Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Beyond irate

The bitch did it. Andrea Yates murdered her five kids and got away with it using the insanity defense. That makes me beyond irate for several reasons.

  • Because this was such a high profile case, it will only serve to increase the stigma about mental illness. Many people, out of fear and ignorance, will now believe that we are all potential murderers.
  • How does anyone believe she was insane while she committed the murders when she had the clarity of mind to know she'd done something incredibly wrong afterwards so she called 911 and reported it?
  • She has a good possibility of being released, while her children are forever dead.
  • I know first hand what it is like to suffer postpartum psychosis. Despite all the psychotic episodes where killing myself and/or my baby seemed as normal as eating breakfast, I never lost the ability to differentiate between right and wrong.

Justice has not been served; and it's not fair to those poor children that both their lives and deaths be desecrated by the ignorance of the judicial system and that of the jurors chosen for this case. I firmly believe the bitch should have been found guilty but mentally ill. She should have been sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole, and be given psychiatric care behind bars.

As I listened to the news, while they were waiting for the verdict to be read, one of the questions the reporter asked was how long will she be remanded to a state psychiatric hospital. While the legal expert said she would probably be incarcerated for a quite awhile, she could essentially get better and be released in no time. If her diagnosis is postpartum psychosis, it doesn't last forever. Once the hormones return to their normal levels, the psychosis usually disappears, something that has probably already happened since it has been a number of years since she gave birth.

I'm sure she's depressed now over the loss of her children. Hopefully she's riddled with guilt over it. But I don't see her as being mentally ill enough to stay in state custody for very long. This amounts to a slap on the wrist for murder. How many more women will try and succeed at using this defense? How many already have?


Blogger moonlightwriter said...

This case has always been unnerving to me. How could anyone SANE do that to not one, not two, but ALL FIVE children, one after the other like that?? I just can't fathom it. Insane or not at the time she did those horrific acts, she needs to be punished. Murderers belong in jail. They do not belong in mental institutions where they can potentially harm others.

3:42 PM, July 26, 2006  
Blogger Maggs said...

no doubt. she did it. her state of mind, who knows. there are sick fuckers out there.

but i like your post. i never thought of it from this angle...the stigma.

10:01 PM, July 26, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, this makes me sick. She just seems so pitiful and shes a woman, I suppose that has a lot to do with it , theres no way a man would ever get away with this. But for some reason people just find it too hard to believe that a mother is capable of something this horrible.
A lot of women have gotten off on the insanity plea and I'm sure after this insane verdict there will be a lot more getting off in the future. Its sickens me.

9:21 AM, July 27, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That was my comment, sorry I forgot to sign it.


9:22 AM, July 27, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As there's such a in-built psychological and social barrier when it comes to killing (particularly one's own), I think that anyone who deliberately crosses over that line has to be mentally disturbed or not in their right mind in some way, irrespective of what functional parts there are of the personality at the time.

What happened is a tragic loss of lives, but I honestly don't believe that this woman could be deemed mentally fit by any stretch of the imagination and I personally don't see a stigma in this woman's mental incapacity ... I see it more as a case of someone somehow psychologically well and truly unhinged and what happened is unfortunately the result of this woman's unhinged mental state.

But I can see how the public at large would then view anyone with mental health issues with suspicion and how those with MH issues can in that sense be stigmatised by the unhinged actions of this woman (and other people with MH problems who have committed violent acts), but I don't think anything can be done about that apart from stressing that the vast majority of ppl with MH problems DON'T commit murder etc ... and, of course, ensuring there are adequate supports within communities to pick up on and manage mental and social problems that people may have.

11:11 AM, July 27, 2006  

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