Defining Insanity

So these were originally compiled as a form of legal defense for my ‘day in court.’  I did not realize how punctuated that day would be, so I decided to instead present these arguments more in a philosophical light here- my verdict is in, and I am complying appropriately, but there are plenty others that I met ‘on the inside’ and could see simply from the nature of the system itself, that would get stuck in it, for a variety of reasons.   I present these arguments mainly for those without a voice; they are primarily so that the reader comes away with a little more knowledge, and having heard a first hand perspective, of the Mental Health/Psychiatric Health process in Arizona.

The real question I want to focus on here is: Is “strange” sufficient behavior to lock someone away or require them to take medication that alters their mind?  Should there be more to a mental illness (or in my case SMI- Serious Mental Illness) than odd behavior- such as harm to oneself or harm to others?  In the balance of my report I was found to be cooperative, friendly, and overall fairly goofy when I was being taken to CBI.  I had essentially reverted to a childlike state.  The extent of any crimes I could have been charged with were ‘J-Walking’ and ‘walking into traffic’ which on the street they had it listed on would have been more like obstructing a single car as it passed, as there is no actual traffic on the quiet neighborhood street I live on.

And they asked questions I was not in a position to answer (as I was too high at the time)- they also got some ‘high’ type of answers to other questions they did ask (stuff like, the rocks are my family).  Now I had clearly demonstrated in my time with the officers that I would not be a danger to anyone else, and unlikely would even be a direct danger to myself if left outside.  Instead they marked me down as “acutely or persistently disabled” which is an interesting label given the first time nature of our encounter, and it was apparent (and I made it clear) that I had been smoking marijuana, so any assessment as to the nature of my state of mind would have necessarily been temporary in nature.

After the entire psychiatric hospital stay, I personally returned to my house, and felt like I saw all the evidence I needed to acknowledge that I had not been in my right mind.  Maybe I can’t handle my weed, maybe it’s something more permanent, maybe it’s some combination of the these factors.  What I wanted to illustrate were the facts leading up to me being taken in, and the specific process used and followed before taking someone in to a place like CBI.  Often the officers probably feel they are doing the individual a favor, but the very fact that in many cases the officer is obligated (or said another way, legally restricted based on possible outcomes) to take someone somewhere in cases like these, mean that incorrect moves are made and that individuals end up in these facilities every day that should not be.  Additionally, once in the system, there is a push toward medicating these individuals for 1 year.  The biggest issue for me is that it skips the entire process of law (see ‘A gross miscarriage of justice’ for what ‘legal process’ is offered up in these cases), and the current system draws the bar for defining insanity too closely to the side of quirky or odd, and does not pay close enough mind to harm, which in my opinion should be at the heart of any such diagnosis.


~ by songoflove on March 6, 2017.

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