The Arrow

There are no answers; only choices.

Mental Illness and the U.S. Injustice System

Posted by thearrow on March 16, 2009

I know I should be talking about more cheerful things, especially given the recent developments in my life, but I just saw this video and it broke my heart. After seeing it I closed the door to my office and cried, something I’ll probably continue to do intermittently throughout the day.

Explain to me, please, how is it possible that in a country so publicly religious otherwise, where presidential candidates have no chance of winning unless they talk about their faith (unheard of in Europe), people with severe mental illnesses are locked up in jails for even minor crimes, and not treated? Not only that, but they are kept in squalor, without the most basic conditions necessary to maintain some human dignity. Explain to me how Christian values of empathy, love, respect for life (otherwise touted everywhere) are compatible with this crass neglect of people in desperate need for help.

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6 Responses to “Mental Illness and the U.S. Injustice System”

  1. WE said

    Sa incep cu sfarsitul: zi merci ca presa e mai libera si poti sa vezi asa ceva. Ca nu li se mai pune ziaristilor calusul in gura.

    Sistemul american de puscarii este in mare parte privat. Adica este for profit. Acesti oameni nu aduc niciun profit, de aceea sunt tinuti in acele conditii absolut indescriptibile. Culmea ironiei, Miami-Dade county este unul din cele mai bogate din tara asta. Asta ar fi partea “sociala”.

    Partea “culturala” este ipocrizia infricosata a puritanilor: ce nu vezi nu exista. Te imbeti ca porcul in propria casa, politia intoarce capul la domestic violence etc. Cat timp vecinul nu este fortat sa vada, nu exista. American beauty – l-ai vazut?

    O intrebare: de ce crezi ca sunt atatia homeless people in our good and plentiful States of A?

  2. WE said

    “how is it possible that in a country so publicly religious otherwise” — asta e si vina nordului. ca nu a investit absolut deloc in sudul sarac si umilit si asa a lasat religios nutjobs sa castige putere generatie cu generatie. intai au fost baptistii care s-au intins si in nord si i-au impins pe catolici inspre nord-east. dupa aia au venit penticostalii, pe langa care baptistii sunt mielusei si modele de moderatie, care i-au impins pe baptisti din sud – asta fac si acum si era cat pe aci sa isi puna un vicepres. la casa alba.

    daca nordul ar fi investit, nu ar mai fost posibil kkk’ul si crimele rasiste et al. si uite asa sudul se razbuna.

  3. v said

    (poate daca s-ar inlocui ipocriziile alea religioase cu principii umaniste, (mai) altfel ar merge lucrurile. deci, da, exact de-aia e posibil. din cauza ca tara aia e “so publicly religious”. otherwise.)

  4. thearrow said

    Scuze ca am disparut asa; I’ve been busy. Multzam lui Elf pentru explicatiile nuantate. Si mie mi se pare ca ai dreptate, ca nordul nu a investit in sud. Altfel da, stiu ca the prison system e in mare parte privat, dar I lay the blame on the government for doing squat about these people who cannot defend themselves in any way. Prison owners are in it for the money; the government should be in it for the people, so it has no excuse as far as I’m concerned.

    As to why there are so many homeless people in America, you’ve touched another sore spot. I’ve wanted to write about this for some time but found that I didn’t have much else to say other than expressing outrage and sadness. I’m a bit familiar with research on homelessness, though (through my job, not my merit), and I know experts say that it is largely a mental health issue, so we’re back to the same square one. It’s a fucked up country, what can I say… All sorts of ideological and religious principles are allowed to come before people.

    So I agree with V., too, that one of the reasons why this is possible is because religion is not kept private but it’s made a huge public deal of. As soon as you take this out of the private realm, you’ve smeared/ruined it with hypocrisy. And I say this as someone who believes in God.

  5. ~m said

    and then you get the guy–apparently sane–who stabbed a complete stranger, a young university student, 82 times, killing him for no apparent reason, right after Christmas break 20 years ago and who only goes on to serve 1/3 of his sentence, like what happened to the brother of a friend of mine.
    so APPARENTLY as long as you are sane, you’ll be alright no matter what beastly crime you commit.
    Something very wrong with that, no?

  6. thearrow said

    Yes, pretty f-ed up. I can’t believe that guy only served 1/3 of his sentence after doing something like that. Dude…

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