This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Comment

← 'Psycho killer'? The Jared Lee Loughner case brings out the usual abuse

hungarianelephant's Avatar Jump to comment 28 by hungarianelephant

Comment 26 by Mark Jones :

Palin responds to the accusations, with rather bizarre choice of words.

Have you ever heard any public statement from Palin that could not be described as "bizarre"?

Anywaaaay - the point I was going to make is that I just don't see the supposed demonisation. It seems a reasonable inference that someone who goes on a shooting spree is not in his right mind, and can be fairly described as "crazy". How exactly does this imply that all "crazy" people are violent potential mass-murderers? It's surely obvious to everyone that there are lots of mentally ill people around and very few of them ever kill anyone.

It's perfectly sensible to point out that the mentally ill are more likely to be the victims of violence than the instigators, that they are much more likely to be homeless, imprisoned, drug addicts or all three, that the standard of mental health care in most countries is woeful, and that there is a general lack of public understanding of the implications of mental health problems. All these things are true, and by any reasonable standard they are far more urgent social issues than most of the ones that governments obsess over. What I can't see is how not speculating about the mental health of gunmen is supposed to make the slightest difference.

Wed, 12 Jan 2011 14:53:43 UTC | #577175