By James Breckenridge.
“…back in the day we used to do things like it was a never ending prison sentence. We got to use shock therapy, sterilization, frontal lobotomies. We behaved badly…” – Bruce Banman, 2014
People had their brains fried with electricity; people had holes cut into their brains; people were turned into drooling zombies by drugs; people were turned into vegetables, their personalities and minds destroyed; people were used as experimental animals by their government; and the victims of this abuse could do nothing but suffer the torture inflicted on them because they were locked up and the key thrown away.
For the ‘crime’ of having a chemical imbalance in their brain chemistry people were condemned to a HELL created, maintain and run by other Canadians.
This is not “behaving badly’. This is depraved behaviour; it is behaviour that damns those whose actions – or silence – destroyed people’s minds and lives.
And Bruce Banman pines for those good old days?
In putting an end to this depraved behaviour the Supreme Court asserted the right of those victimized NOT to be tortured; asserted the right to recovery, mental wellness, love, joy; the right to a life – NOT a tormented existence locked away for the convenience of government and society.
Once again we hear the cry “they need to be locked up for their own good”, raised across the Lower Mainland.
Mayors, politicians, citizens, society can delude themselves all they want, but this is not about the mental health, wellbeing and wellness of those they seek to lock away – as once they did when “… back in the day we used to do things like it was a never ending prison sentence. We got to use shock therapy, sterilization, frontal lobotomies,” but the truth is that it is about the convenience of politicians and society.
Spare me your feigned concern for anything but your own convenience.
After more than a decade of ignoring calls to put in place the community based services, supports and housing needed to permit those living with mental illness and from other mental health issues to find wellness …
… suddenly mayors and citizens are concerned about those they seek to lock away, ‘for their own good’ – after they have become an issue, a problem, on city streets.
A faithless, counterfeit concern fabricated for the convenience of politicians and others.
A concern whose hypocrisy is clear in the call to warehouse, to lock them up for their ‘own good’ when knowledge and understanding make it clear that a large institution warehousing people is more harmful to mental health and wellness than helpful.
If politicians and others now calling for people to be locked up for their ‘own good’ were not simply concerned about their convenience and had any true concern for the people they seek to ‘disappear’ off their streets, they would join the call to put in place the community based services, supports and housing needed to permit those suffering mental illness and from other mental health issues to find wellness.
We would not be subjected to Abbotsford’s Bruce Banman, beating his chest piously, expressing the need to ‘lock them up for their own good’ mere days after he voted down a funded proposal for first stage housing that would have helped those he, obviously, so falsely expresses concern about find mental health and wellness.
And please, spare me any those lame ‘I got to find an excuse – no matter how ridiculous’ excuses.
We are talking about providing the means for people to find wellness; a course of action and behaviour far more important than catering to baseless fears and fear mongering of merchants, even if those merchants do contribute to the election campaigns.
I am one of those fortunate enough who, finding themselves homeless on the streets of Abbotsford, were/are able to find and access the limited resources, services and support, resources, services and support that have become more limited and unavailable over time, and struggle off the streets and into housing.
I am blessed in that as the resources, services and support decreased – I had and found friends who stepped up to help me stay off the street.
It would be kinder, far kinder and more humane, to be taken out and shot – than it would be to fall into the clutches of Bruce Banman et al and locked away in a Hell of their creation – ‘for my own good.’
And their convenience.