I want to thank the readers who are coming by regularly, and apologize for the light posting these working days. And then there’s the whole issue of content, when I do manage to bang one out, not sure if I should apologize for the thematic scope, but what the hell, I’m sorry if this is supposed to be an advocacy blog on mental illness, if it appears your interests aren’t always represented I can assure you every word I write is inspired, which might become more apparent if you’d be a little more receptive to the intuitive slant deployed herein, Faithless.
So apologies aren’t my strong suit, sorry, let’s move on. It looks like the Texas Youth Commission will define this legislative session, and that’s a good thing if it gets people thinking about child abuse, mental illness and captive populations. I don’t know how to measure the impact one scandal can have on the laws to come out of a single session, don’t know if it’s possible to embarrass Texas into reform or if that’s just wishful thinking, but I see the mainstream media holding our lawmaker’s feet to the fire on a daily basis, and I see hints of consciousness raising brought about by the TYC investigations, but who knows? The discourse is always enlightening, so what.
Yesterday I heard an expert witness tell the human services committee that the effects of child abuse are irreversible. That is why we must stop concentrating on child abuse intervention, she said, and craft legislation around prevention.
I’ll bite. What are these interventions of which she speaks? Oh there’s stuff we do to flatter ourselves and she was right to admit it’s always too late for that particular kid on who’s behalf we’re intervening, and I’ll always have the learning disabilities to prove her point. The effects of child abuse are indeed irreversible, but we ought to get clear on how those effects manifest, and then I have to ask what prevention would look like.
How can you prevent a crime that hasn’t been committed? This is just wrong on so many levels, and I say that as a textbook case of child abuse with all dogs in this fight, but I’m an American textbook case of child abuse, meaning civil liberties for all til necessity dictates otherwise.
We must prove evidence of harm before we encroach on liberties with our stock, half-assed, bureaucratic and too-late-for-you interventions. There is no way around this. And the absurdity of our interventionist policies plays out in actuality — the most dysfunctional families know you’re onto them and isolate from the larger society so they can commit their evil in secrecy. Their children are indoctrinated toward maintaining distance and encouraged to be social misfits, taught to avoid mixing with regular people who just won’t understand your special relationship with daddy. Who wants to look at that? Tell me, who. If there’s a plan for invisible people I’d like to see it.
Then there’s that son-of-a-bitch scientologist keeps popping up I’ve been stalking in high heels and derision. Who testifies without ever copping to being one of them, but merely describes himself as executive director of the local chapter of Citizens Commission on Human Rights. He’s beating the pants off the psychiatry lobby, and I say that reluctantly as a friend of psychiatrists, disgruntled, sure, but hey, I wouldn’t take the pomo pro-stabby inclinations too seriously, honest, I want psychiatry to be better, a consumer driven, best practices, evidence based mutually rewarding cake and ice cream partnership, I don’t want it to go away.
That’s what I tell myself day after day while listening to the lobbyists, cringing in shame for them. The concerns of psychiatrists boil down to two words: market expansion. Holding the line, without apology and come what may. Their adversaries approach the mike and inwardly I thank god for helping. The fact that their adversaries are scientologists should tell you how truly fucked we are.