D.Rabbit, on Dec 8 2006, 10:37 AM, said:
Those who commit premeditated murder have a screw loose, they should be examined to find out why? They are actually a natural resource that we can study to find out what makes them tick and be able to identify it as a possibility before it becomes acute in the next to go in their direction.
It's called profiling, but I want to take one step farther and to find out what part of the brain is responsible for this type of action.
We already know that there is an area of the brain that can detect sarcasm, for example. Those who have damage in that area truly need people to wear emoticon cards on their foreheads so they can pick up the sarcasm.
The same with sociopaths? one might conjecture.
If we can zero in and correct a physical flaw or chemical imbalance that might have caused their actions then we owe it to ourselves to do so in the name of protecting others.
Let's look at the mother, if she did have post partem depression, this can be tested by the level of hormones in her body and there is no reason why she would not have been suspect if a simple blood test was administered at her first check up after giving birth. The fact that this testing is not practiced does nothing to alert us to possible problems ahead. So in essence, we failed her and the child by not providing proper medical assistance, since post partem depression is a know factor in most cases of infanticide.
You assume a lot. For instance, you assume that a person cannot act in a deliberately evil fashion, and I don't believe that's true - I've met some truly vile people who deliberately make harmful choices.
I believe some people can be rehabilitated, but prisons are filled with repeat offenders who got caught and went out and did the same thing all over again - whether from stupidity, greed or whatever.
As for parents who murder their own children, you can either lock them up in a loony bin for life or execute them for all of me. Same goes for parents who molest their children. There's no crime more heinous crime than harming a child, IMO. I would prefer that no one who commits such an act be allowed to be free to do it again.
When I was younger I might have agreed with you. I've seen too many evil people free to walk in the world. I see the results of parental abuse every day at work. It would make your blood run cold to hear a preschooler talk about being beaten with a belt when they're doing the unit to help children identify different types of clothing.
And the really sad thing is that this child thought being beaten regularly (he often comes to school black and blue) was normal.
One of the bad things about the whole postpartum depression thing is that too many women have gotten off for abusing or murdering their babies on the grounds they were crazy. There was a lot less of this going on when I was a kid, and I'm pretty sure it's because the perpetrators were punished to the full extent of the law, and postpartum depression was not an acceptable excuse for violence against children (or anybody else).
Now we feel sorry for them instead of their murdered children. Something is not right with this picture. I prefer to grieve for the victims instead of let off the perpetrators.
I agree with you that postpartum depression should be treated, and promptly. But mothers should also be aware that postpartum depression is not an excuse for violent behavior, and we haven't been sending that message for some time.
Edited to add: I know this woman isn't claiming PPD, but I still wanted to comment on the idea that criminals are simply mentally ill. Some are. Many are in their right minds and still choose to commit crimes.
I had no problem with Andrea Yates, who had a long history of mental illness, being institutionalized - and she was seriously mentally ill and was clearly not sane when she killed her children.
Edited by Rhea, 09 December 2006 - 04:19 PM.