John Oliver on America’s mentally ill
Plus a qualification. . .
The very concept of mental illness remains a fraught subject for discourse, both for those to whom the term is applied and for those making the application.
Historically, stigmatizing labels have often been used to punish, banish, and even kill and used to incite mob violence. Just as a weed is a plant out of place, to quote my favorite college prof, so many of today’s mentally ill may be people who would fit comfortably into now-vanished societal niches where they wouldn’t be considered other than normal. And in the inverse conditions, men and women who once were considered sexual deviants and now joining the societal mainstream and are courted by advertisers.
Consider a mental illness diagnosis reported by the New York Times:
In 1851, Dr. Samuel A. Cartwright, a Louisiana surgeon and psychologist, filed a report in the New Orleans Medical and…
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