A Tribute to One of My Heroes
Dr. Mario Martinez
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In reading the article by Dr. Mario Martinez and the some 20 responses, by experts and non-experts alike, it is evident that there is only one sure thing that can be said about the suicide of someone: when you attempt to say what ‘caused’ a suicide of someone else, you will always find another person to contradict you. Was the cause of Bourdain’s suicide existential choice? internal demons? brain illness? depression? bad health?, old age?, despair? etc. etc.

Here, then rather than appeal to authority and use the death of someone for speculation, should we not take these evident contradictions and ignorance seriously?

If we do, the most evident and ethical response to any suicide is simply this: nobody knows why Bourdain, or anyone else, committed suicide after the fact.

This does not mean to say that a suicidal person cannot be addressed in order to find out his/her reasons for wanting to suicide; but it should only be his/her reasons, not others.

Without this detachment from the other, without leaving a place for ignorance at the place of the cause, there is no respect, there is no real other, no Bourdain, no singularity, just people borrowing his name as an alter-ego, a hero, for their own story and pet theories.

a grain of ethical salt,

S