Sanism in Media and Discourse

Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 09 Oct 2020, 19:55

This thing started with an honest attempt by me to help you improve your articel's weakest point (the vagueness of "evil")

Why is that the article's weakest point when (as I explained) how to define evil has nothing to do with the premise of the article? It honestly doesn't matter whether you define evil as racism, or theft, or Communism, or smoking weed. No matter how you slice it, whatever it is you think of as evil, none of it is exclusively something that mentally ill people do.

You mentioned pedophilia "or worse". Honestly, I can't think of a single thing directly influenced by mental illness that's worse than child sex abuse, and even that isn't exclusively perpetrated by mentally ill people (pedophiles, in this case). But if you believe that discriminating against pedophiles prevents CSA, I would vehemently disagree. What prevents pedophiles from committing CSA is therapy, which is only less likely to be sought out by pedophiles if being found to be a pedophile will lead to discrimination. The only things that should be penalized are CSA and anything which encourages or reinforces CSA. There's a massive difference between banning things like child pornography and lolicon, which is a societal good, and discriminating against mentally ill people, which is a societal harm. Note the difference: one aims to stop evil acts, one aims to punish people only for who they are, regardless of how they act. There is also a huge difference between ostracizing pedophiles who try to redefine pedophilia as "just an orientation" rather than a mental illness, because that is an action that causes societal harm (and, importantly, which non-pedophiles in theory could participate in, as unlikely as it is); and ostracizing all pedophiles regardless of what they say or do.

That's the point. You don't discriminate against mentally ill people. You stop the wrong, either by taking dangerous tools away (e.g. gun control or bans on sexual material depicting minors), or with social programs (e.g. universal healthcare that covers mental healthcare, incidentally something the country I live in severely lacks).

EDIT: On a side note, I should mention, since I'm saying things about CSA, that I actually was a victim of CSA, and I know for a fact that the perpetrator wasn't and isn't a pedophile or mentally ill in any way.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 09 Oct 2020, 22:17

Hmm, yes fully agreed that "evil" isn't something that is done exclusively by mentally ill people. But the article is weak in the sense that it is a quite "hand wavy" in basically just saying that "evil" is something that "evil people" do. But a lot of the approaches to explain what "evil" actually is (Note: not my opinion) is that these "evil people" are all mentally ill, thus just saying that this isn't the case without offering any credible alternative explanation for "evil", yet insisting that "evil" exists, makes it a weak point. I personally think "evil" doesn't exists at all and is rather a mental shortcut if you don't want to deal with the complex topic of intrinsic motivations and yes to a limited extend also mental illness. Making a similar argument to that would make your article better I think.

I meant: distort your argument as "a supporter of a laissez faire approach to pedophiles (or worse)" that I could even make the worse claim you are yourself a pedophile that just fronts this argument about ASPD to get a free pass from society yourself. BUT I AM NOT DOING THAT, because similar to accusing a German of being a secret genocidal Nazi, that would be highly offensive.

I am sorry to hear that you yourself had to experience CSA. If you want we can drop that topic. I was just a bit upset and tried to make you understand why. And yes as you explain above, the topic of pedophiles is a complex one, and I never claimed that it is only pedophiles that sometimes do CSA.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 09 Oct 2020, 23:33

thus just saying that this isn't the case without offering any credible alternative explanation for "evil", yet insisting that "evil" exists, makes it a weak point.

That's not what the article does. There are only two places where the concept of evil is mentioned:

Similarly, it is commonplace to use casual language to attribute evil, irrationality, malice, and negativity in general to mental illness. A simple and common example is when a bad situation is described as "crazy" or "insane", or when someone doing evil is described as a "lunatic" or a "psychopath".

But it's an idea that we all must deprogram from our brains, because this idea is unscientific and directly leads to discrimination against innocent mentally ill people. It also leads to evil people being held less accountable than they should be. The fact of the matter is, most mentally ill people are not evil (in fact, mentally ill people are much more likely to be victims of violence rather than perpetrators), and most evil people are not mentally ill or in any way neurodivergent.

Nothing in here argues either for or against the philosophical question of whether evil "really" exists. Evil is a subjective concept relating to morals. Defined by Merriam-Webster: "morally reprehensible : sinful, wicked"; "arising from actual or imputed bad character or conduct"; "causing harm : pernicious". It's a real word. What counts as evil is 100% subjective and must be subjective because if I pick one particular thing that I consider to be evil (capitalism, for instance), the point I'm trying to make won't come across properly.

"Evil" is a neutral term; it is not innately sanist. The only way anyone could ascribe "evil" to mental illness is because of sanism: a belief, whether explicit or implicit, that mental illness makes someone innately morally reprehensible, of bad character, or harmful. Trying to get around that by finding some thing that's universally agreed upon to be evil won't work both because that would probably be impossible, and because anyone convinced that mentally ill people aren't the cause of specific evil thing X is not necessarily going to also accept that they aren't the cause of specific evil thing Y, if X was specifically what was focused on. Everything that might be considered evil has to be included, and the only way to do that is to say "evil" and let the reader decide what that means.

I meant: distort your argument as "a supporter of a laissez faire approach to pedophiles (or worse)" that I could even make the worse claim you are yourself a pedophile that just fronts this argument about ASPD to get a free pass from society yourself.

I mean, if you wanted to claim that I have an ulterior motive, you wouldn't have to go anywhere near that far, because of course I have an ulterior motive: I want to be treated fairly by society. I'm not a pedophile but we are plainly mentally ill, most likely a mix of BPD and something that manifests as AvPD for Layla and PPD for me. We might even have OSDD, and we suspect we probably have OCD as well. So yes, we're trying to educate people about sanism because it benefits us (i.e. this is self-advocacy). But only sanism could make that into a bad thing, just like how self-advocacy of any other minority can only considered bad because of bigotry against that minority group.

BUT I AM NOT DOING THAT, because similar to accusing a German of being a secret genocidal Nazi, that would be highly offensive.

I agree that you didn't do that, and I didn't accuse you of being a Nazi. If you believe I did, double-check my posts. I said that what you were saying was sanist, which it was. Considering that the article this is about specifically says that sanism is not your fault, this should not be offensive to hear.

The reason the Nazis were brought up is because, being German, I'm confident that you've learned a lot about the atrocities of the Nazis, probably more so than most Americans have (Americans being the people who constantly claim that Hitler was a socialist). And considering Nazism is literally illegal where you live, I'm reasonably confident that you would agree that Nazism is deplorable. Pointing out that some of the stuff you were saying was incredibly similar to Nazi rhetoric (and KKK rhetoric, and the rhetoric of pretty much any hateful group) was therefore not an implication that you're a "secret Nazi", it was a suggestion to introspect and actually think about why you think the things that you do.

Which is also why I was asking for a source. Because regardless of your intentions the things you were saying about people with ASPD were violently sanist, and where the beliefs which led to this rhetoric come from matters, regardless of whether or not you personally take that to an evil conclusion. Extremists are emboldened by apologists.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 10 Oct 2020, 00:36

Ok I accept that you didn't mean to call me a secret Nazi, but it sure sounded a lot like it when you implied my argument was the same as those of Nazis and other similar genocidal groups. And I strongly object to that.

I also do not see how you can call me violently *anything* or emboldening extremists, when my very argument rests on non-violence and moderation.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 10 Oct 2020, 01:00

onpon4 {l Wrote}:Nothing in here argues either for or against the philosophical question of whether evil "really" exists.

Exactly, but maybe it should. You seem to intentionally not bring up that topic then. But you reference "evil people" as some sort of given thing several times in your article, which makes the reader wonder what exactly that is supposed to be.
If you don't want to discuss in your article what kind of motivations people might have for doing "evil" things (which is indeed at a risk of getting widely off topic for your article), I think it would be better to not bring up such a concept at all and then leave it undefined.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 10 Oct 2020, 01:31

Sanism is violent if it threatens the human rights or safety of mentally ill or otherwise neurodivergent people. Claiming that sanist discrimination as in the status quo is necessary is therefore violent on two counts: it reinforces the practice of taking away the human rights of mentally ill people (especially children) "for their own good", and it encourages unjust physical aggression (typically perpetrated by police) against mentally ill people who don't "behave" according to societal expectations (by which I mean exhibiting behaviors which are atypical, but not dangerous to anyone, like not showing an "appropriate" facial expression in response to an event).

For example:

But what do you think would happen if people with certain types of ASPD would not be discriminated against? I have strong doubts that some of them are not a real danger to society... I am open to suggestions how else society should interact with such people, but I think just letting them do as they please will not work due to the specific effect of their mental illness.


This quote might seem benign to you. I can't read your mind, so I assume this wasn't your intent. However, this kind of statement is harmful to those it's in reference to (in this case, those with ASPD), because it directly supports the idea that people with ASPD are a danger to society, strongly implies that discrimination against them that they currently face is both just and necessary, and refers to people with ASPD in a very detached manner not unlike how one might refer to wild animals.

If you don't want to discuss in your article what kind of motivations people might have for doing "evil" things (which is indeed at a risk of getting widely off topic for your article), I think it would be better to not bring up such a concept at all and then leave it undefined.

I'm honestly not sure what you're suggesting here. That entire paragraph you're referencing simply can't exist without referencing evil, or a substitute. "Evil" is the most general term possible ("bad" would be a valid choice too, but it means exactly the same thing in this context).
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 10 Oct 2020, 09:35

onpon4 {l Wrote}:This quote might seem benign to you. I can't read your mind, so I assume this wasn't your intent. However, this kind of statement is harmful to those it's in reference to (in this case, those with ASPD), because it directly supports the idea that people with ASPD are a danger to society, strongly implies that discrimination against them that they currently face is both just and necessary, and refers to people with ASPD in a very detached manner not unlike how one might refer to wild animals.


First off, thanks for getting back to arguing about this in a civilized way.

I understand that you might consider the above harmful, but your stance on the topic is taking an extreme theoretical rights based approach that leaves no nuance in the practical approach to managing a mental health issue. This might be the right strategy to raise awarenes on a topic, but it is interllectually dishonest (unless you truely believe people with ASPD are not ill) and if it was actually implemented like that would cause a lot of collateral damage and hurt a lot of innocent people.

I am not at all claiming that *all* people with ASPD are a danger to society, but you can't honestly deny the huge body of past evidence that shows that many people that did comitt crimes and other hurtful behaviour have been show to have symtoms of variing degrees of ASPD (i.e. it is correlated).

And public policy and general behaviour of society is always by necessity driven by probabilities and correlations. This of course often clashes with a rights based minority protecting legal system, but exactly this interplay of two opposing approaches shapes modern society.

If you want, call this detached, and yes when talking about human *populations* (as opposed to individuals), then it is indeed quite similar to animal populations. But most such policy is aimed to maximing the well being of the maximum number of people and is thus actually the most humane and compassionate approach one can take.

Now, I think discrimination is the ugly twin of the above humane public good maximising policy. If those in charge choses to ignore certain issues or take an extreme rights based approach (amounting often to the same) then people often turn to discrimination to "solve" their percived problems. This is not the preferred outcome of course, but it is even still the lesser evil as discrimination is usually a relative mild form of response, that still allows those effected a relativly normal life in most cases.

Thus to summarize, I believe if you ostracize people advocating for a moderate correlation based public good maximizing strategy to a public health issue, you are in fact increasing and not reducing the likelyhood of discrimination.
And in the more common case that there isn't a efficient public health strategy and people are already mostly using discrimination to deal with what they percieve as a problem, then takeing an extreme rights based approach is opening the door wide for populist public policy makers to implement truly inhumane "solutions" such as locking away all people with ASPD in mental health wards and prisions. Please note that this is not theoretical, but actually already happening in many places around the world right now as high incarceration rates of people with ASPD shows.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 10 Oct 2020, 17:14

First off, thanks for getting back to arguing about this in a civilized way.

I didn't just "become more civilized". You gave a specific example, and that gave me an opportunity to actually discuss what you're talking about without having to make guesses as to what you meant.

I understand that you might consider the above harmful, but your stance on the topic is taking an extreme theoretical rights based approach that leaves no nuance in the practical approach to managing a mental health issue. This might be the right strategy to raise awarenes on a topic, but it is interllectually dishonest (unless you truely believe people with ASPD are not ill) and if it was actually implemented like that would cause a lot of collateral damage and hurt a lot of innocent people.

This doesn't make sense. Consider: people with influenza are proven to be a danger to others in the sense that they can spread the disease to others. We don't imprison people with influenza based on this, though. We would only ever imprison someone because of a physical illness (mandatory quarantine) if the threat to others is clearly, based on the evidence, both impossible to prevent by more humane means and deadly. With the exception of pedophilia, I can't think of a single mental illness that's even as directly harmful as that. Most of the time the harm a mental illness can cause to society is no worse than the common cold, and if we took away the rights of people with the common cold to "protect" society, the only thing that might stop you from being appalled by that is because the common cold is temporary.

Mental illness is not temporary. It's usually impossible to "cure" a mental illness, and it's usually inhumane to try to do that against the person's will because the respective mental illnesses are a part of who we are. Attempting to "cure" them when we don't want that, therefore, is effectively a form of mind control. This is just one reason why most autistic self-advocates consider Autism Speaks to be a hate group.

So I'm afraid I disagree, refusing to take away the rights of people with ASPD does not require believing that they are not ill. It merely requires believing that whatever damage the illness may cause does not justify taking away their human rights. Namely, it's not a death sentence for those around the person with ASPD. That's why, as I said before, if you can't prove both that people with ASPD cause grave harm to others with utmost confidence, and you can prove that there is no other possible way to prevent the harm, discrimination is not an acceptable approach.

As mentioned, pedophilia has met the burden of proof for leading to harm, but we know of therapeutic interventions that prevent said harm without taking away the human rights of pedophiles.

I don't believe ASPD has met the burden of proof for leading to harm. It's not even clear what sort of harm they would cause because of their mental illness.

I am not at all claiming that *all* people with ASPD are a danger to society, but you can't honestly deny the huge body of past evidence that shows that many people that did comitt crimes and other hurtful behaviour have been show to have symtoms of variing degrees of ASPD (i.e. it is correlated).

I don't see why not, because again, you've yet to provide a source. But regarding crime, crime is not necessarily harm. Crime also includes things like illicit drug use/possession, sleeping on a bench, or petty theft. Criminal prosecution also does not necessarily mean that a group is actually more criminal than another group, evidenced by the massive racial bias the U.S. criminal justice has against black people (it's been proven that a black man tried for the same crime as a white man will get on average more jail time than the white man). So even if criminal prosecution is correlated with ASPD (which seems to be the case, at least in the U.K., though I can't verify because I haven't seen the source Wikipedia cites), that doesn't necessarily mean that people with ASPD are causing more harm, and even if they really are causing more harm, there are other factors to take into account regarding the correlation between ASPD and whatever harm that may be (e.g. society treating you like a monster is likely to make you into a monster, or perhaps they're just more prone to falling for reactionary right-wing rhetoric; again, I don't know and can't know without thinking of a specific kind of harm that people with ASPD have been demonstrated to cause).

But most such policy is aimed to maximing the well being of the maximum number of people

I would contest that. The usual justification for taking away the rights of mentally ill people is either that it's "for their own good" (in which case e.g. mentally ill children can be forced to live under possibly abusive parents and lose all of their human rights for no reason, possibly for the rest of their lives), or that they're inferior (see eugenics with the Supreme Court saying that "three generations of imbeciles is enough" as a justification for forced sterilization of an innocent person), or that they used the "insanity defense" in court when prosecuted for a crime (which is a case of "pick your poison": either go to a jail and possibly face grave danger because of your mental illness and abusive prison guards, and possibly risk getting killed by the state if you live in a jurisdiction which practices the death penalty; or get forcibly committed to a mental institution you may never get out of unless it decides that you can).

Now, I think discrimination is the ugly twin of the above humane public good maximising policy.

Again I would contest that. What you call "humane public good maximizing policy" is essentially taking away the human rights of people "for their own good". Mentally ill people are often effectively owned by others (initially their parents, who may even be abusive parents). This isn't humane, it's a legalized form of slavery, and it's also discriminatory.

Incidentally, "for their own good" was the same justification that slave owners in the United States used for preserving their "peculiar institution".

If those in charge choses to ignore certain issues or take an extreme rights based approach (amounting often to the same) then people often turn to discrimination to "solve" their percived problems. This is not the preferred outcome of course, but it is even still the lesser evil as discrimination is usually a relative mild form of response, that still allows those effected a relativly normal life in most cases.

Thus to summarize, I believe if you ostracize people advocating for a moderate correlation based public good maximizing strategy to a public health issue, you are in fact increasing and not reducing the likelyhood of discrimination.

I'm confused by this statement. Can you give an example of what discrimination people not in charge will "turn to"? Because if you're talking about businesses discriminating against patrons then that can be protected against with things like the Americans with Disabilities Act.

And in the more common case that there isn't a efficient public health strategy and people are already mostly using discrimination to deal with what they percieve as a problem, then takeing an extreme rights based approach is opening the door wide for populist public policy makers to implement truly inhumane "solutions" such as locking away all people with ASPD in mental health wards and prisions. Please note that this is not theoretical, but actually already happening in many places around the world right now as high incarceration rates of people with ASPD shows.

Um, this is another reasonably apt description of the status quo. So the status quo is not humane. Exactly what humane things do you think are happening to "deal with" people with ASPD if as you say (and I also mentioned above), mentally ill people are being routinely imprisoned and losing all of their human rights?
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 10 Oct 2020, 20:25

First of all, we seem to have vastly different estimates of how damaging sociopathy is to society. While very hard to proof, there are quite some indications such as the high number of imprisoned people with ASPD (sorry but the completely broken US prison and police system is can't be generalized to other places), that make me believe the overall damage caused is probably even higher than that of pedophiles. This of course happens on a different level and is usually much less severe on a individual level than CSA, but the total negative impact of society is probably highly significant. Yes this might be wrong, but it should give you an idea why I think it is vital to manage this mental health issue. You can of course now say show me the proof for that, but that simply doesn't exist (nor does a proof of the opposite exist) as it is nowhere near as easy to study as other health issues.

So taking that in mind, the common flu argument falls short and it should rather be compared to Covid-19 or something like that, and yes we very much limit the human rights of people sick with these severe illnesses. However I don't really like this analogy, as obviously ASPD is not contagious and this is the main reason why in the case of viral infections these severe measures are justified. The measures to be taken are anyways completely different, so again the analogy doesn't really work.

As discrimination... in my view discrimination is not something that the government does or which is official public policy. Yes, those can also be injust and people often call unjust policy discriminating, but overall those really are a different issue (see further below).
Typical discrimination happens between individuals or groups and is very much personal. Take for example a landlord refusing to rent to a person because they came to know that person is mentally ill. From the perspective of the landlord this solves the perceived problem, but from the perspective of the person that is mentally ill it is of course discriminating. Or take a group of neighbors that start to harass a family that has a mentally ill child because they of some perceived problem with it; once the family moves somewhere else that problem is "solved" from the perspective of the persons doing the discrimination. These things are ugly, but they work in some twisted way and satisfy most peoples desire to deal with their perceived issue.

However, if you enforce a extreme rights based approach to prevent this kind of discrimination and do not offer some other satisfying (and hopefully more humane) solution to manage what these people perceive as a problem, they tend to get really upset and as a result harsh laws and populist policies tend to arise that are *much* worse for the effected persons than the previous discrimination.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 10 Oct 2020, 21:38

While very hard to proof, there are quite some indications such as the high number of imprisoned people with ASPD (sorry but the completely broken US prison and police system is can't be generalized to other places) or the likely high number of people with ASDP working as investment bankers, that make me believe the overall damage caused is probably even higher than that of pedophiles.

OK, so then your source for believing that people with ASPD cause damage amounts to a hunch backed up by the fact that people with ASPD are over-represented in the prison system. I note what you said about people with ASPD as investment bankers: you said likely, i.e. this isn't a fact, it's just something that you believe.

It's true that the U.S. prison system is unusually bad, but the ultimate reason for what happens to black people in the U.S. is racism, which is far worse in the U.S. than many other parts of the world. This isn't because the U.S. is particularly special in this regard. Considering how universal sanism is, I don't see any reason for the effect of the U.S. criminal justice system to be any worse for people with ASPD than other parts of the world (or at least, other parts of the world influenced by European culture). And since things that I don't consider to be wrong or harmful (like stealing or destroying rich people's private property) are illegal in these other societies as well, I cannot accept high levels of imprisonment as a proxy for evilness or harm in any society. Without additional information, it fails to capture the full story. You also have to account for other factors that could lead to the outcome, as I mentioned.

So taking that in mind, the common flu argument falls short and it should rather be compared to Covid-19 or maybe Ebola

I strongly disagree unless you can provide some very clear evidence that a person having ASPD will regularly lead to death or other severe harm for other people (after controlling for other factors). Even the flu comparison is unfair to ASPD because flu does kill people. And there's also the fact that ASPD is lifelong, while nearly any illness brought about by a pathogen (with some exceptions, like herpes and HIV) goes away after a relatively short period of time.

In fact, that brings up an important point: diseases like herpes and HIV, which are lifelong, are probably a far more useful comparison. HIV can even lead to serious harm including death. But we don't ban people with HIV engaging in sexual activity, for instance, or imprison them in hospitals on the off-chance they accidentally infect someone else. We trust people with HIV to make the right decisions to protect their partners, and we help them do so e.g. by providing access to condoms.

In any case, the only reason we ever imprison a physically ill person, or otherwise take away their human rights, is (as with ebola or, at the moment, COVID-19) there is very, very good evidence that it's the only way to protect others, and we only do so for as long as is necessary to protect others. That's why flu - which, again, is a deadly disease - is not treated that way. It's why HIV - again, a deadly disease - is not treated that way. By contrast, COVID-19 is somewhat treated that way because we're in the middle of a pandemic (and therefore COVID-19 is especially harmful in the moment), and Ebola might be treated that way simply because there's no cure for Ebola and anyone who gets it is very likely to die no matter what is done. I would contend that, on this spectrum, ASPD and even pedophilia (which I contend is far more likely to be harmful than ASPD, since pedophilia creates a far more specific tendency to do a far more specific bad thing) are closer to the flu and HIV end of the spectrum, and I'm not aware of any mental illness that belongs on the COVID-19 and Ebola end of the spectrum.

in my view discrimination is not something that the government does or which is official public policy.

Erm, no, many governments specifically create allowances for taking away the rights of mentally ill people and allowing some other person to make that person's decisions. Claiming that this is not discrimination is rather like claiming that African slavery in the United States was not government discrimination because it was the slave owners who enacted power over the slaves. No, if the government specifically allows one person to take away the rights of another person, and it's based on the demographics of that other person, that's governmental discrimination. The fact that it's by proxy is not morally distinguishing.

Also, I mentioned this before, but practicing eugenics via forced sterilization is perfectly legal in the United States because of a Supreme Court ruling which stated that "three generations of imbeciles is enough". The practice is discriminatory (usually targeting mentally ill or otherwise neurodivergent people of color), and the fact that the government doesn't directly mandate it but "only" allows it doesn't make the government any less complicit when it's clear that forced sterilization is always a discriminatory practice.

However, if you enforce a extreme rights based approach to prevent this kind of discrimination and do not offer some other satisfying (and hopefully more humane) solution to manage what these people perceive as a problem, they tend to get really upset and as a result harsh laws and populist policies tend to arise that are *much* worse for the effected persons than the previous discrimination.

OK, let's go back into history here. Nazi Germany. The Weimar Republic did not enact sweeping protections of Jewish people that made Nazis angry. Jewish people were discriminated against very badly for decades, with the earliest concentration camps opening long before the Nazis rose to power. And the genocide itself started small, with forced sterilization of disabled people being one of the earliest examples of genocide in that time period.

There has never been a time in history when "too" progressive policies defending the rights of a minority has led to backlash that makes everything worse. Backlash tends to occur with sudden visibility of a minority that the general public was not thinking about. That's why violence against transgender people has become more prominent in the last couple decades: we didn't gain much of anything in the way of new rights and protections, we just became a hell of a lot more visible because we're managing to survive more easily (because of a removal of certain policies which, decades ago, made it basically impossible to be "approved" to transition without being very passing and completely straight).

The only thing that can ease the minds of bigots who want people they hate out of their sight is to hide them, or to kill them. That's why concentration camps exist; they hide what a bigoted society doesn't want to see, be that Jewish people in Nazi Germany, or Mexicans in the current United States, or Japanese people in the U.S. during WW2. But the experience of Nazi Germany shows that this does not work. Jewish people were discriminated against harshly in Weimar Germany, but it did absolutely nothing to stop the atrocities of the Nazi party. If anything, it enabled them.

EDIT: I also want to add one more tidbit: if society discriminates against mentally ill people with "measures", that enables the view that mentally ill people are a "problem". So I fully expect that they would create more discrimination and more violence against mentally ill people, not less, even if there weren't so much historical precedent (not only Nazi Germany, but the Jim Crow era in the U.S. also comes to mind) to support that conclusion.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 11 Oct 2020, 01:18

Yes I removed that part about investment bankers because I felt that would only further confuse the argument, but those do probably even more damage than the less "functional" sociopaths that end up mostly in prison. And no I don't think this has anything to do with Jews...

And as I said the analogy with viral infections doesn't work, so I am not sure why you further try to advance that argument along the same line just because I felt flu wasn't a severe enough illness in comparison. But for what is is worth: at least in Germany there have been several cases of people with HIV charged with attempted murder for having sexual intercourse with a non-infected person. Yes there are cases where both sides consent to this (and with sufficient anti-viral medication and condoms it is actually quite safe) and thus it is tolerated, but that is mainly because of the legal principal of "where there is no accuser, there is no case". But it still remains quite reckless behavior that willingly endangers the life of another person, and thus is justified for legal persecution just as other such reckless behavior such as drunk driving etc.

As for private discrimination versus unjust public policy... yes in every day speech both is commonly called discriminatory, but I think it is work making a distinction, because motivations and effect differ greatly between the two. And yes, a government that allows discrimination is complicit in it, where did I ever claim it wasn't? It might however be the result of a trade-off trying to balance a complicated situation that doesn't really have a clear immediate solution.

And it might not be immediately apparent but I think the recent relative successes of the LGBT movement were (among other supplementing factors) the result of a multi-decade carefully balanced public policy of reducing discrimination (but not outlawing, or at least not much enforcing such laws) against these lifestyle choices. At some point of course things got then their own dynamic and changes appeared to happened quickly, but this is how significant social changes in society always happen.

Something a bit like that might also happen with discrimination against mentally ill persons, but right now society isn't anywhere near that point where it could get it's own dynamic (feel free to call me part of the problem). I also believe that some other factors such as improved therapy of these illnesses (likely chemical or via improved neuro-prosthesises) has to happen first before significant progress in a rights-based approach can be achieved. No such therapy will likely ever completely cure these illnesses, but they will hopefully at some point be efficient enough that society is willing to embrace a more rights based policy concerning these individuals.

Last but not least, you might not like the use of certain words ("measures" against "problems"), because yes other people with worse intentions then me might try to hide their intentions behind similar wordings, but I honestly don't know how to formulate it much different and if there was a way, it would be also quickly adopted by those trying to hide their real intentions. This is a curse of moderate policy making, as people will always try to hide behind a similar front if they want to secretly push through something much less acceptable to the general public. But it is strategically not advisable to yield to this and employ more extremist formulations in the opposite direction, because then these people can fully take over the now vacant spot and claim they were the moderates all along (and thus shifting public policy debate significantly in their favor). And no, it is not true that moderate policy makers are apologists enabling bad things to happen by looking the other way or something like that, that is just a rhetoric extremists to both sides of a policy debate like to employ to try and shame moderates into shifting their position. And it is exactly the failure of the moderates in the US to stand their ground that has led to the current completely messed up partisan political situation there.

Edit: it is easy to point out the historical failures of moderate policy making and the successes are nearly always re-appropriated quickly by the groups benefiting the most from them (as was the case with racial discrimination an LGBT in many parts of the world, which mainly had success because moderate policy making enabled it), thus it is a pretty thankless job to do the progressive grunt work. And then often being accused of having bad intentions and being compared to people enabling historical atrocities is really the icing on the cake so to say.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 11 Oct 2020, 01:59

onpon4 {l Wrote}:I strongly disagree unless you can provide some very clear evidence that a person having ASPD will regularly lead to death or other severe harm for other people (after controlling for other factors).


Sorry, I missed that part. Behavior of people with ASPD regularly leads to death and severe harm of other people, which is why they end up in prison (or why investment banks cause so much harm). "Controlling for other factors" is simply impossible in this case and a totally irrelevant theoretical argument. Yes of course theoretically I acknowledge that there are probably other interrelated factors that might or might not be more decisive in the resulting harmful behavior. But that can only be judged on an individual case by case basis (which ideally has been done by the court before sending that person to prison, but sadly often it isn't sufficiently) and doesn't change the fact that ASPD and harmful behavior are correlated (as opposed to a causal relation, which might or might not be the case). And it is this correlation that good moderate public policy uses to try and prevent *future* harm, because ultimately that is all that really matters, everything else is water down the river.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 11 Oct 2020, 07:41

Behavior of people with ASPD regularly leads to death and severe harm of other people, which is why they end up in prison

That doesn't follow. They could have also been sent to prison for things that did nothing wrong. Currently we haven't clearly established why they've gone to prison.

"Controlling for other factors" is simply impossible in this case

Why? Scientists control for such factors all the time. Things like poverty, how harshly they are sentenced relative to others, and membership or belief in extremist groups can and should be controlled for to actually understand how much of the difference actually seems to be influenced by ASPD.

doesn't change the fact that ASPD and harmful behavior are correlated

This isn't a fact, it's an assumption based on a vague statistic which we haven't been able to check, but seems to indicate that about half of the U.K. prison population consists of people with ASPD, or something to that effect. As mentioned, things that lead to jail time may or may not be harmful (depending on how you judge values), and we can't deduce whether or not we consider behavior harmful without knowing what it actually is.

If ASPD does lend itself to harm, then I seriously doubt it's any worse than the harm that pedophilia can lend itself to, and note that I argued against discriminating against pedophiles, too. So unless you can prove very strongly that ASPD leads to harm at least as bad as pedophilia which cannot be solved without violating the human rights of people with ASPD, the rights of people with ASPD (including the right to bodily autonomy and not being imprisoned or enslaved) cannot be justifiably infringed.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 11 Oct 2020, 08:37

Ok, fine. You are right that the evidence for this correlation is weak and there are many other cofounding factors. I also think scientist have not extensively looked for this correlation as it is hard to do.

So ok, lets say your suggestions would be put into policy and also enforced. Quite evidently this would not change anything about the prison population, because "having ASPD" isn't the stated reason of their prison sentence (but rather having committed fraud etc.) and it also features very rarely as an insanity defense.

But now someone like me who actually wants to get people out of prison and into therapy and prevent others ending up in prison in the first place, can't even look into the possibility that ASPD might be a contributing factor as doing so would be against the law and also discriminatory.

Is that really what you are suggesting?
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 11 Oct 2020, 16:28

Getting people out of prison and into other kinds of confinement isn't a solution to anything. Prison is a legalized form of slavery and should be abolished entirely (just like cops). But that's a bit off-topic.

Regarding not getting people out of prison specifically for the reason that they have ASPD, yes, that would be entirely consistent with what I'm saying, and I don't see any problem with that. The fact that people with ASPD seem to be over-represented in prisons has causes (which we haven't clearly identified), and we can address those causes with interventions that don't rely on taking away the human rights of people (e.g. by expanding access to healthcare to anyone, and not stigmatizing those who seek mental health care, and importantly, not making it possible for those who seek mental health care to lose their human rights). It might also involve decriminalizing things like drug use, or welfare programs, or any number of other things. With some more data, those problems that exist can be addressed.

The key point I'm focusing on, because it's the most fundamental, is sanism itself, which I'd be willing to bet is one of the factors that leads to people with ASPD landing in prison. Even if it isn't, the problems that mentally ill people face will never be addressed as long as society views us as inhuman monsters or wild animals or otherwise sub-human.

So for example, when people call the current U.S. White House resident a "narcissist", or "mentally ill", or "crazy", or say that he "needs help", these words don't affect him in the slightest, but they are causing real harm to actual mentally ill people by perpetuating the idea that one can only be a horrible person if they're mentally ill, or that evil is the domain of mental illness. (It was this frustration with the "left" in the U.S., which is actually center-right, that led us to write this article.)
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Lyberta » 16 Oct 2020, 19:42

Julius {l Wrote}:I am basically wondering aloud what to do with people that have ASPD, who do have severe mental health issues and very often end up doing harm to society. In a sense this is similar to pedophiles, but I so far didn't bring this up as it is a similarly emotionally loaded topic as Nazi genocide.


Wow, I didn't think Julius is a Neo-Nazi. Turns out he is.

Now I know why you don't want to talk about Nazism in other threads also. Because you fetishize them so much and don't want your gods criticized. You have shown your true face. Don't think I will forget it.

Julius {l Wrote}:As for scientific evidence, it is rather you that is challenging well established scientific consensus. You basically say ASPD as an illnes doesn't exist (or at the very least doesn't correlate with certain behavior all that much) and people that say that it does are doing so out of some bigoted belief to continue discriminating what is just another random character trait.


No, with the first article and throughout entire thread onpon has said that neurodivergent people should be treated with dignity and respect. Which is, surprise-surprise, how all people should be treated. That's the whole point.

onpon4 {l Wrote}:You mentioned pedophilia "or worse". Honestly, I can't think of a single thing directly influenced by mental illness that's worse than child sex abuse, and even that isn't exclusively perpetrated by mentally ill people (pedophiles, in this case).


Wait, did you just call pedophiles mentally ill?

onpon4 {l Wrote}:There's a massive difference between banning things like child pornography and lolicon, which is a societal good


Don't put drawn child pornography and child pornography whose creation involved real children in the same bucket. Nobody is getting harmed during creation of drawn child pornograghy. Therefore, drawn child pornography (lolicon, shotacon, etc.) must be legal. Sex toys in the shape of human children must also be legal. And they are actually sold in Japan.

onpon4 {l Wrote}:There is also a huge difference between ostracizing pedophiles who try to redefine pedophilia as "just an orientation" rather than a mental illness, because that is an action that causes societal harm (and, importantly, which non-pedophiles in theory could participate in, as unlikely as it is)


Here's practice. I'm not a pedophile. I love to imagine myself being an underage girl having consensual sex with an adult man. And I use drawn child pornography to get my "underage sex" fix.

And I don't think pedophilia is a mental illness.

onpon4 {l Wrote}:Mental illness is not temporary. It's usually impossible to "cure" a mental illness, and it's usually inhumane to try to do that against the person's will because the respective mental illnesses are a part of who we are. Attempting to "cure" them when we don't want that, therefore, is effectively a form of mind control. This is just one reason why most autistic self-advocates consider Autism Speaks to be a hate group.


Wait, what? I was born perfectly mentally healthly, it was rape and abuse by parents that gave me CPTSD. Now that my parents are dead, I don't see how I can't recover and not have CPTSD. Yes, some residual effects will stay but major recovery is totally reasonable. In fact, over the last months I already recovered extreme amounts of mental health already. I just need more.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 16 Oct 2020, 21:33

Wow, I didn't think Lyberta is a troll. Turns out she is.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby onpon4 » 16 Oct 2020, 22:06

Wait, did you just call pedophiles mentally ill?

Yes, pedophilia is a mental illness. Please note that I don't consider this to be something that makes anyone lesser. It means that a variation in neurology has the potential to cause an increased risk of harm (usually to one's self, but occasionally, as in the case of pedophilia, to others).

Nobody is getting harmed during creation of drawn child pornograghy. Therefore, drawn child pornography (lolicon, shotacon, etc.) must be legal. Sex toys in the shape of human children must also be legal. And they are actually sold in Japan.

I agree with the base premise on a low level, but I don't agree with the conclusion because even though lolicon doesn't directly cause harm, it encourages and reinforces behavior that is categorically harmful. I understand that these things exist in Japan (and it's where they originate), but I believe allowing that is a mistake.

Wait, what? I was born perfectly mentally healthly, it was rape and abuse by parents that gave me CPTSD. Now that my parents are dead, I don't see how I can't recover and not have CPTSD. Yes, some residual effects will stay but major recovery is totally reasonable. In fact, over the last months I already recovered extreme amounts of mental health already. I just need more.

If curing your mental illness is possible and is right for you, then I wish you the best of luck with that. The key is that it's what you want for yourself, and not something that someone who has power over you wants for their own benefit. The same goes for, say, medications that don't cure a mental illness but change brain activity to get rid of symptoms (like antidepressants). There's nothing wrong with the action, but it shouldn't be imposed on someone against their will. EDIT: It also shouldn't be a societal expectation, since it's not possible for everyone (many mental illnesses cannot be cured, only managed).
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Lyberta » 17 Oct 2020, 23:52

onpon4 {l Wrote}:Yes, pedophilia is a mental illness. Please note that I don't consider this to be something that makes anyone lesser. It means that a variation in neurology has the potential to cause an increased risk of harm (usually to one's self, but occasionally, as in the case of pedophilia, to others).


Bullshit, quoting Wikipedia:

A mental disorder, also called a mental illness or psychiatric disorder, is a behavioral or mental pattern that causes significant distress or impairment of personal functioning.


I have no idea how being a pedophile "causes significant distress or impairment of personal functioning". If society is afraid of pedophiles, that's "pedophilephobia" (the fear of pedophiles). That's society problem. Not pedophiles' problem. Now, as I said earlier, I am not a pedophile but I would to totally go on a pedophile pride march (basically the same as LGBT pride march) to support right of pedophiles to exist, be proud of who they are and live good lives.

Psychiatry called homosexuality and "transsexualism" a mental illness. Now you are doing the same calling pedophilia a mental illness. You, onpon, are a bigot and pedophilephobe. The same way as Julius who has phobia of people with ASPD.

onpon4 {l Wrote}:I agree with the base premise on a low level, but I don't agree with the conclusion because even though lolicon doesn't directly cause harm, it encourages and reinforces behavior that is categorically harmful. I understand that these things exist in Japan (and it's where they originate), but I believe allowing that is a mistake.


Bullshit again, this time I'm just gonna give link to Wikipedia's alcohol ban article. TL;DR: They don't work. They just drive the market underground and people continue to drink.

In case of pedophiles if there is no drawn child porn and children-shaped sex toys, pedophiles will simply opt for the next best option: sex with real children. See now? By banning drawn CP you increase child sexual abuse. It is that simple.

Now, I'm a zoophile. I have real urges to have real sex with real animals. And my needs are satisfied by furry porn and companies like Bad Dragon (western companies, not Japanese!) that make sex toys in the shape of animal genitalia. And you know what? I don't feel any "significant distress or impairment of personal functioning". Are you gonna be even bigger bigot and zoophilephobe and call zoophilia a mental illness?

As I said earlier, I have plans of becoming a furry porn artist so I can turn my passion (yes, even sexual passion) into a business that helps me survive. So I get to earn money and my clients (by the way, only a minority of furries are zoophiles) get their sexual needs fulfilled, everyone is happy and no real animals get hurt. Now, if suddenly furry porn and Bad Dragon sex toys become illegal, hell yeah I would have way more reasons to go outside and have sex with real animals. Something I don't even consider now given all legal and non-animal-harming ways to fulfill my needs. Do you see now?

And while we are on topic of prohibition, I also have plans to become a part-time sex worker and I find the fact that most of sex work is illegal completely bonkers. Sex work is a work like any other. We need zoophile pride marches and sex worker pride marches too.
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Re: Sanism in Media and Discourse

Postby Julius » 18 Oct 2020, 12:00

Lyberta {l Wrote}:
A mental disorder, also called a mental illness or psychiatric disorder, is a behavioral or mental pattern that causes significant distress or impairment of personal functioning.


I have no idea how being a pedophile "causes significant distress or impairment of personal functioning".


Both persons with ASPD and pedophiles suffer from a significant impairment of social personal functioning, and many pedophiles are probably even feeling significant distress at the thought of what their sexual desires might do to children if put into action.

As for the rest, well I think all people participating in this thread are aware of the pro and con arguments and are still unlikely to agree, so I call this discussion closed.

Oh and no more name calling please, consider that an official warning from the moderators.
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