Madness as Moral Metaphor

http://www.henrydampier.com/2015/04/unhappy-mad-soft-moderns/

…What Thomas Szasz uncovered was that mental illnesses are better understood as metaphors for moral illness than as conventional illnesses like cancer and appendicitis. As progressives change the moral structure of society, the quasi-scientific notions of what is healthy and what is ill must also change….

That link includes this;

Properly speaking, contends Szasz, insanity is not a disease with origins to be excavated, but a behavior with meanings to be decoded. Social existence is a rule-governed game-playing ritual in which the mad person bends the rules and exploits the loopholes. Since the mad person is engaged in social performances that obey certain expectations so as to defy others, the pertinent questions are not about the origins, but about the conventions, of insanity.

That’s a very nurture-based way of looking at it, the PC lot should be delighted. Alas, that allots them responsibility for their actions, and the refutes the rationale behind claiming mental illness – absolving personal responsibility, the way others used to do with sins.

This idea washes with what I’ve witnessed.

Back to HD;

…It’s easy to blame the birth control pill for your own sexual incontinence, but much harder to confess your own willful sins. The fat man is more likely to blame Nabisco for making Oreo creme cookies so delicious rather than to look into his own gluttony, sloth, and intemperance. …

We have children in the bodies of adults. All the rights, none of the responsibility. It’s called extended adolescence, and better thought of as a form of Peter Pan Syndrome. [women ‘suffer’ it too]

There is a lot of sweeping under the rug. Promiscuity is still a sign of psychopathy. Homosexuality is often accompanied with a low impulse control, a resultant inability to be monogamous and multiple fetishes, which grow worse and more extreme over time. Everyone knows by now the HIV and suicide rates among transsexuals.

We seem to ignore our own common law. The age of criminal responsibility is none at all. If they come up with a good excuse, like a child to a teacher, they can be let off. Naturally, they hide behind the medical model, and play victim. What else can they do, change? I blame the Nanny State for part of this. It infantilises adults for the sake of their health. The problem has multiple prongs.

In a biological sense, these people are either human, with responsibility for themselves, or inhuman, and undeserving of their rights accordingly. Dangerous line of thought? Perhaps. Tell that to the prefrontal cortex studies detailing the impulse control and rational decision making that living in a civilized society demands.

4 responses to “Madness as Moral Metaphor

  1. a simplified view … i’m sure we can just change the gene variants associated with schizophrenia that are passed down from generation to generation through behavior modification? Doesn’t sound like a moral illness to me .. sounds like a genetic disease.

1. Be civil. 2. Be logical or fair. 3. Do not bore me.

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