White Collar Suicide
Suicide is an ugly topic that no one really wants to discuss. We all seem to know someone who has attempted suicide or actually committed suicide. It leaves a gapping hole.
For many white collar offenders, suicide is an option that they have considered at some point during the criminal process. I knew a white collar offender who committed suicide many years ago. He was a Judge at the Michigan Court of Appeals. He was arrested for taking bribes to fix cases. He was released on bond, went home, and shot himself in his garage. I knew this Judge fairly well as He was a new sailor who purchased a sailboat and I helped to teach him how to sail. I used to go with him and the other appellate court judges for Friday afternoon sails on Lake St Clair. His crime was shocking to all of us, but his suicide was more shocking. As I waited for the charges to be filed against me, I must confess that I considered suicide as an option. It would have solved my family’s financial concerns with life insurance proceeds. It would have allowed me to avoid facing the charges that would soon be filed against me, and it would have eliminated the terror and fear I was experiencing as a result of my poor choices. Two people made me realize that this was an irrational and selfish response. (My Doctor and My Priest). Their logic was quite simple. 1.) How do you know if your pain and suffering will be any better after you commit suicide? It could be worse? and 2.) Are you so selfish that you seek to escape the consequences of your wrongs and leave your family and friends to clean up the mess you have created?
When you consider the question in a rational fashion, suicide is no longer an option. You accept the consequences, you try to learn from your mistakes, and you try to emerge from the disaster you created as a productive citizen. This is my hope, and this is my plan.