them late last year, I honestly wasn't surprised at how that hospital dealt with that situation. When I was trying to work out bill and payment issues with them on the phone due to some financial problems that I have, not only did they give me the run-around, they were complately unsympathetic to my situation and demanded money that I did not begin to have, nor would likely to have immediately.
In short, every time I dealt with them over the past year or so had left me going away angry at them.
So I even though I didn't condone what Lupoe did, I understood his apparent frustration with that company.
That's why I honestly feel that...LUPOE AND HIS FAMILY'S DEATH / SUICIDE IS KAISER PERMANENTE'S FAULT!
In other words, in my view Lupoe didn't really kill his family or himself. Kaiser did.
The blood of that family rests on Kaiser's hands. That's right, I went there.
Not only should Kaiser pay for that family's funeral, but the survivors of Lupoe and his wife should sue the heck out of them, for the pain and suffereing they had caused that poor clan.
Perhaps then they would rest in peace. Which is what I certainly wish them.