[ExI] A Small Request [was Re: Impressive book: Farewell toAlms]

spike spike66 at att.net
Fri Feb 8 05:59:28 UTC 2008

> [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of hkhenson
> Subject: Re: [ExI] A Small Request [was Re: Impressive book: 
> Farewell toAlms]
> At 07:58 PM 2/7/2008, spike wrote:
> snip
> >The whole notion of holding people in an asylum against 
> their will... How do  you feel 
> >about being locked in an asylum for these beliefs?
> spike, do you actually know of any situations like this?

No, it is illegal, fortunately.  Probably I should have worded it as "locked
up for weird beliefs," which was theoretically possible in the bad old days.

> >...There is no way to know for sure which are dangerous 
> crazy and which just have crazy ideas.
> I don't think you would have any problem sorting them out.
> Keith

Ja, but the problem isn't primarily in sorting them out.  In the bad old
days, people could be committed maliciously, in order to sieze their
property for instance, or prevent them from leading a political campaign.  I
can imagine a plenty of elderly people were committed by their own children
in order to speed up the inheritance, or to prevent an unfortunate (for the
offspring) union.  Even today, you can find old people who will say things
like "if I were to take up with that young waitress, my children would have
me committed."  

I find it odd that whenever people refer to the closing of mental
institutions in the 60s and 70s, it is almost always considered a bad thing.
They didn't make the patients leave.  They merely realized they hadn't the
legal authority to make them stay.



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