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Mental Asylums Back?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Invictus, Feb 24, 2018.

  1. Invictus

    Invictus Banned

    Mar 21, 2013
    Cidade Maravilhosa
    So, with the Florida shooting, Trump revived an old call to bring back mental Asylums. While the way he did it was undoubtedly pernicious, linkening them to permanent prisons by another name, I think it's actually an important discussion to be made and I wanted to hear DLP opinion about it.

    I think that, in essence, bringing them back is a good idea.
    This Atlantic article summarises it well, but let me lay down the essence of my opinion:
    • Mental Diseases don't go away and can't be cured with just love and time - The idea that staying with your family is always better is actually false. While in a lot of cases, yes it does have its benefits, a lot of times its just not good for both the family and mentally Ill person. A violent mentally Ill person will be violent regardless of their ambient, and they should be in a safe ambient where people are trained to be able to deal with it as quickly and harmless as possible. Permanently Ill people that have adverse conditions that make them stay indoors always should be in hospital, not locked up at home with whoever is free to watch over them.
    • Taking Care 24h/d is EXPENSIVE. Poor people can't afford the medication, let alone either pay someone or stop working to permanently take care of their sick family member. It's also very very exhausting mentally and physically.
    • Average people aren't trained to be able to deal with mental Diseases. We don't trust random people on the street to be able to treat us if we have cancer. We want specialists. Why do we believe the average person can handle a mentally ill person? As anedoctal evidence, my family has three doctors and my uncle is schizophrenic. Neither of the three doctor have actually much of an idea how to handle or treat him because they're not psychiatrists. So they chuck this uncle with my retired grandparents who only have a high school diploma because they have free time. And guess what? These two old people can't actually handle him when he's having a bad episode or even a particularly bad day.
    • Temporary Care doesn't solve the issue for a lot of people. Anyone that worked with homeless people know that you can intern them, make them something for a few weeks and arrange everything for them to try a better life. But if they're mentally ill, almost always there will be a relapse because that's how mental diseases are, and suddenly they will be in the street again. A similar logic can be applied to chronically violent criminals that need constant medication and observation.
    • Mental Asylums don't have to be bad. The stigma is there and it's powerful all over the world, but a century and a half or so ago hospitals we're almost deathtraps, completely anti-hygienic, crawling with diseases and no one followed proper procedures. Prisons used slave labour and violence was the norm, the way and the end, while prisoners often starved. Things got better, and if we see mental Asylums as hospitals and preventive measures and not punishment, with an active and observant society, things could be much better.

    Since this is also the theme of my graduation thesis, I would appreciate a lot any research or interesting articles people could bring. Hell, if you know your country's laws regarding it, I'm interested. PM if you don't want to derail the thread.
  2. Sauce Bauss

    Sauce Bauss Headmaster DLP Supporter

    Apr 4, 2008
    I'm broadly of a mind with you, Invictus. The burden of long term medical care mentally and financially is horrendous, and that's before talking about it being someone who has mental issues. Love is not a suitable replacement for therapy. When the burden grows to be too large either emotionally or financially, homelessness is near inevitable.

    When you consider the amount of resources that go toward mitigating homelessness(as regards the mentally ill) and its secondary effects, biting the bullet and taking them into state care is one of the only palatable solutions. If we rely on families as we do now, many of the mentally ill end up homeless. If we treat the symptom, we do nothing to address the chronic condition and relapse is the result. We could do nothing and wait for them to do us the favor of dying out, but that's not exactly acceptable and there will always be more. The only rational and humane option is clear, in my opinion.

    One thing that has always bothered me about the
    gun debate
    is the conversation about mental health. If mental health is a problem, then let's fund some solutions for it. Using it as a shield without advocating for real solutions is cowardice.
  3. 13thadaption

    13thadaption Seventh Year DLP Supporter

    Jun 5, 2008
    Not the Hammer
    I'm in Canada, and I have a severely autistic second cousin who recently had to be taken into a care facility. At 15 she was just physically too big for my aunt or cousin to look after. It was heartbreaking for everyone involved, but she is actually doing better with the kind of routine and supervision the program can provide. I'm not sure how bad the dearth of similar institutions is in the States, but it was certainly a resource we were all grateful for.

    So I essentially agree that it's not a bad idea. Do I trust the Trump administration to come up with something effective and responsible? Hell no, I expect them to blow smoke so they don't have to talk about guns. Even if they tried to actually address the issue, given their history with appointees they'd find someone who still believes in lobotomies to put in charge.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018