I just read Sending mentally ill people to Siberia — Feministe. and the article from thinkprogress… i feel ill. I realize i say that a lot and it’s true: i feel somatic responses to overwhelming stimuli. I think about what it must take to say things like
“I wish we had a Siberia so we could ship them all off to freeze to death and die and clean up the population.”
and mean it. To honestly feel the kind of contempt for fellow human beings that you wish they would die. It’s scary and sad. I feel bad for people who feel so disconnected from humanity that they could feel this way about anyone. Paulo Freire says in Pedagogy of the Oppressed that not only are those who are oppressed lacking a piece of their humanity (which has been withheld from them) but that people who oppress others have lost part of their humanity as well. I also wonder what kind of mentally ill this POLITICAL LEADER is referring to… people with major depression? Schizophrenia? Forms of mental retardation? I’m really upset about this. And the fact that his remarks are excused because he’s old and “earned his right” to say what he thinks. It brings me back to the question my colleague and I were mulling over: should speech that incites hatred or/and violence bee free? I still think so, I think we need to have a culture that absolutely rejects bullshit like this. I also think that people who hold views like this should not be elected to office.. obviously you cannot always know how people truly feel (people – especially those who want to be in power – are manipulative and put forth whatever they want people to see… don’t we all) but as soon as shit like this comes out they should be removed from positions of power. Someone with such destitute views of citizens THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO REPRESENT should not have the power to allocate resources or influence the political sphere at all.