Study says millions have 'rage' disorderI have arrived. I too can claim victimhood. I'm thinking of applying for long-term disability.
By Lindsey Tanner, AP Medical Writer
By definition, intermittent explosive disorder involves multiple outbursts that are way out of proportion to the situation. These angry outbursts often include threats or aggressive actions and property damage. The disorder typically first appears in adolescence; in the study, the average age of onset was 14.
"People think it's bad behavior and that you just need an attitude adjustment, but what they don't know ... is that there's a biology and cognitive science to this," said Dr. Emil Coccaro, chairman of psychiatry at the University of Chicago's medical school.
Road rage, temper outbursts that involve throwing or breaking objects and even spousal abuse can sometimes be attributed to the disorder, though not everyone who does those things is afflicted. (link)
More importantly, if the Roanoke Times has its way, I am exempt from capital punishment no matter how heinous the crime is that I commit - forever:
I make light of my disorder in this case to make a point. Some people - bad people - kill and are mentally deranged. Some rape and murder because they are mentally deranged. For this they should receive maximum punishment - whatever society deems that to be.
A life-and-death test of competence
Executing mentally incompetent prisoners is forbidden. A competent state upholds the law.
At the age of 18, Percy Levar Walton savagely murdered three people -- an elderly couple, Jessie and Elizabeth Kendrick, and a Danville neighbor, Archie Moore -- during Thanksgiving week of 1996. Of that there is no doubt.
Whether Walton is smart enough or sane enough to understand that Virginia last week was hours away from killing him for those crimes is very much in doubt. Gov. Tim Kaine made the right call when he stayed Walton's execution for six months, time enough to determine the degree of his mental retardation and mental illness.
Before Virginia pumps lethal chemicals into this killer's veins, the state should be sure Walton understands exactly what will happen to him and why the commonwealth exacts the ultimate retribution. The U.S. Supreme Court requires -- and a just society demands -- this level of mental competency. (link)
When we start exempting those individuals who commit crimes and are found to have a mental disorder - any mental disorder, I and millions of others nationwide will be arguing in a court of law that our intermittent explosive disorder - or our breakfast - or our political affiliation - or our choice of dress caused us to be mentally incompetent and to commit horrible crimes.
Punishment should fit the crime; it shouldn't be tailored to the whims of the growingly deranged psychiatric community.
"Justice is itself the great standing policy of civil society; and any eminent departure from it, under any circumstances, lies under the suspicion of being no policy at all." Edmund Burke