Rev. Kenn Blanchard, a.k.a., the Black Man with a Gun has been on the frontlines of several social battles. This podcasting former US Marine, former law enforcement officer, trainer, Second Amendment activist, and ordained Christian pastor is not afraid to talk openly about suicide. He is creating a project using music and YouTube to reach anyone he can to not take their life.
Music is universal as is the human condition. Depression, and mental illness can affect anyone. Using the alias of seasoned and burgeoning blues guitarist, he hopes to share inspiration, encouragement and reminders about living.
“Being in character allows me to be direct and talk openly and matter-of-factly about a dark subject, like suicide. And through this infotainment share about persons or agencies specializing in crisis intervention and suicide prevention,” says Blanchard.
Service members who are stationed in other countries or deployed to combat zones often experience loneliness and isolation. Most have cell phones and access to social media. These platforms provide important vehicles to express ourselves, find information, and communicate with one another. This is also true for individuals in distress who are potentially suicidal. Too often their posts go unnoticed or not responded to. It’s a good chance these days that you may know of someone who died by suicide.
As a pastor and experienced leader, Blanchard has been trained to listen and allow others to express their feelings. He shares that we are not to make moral judgments, act shocked, or make light of the situation if we want to help someone that has confided in you. He suggest that we do not try to minimize the problem.
One suicide is too many.
“When I remember what social media is good for, creating a channel to encourage engagement, share information and build relationships is a no-brainer.”
Blanchard is using his expanding his nonprofit and online ministry called Speak Life Church, Inc., to operate. He plans busking the blues with a purpose, to save a life.
It’s not how much we have, but how much we enjoy that makes happiness.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline that is a national network of local crisis centers that provides free and confidential emotional support topeople in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week in the United States. They’re committed to improving crisis services and advancing suicide prevention by empowering individuals, advancing professional best practices, and building awareness.Check out these podcast: Black Man With A Gun Show , Speak Life church , and Indian Motorcycle radio The Books, Kenn has written.