Henry Rollins Blasts the Late Robin Williams for Taking His Own Life
In the wake of Robin Williams‘ death, there has been an outpouring of sentiment on the actor/comedian’s life as well as the decision to take his own life. One of those weighing in recently is rocker Henry Rollins, who just penned a column for L.A. Weekly in which he blasts Williams for committing suicide.
Rollins starts the column off by praising Williams as an actor and “a good man” during his life, but admits he lost a little respect after he took his own life. The singer states, “I am sure some will strongly disagree with what I’m about to say, and I also understand that his personal struggles were quite real. I can’t argue with that. But I simply cannot understand how any parent could kill themselves.”
He adds, “I think as soon as you have children, you waive your right to take your own life. No matter what mistakes you make in life, it should be your utmost goal not to traumatize your kids. So don’t kill yourself.”
Rollins addresses depression, stating, “I get that you can’t understand anyone else’s torment. All that ‘I feel your pain’ stuff is bulls–t and disrespectful. You can appreciate it, listen and support someone as best you can, but you can’t understand it. Depression is so personal and so unique to each of us that when you’re in its teeth, you think you invented it. You can understand your own, but that’s it. When you are severely depressed, it can be more isolating than anything else you have ever experienced. In trying to make someone understand, you can only speak in approximation. You are truly on your own.”
But even with having a decent grasp on depression, Rollins feels that committing the act of suicide is something he cannot get behind. “When someone negates their existence, they cancel themselves out in my mind. I have many records, books and films featuring people who have taken their own lives, and I regard them all with a bit of disdain. When someone commits this act, he or she is out of my analog world,” says the singer. “I no longer take this person seriously. I may be able to appreciate what he or she did artistically but it’s impossible to feel bad for them. Their life wasn’t cut short — it was purposely abandoned. It’s hard to feel bad when the person did what they wanted to. It sucks they are gone, of course, but it’s the decision they made. I have to respect it and move on.”
He concludes, “Almost 40,000 people a year kill themselves in America, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In my opinion, that is 40,000 people who blew it. F–k suicide. Life isn’t anything but what you make it.”
To read Rollins’ full L.A. Weekly commentary, check here.