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Verdandi
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Terrifying" refers to the emotion called "terror." And it does not necessarily carry more impact from someone deemed "rational" as no one is rational all the time. Much of the rhetoric surrounding autism (including Diane Sawyer's reference to the 1 in 88 number as "terrifying") is anything but rational. I would call it hysterical.

Which is more disturbing:

* Allowing a large number of people who need assistance and services go undiagnosed and unrecorded?

* Diagnosing everyone who needs assistance and services, even if the number is larger than anyone suspected?

Speaking rationally, the increase in diagnoses is a positive thing, as it means fewer people are slipping through the cracks. Diane Sawyer and Autism Speaks are just fearmongering.

I suggest actually looking up those articles about veterans murdering their families. I didn't find much sympathy in the comments I read. I did see the phrase "walking time bomb" come up repeatedly.

As far as mental illness, the vast majority of mental illnesses do not render one incapable of personal responsibility for their actions. Using mental illness to explain away murder is simply making excuses for the murder in the first place. And, seriously, this kind of hand-wringing over whether or not you can possibly know someone's state of mind when they killed someone only seems to happen relative to murdered disabled children. People don't seem to care nearly as much in other situations - people seem less motivated to make excuses for murderers in most other situations.

I linked multiple examples of what I am talking about in the previous thread in which I discussed this. If you (aghogday) have never seen evidence that disabled children's lives are undervalued compared to abled children's lives, then I'd suggest going back and looking those up.

Also, the continuous evocation of mental illness as an excuse for murder is ridiculous and not supported by facts: Mentally ill people are significantly more likely to be targets of violence than instigators. When you read about someone who is schizophrenic killing someone, that is the exception, not the rule. Depressed people tend to kill themselves, not others.

I would also say that culturally speaking, sympathy for mentally ill people is virtually non-existent. The idea of sympathy for parents who murder their children because they might be mentally ill rings false to me because it is simply inconsistent with the way people in general approach mental illness in other contexts.
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PaulaDurbin-Westby
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/apr/04/mother-pleads-not-guilty-killing-son/

In an interview that day, she told police that the boy was autistic and that she didnít believe he would have a life or a future without her, so she decided to kill him, the prosecutor said.
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aghogday
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verdandi wrote:
"Terrifying" refers to the emotion called "terror." And it does not necessarily carry more impact from someone deemed "rational" as no one is rational all the time. Much of the rhetoric surrounding autism (including Diane Sawyer's reference to the 1 in 88 number as "terrifying") is anything but rational. I would call it hysterical.

Which is more disturbing:

* Allowing a large number of people who need assistance and services go undiagnosed and unrecorded?

* Diagnosing everyone who needs assistance and services, even if the number is larger than anyone suspected?

Speaking rationally, the increase in diagnoses is a positive thing, as it means fewer people are slipping through the cracks. Diane Sawyer and Autism Speaks are just fearmongering.

I suggest actually looking up those articles about veterans murdering their families. I didn't find much sympathy in the comments I read. I did see the phrase "walking time bomb" come up repeatedly.

As far as mental illness, the vast majority of mental illnesses do not render one incapable of personal responsibility for their actions. Using mental illness to explain away murder is simply making excuses for the murder in the first place. And, seriously, this kind of hand-wringing over whether or not you can possibly know someone's state of mind when they killed someone only seems to happen relative to murdered disabled children. People don't seem to care nearly as much in other situations - people seem less motivated to make excuses for murderers in most other situations.

I linked multiple examples of what I am talking about in the previous thread in which I discussed this. If you (aghogday) have never seen evidence that disabled children's lives are undervalued compared to abled children's lives, then I'd suggest going back and looking those up.

Also, the continuous evocation of mental illness as an excuse for murder is ridiculous and not supported by facts: Mentally ill people are significantly more likely to be targets of violence than instigators. When you read about someone who is schizophrenic killing someone, that is the exception, not the rule. Depressed people tend to kill themselves, not others.

I would also say that culturally speaking, sympathy for mentally ill people is virtually non-existent. The idea of sympathy for parents who murder their children because they might be mentally ill rings false to me because it is simply inconsistent with the way people in general approach mental illness in other contexts.


As I stated earlier, I've done the research and don't mind sharing it to back up the points I have made.

Diane Sawyer rates #1 as the favorite current affairs personality among all news casters..

http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/diane-sawyer-tops-list-of-favorite-current-affairs-personality_b113775

She has a great deal more influence over the American Public than Autism Speaks, with how she and ABC describes the increase in the prevalence. Over a million people view every show. Week ending March 26th, her show received over 7 million views in one week. Autism Speaks is only reporting the epidemic language on their website that will not likely get 100,000 views in a span of one week.

http://www.mediabistro.com/tvnewser/category/evening-news-ratings

It is unfortunate that neither she or ABC provided the disclaimer that the increase was likely due to greater detection.

While autism speaks provided the public health crisis language of epidemic, they qualified that statement with the disclaimer that it is suspected that the increase may be due to greater detection.

The increase of individuals receiving support by governmental sources, identified in the school system in programs for the developmentally disabled as having ASD's is a difficulty and public health crisis for the government in funding those programs, regardless of the reason why the numbers are increasing.

It's a good thing that detection is increasing for the individuals receiving the support, but it doesn't reduce the actual problems in providing the services and support to the increasing numbers of individuals detected as such.



The most recent incident regarding sympathy and war veterans is Robert Bales who killed 16 people many of which were women and children.

He is being offered sympathy because some believe that PTSD from combat stress and "snapping" from that mental stress were at the heart of his actions.

http://www.adn.com/2012/03/18/v-printer/2378228/condemnation-sympathy-for-rampage.html

Quote:
He is accused of the kind of crime that makes people shiver, the killing of families in their own homes under cover of night, the butchery of defenseless children. Under normal circumstances, Americans would dismiss such an act as worthy of only one response: swift and merciless punishment.

Not so in the case of Robert Bales -- at least, not for some Americans.

So far, many seem willing to believe that a 10-year U.S. military veteran, worn down by four tours of combat and perhaps suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, simply snapped. That somehow there must be, if not an excuse, at least an explanation.


It's different circumstances but it is the same controversy over whether or not someone who has endured a great deal of stress resulting in mental problems deserves sympathy when participating in a horrific action.


90% of individuals that commit suicide including murder/suicide are determined to have a mental illness or substance abuse problem, as reported by the National Alliance on Mental Illness through reasearch.

http://www.nami.org/Content/ContentGroups/E-News/20023/March_20022/Suicide_in_the_United____States.htm


Quote:
Mental Disorders and Suicide

Findings from psychological autopsy (PA) studies, where the individualís state of mind prior to the suicide is determined through extensive interviews and review of medical history, indicate that about 90 percent of persons who completed suicides in all age groups had a diagnosable mental or substance abuse disorder. In other words, having a mental or substance abuse disorder is nearly a necessary condition for suicide to occur.


http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/essays/article994806.ece

Quote:
Second, the vast majority of suicidal people, including those who commit murder-suicide, have serious, untreated psychiatric illnesses, and these are conditions that can be detected, diagnosed and successfully treated in most cases. The National Institute of Mental Health has estimated that more than 90 percent of those who die by suicide (homicidal or not) have disabling and untreated psychiatric disorders. If our country had an effective system of mental health care, it is estimated that at least 16,000 lives could be saved each year. Perhaps a significant number of homicide victims could be saved as well.

Third, media stories about murder-suicides are often not helpful and enlightening. Story details can be hurtful to families of the perpetrator and victims who are co-victims struggling to make sense of the sudden violence. Colorful language such as a "crazed gunman," "monster," "madman," or "disgruntled employee who goes postal," do not contribute to the public's understanding of the underlying psychiatric illnesses. Making assertions that somebody should have seen the mental illness and sought help can have a double edge and be hurtfully judgmental.

Fourth, the decision to die by suicide after homicide is made long before the killing occurs. In most cases, there are many observable warning signs of mental illness in the behaviors of potential murder-suicide perpetrators. The Violence and Injury Prevention Program has been monitoring the frequency and clinical patterns of murder-suicides, identifying risk factors, training professionals, and providing educational materials for the general public, including traumatic grief resources for survivors.

Perpetrators of murder-suicide have four core characteristics: psychiatric illnesses or disturbed thinking, an intense attachment to the victim or victims (which may include pets), a need to control or exert responsibility to maintain control over a situation(s), and a belief that something is threatening the integrity of their attachment to the victim(s).

Can murder-suicides be prevented? The answer is yes, many of them can be prevented, but only if suicidal people and those thinking of harming others and then themselves can be identified before they act, and if they get appropriate mental health care to ease their psychological pain and suffering. In addition to the training programs at USF, the QPR Institute offers a broad range of training programs to educate professionals and teach people in all walks of life how to "Question, Persuade, and Refer" a suicidal or homicidal-suicidal person for further evaluation and care. We are dedicated to developing a country of caring citizens and developing resources in the community. Many lives depend on it


There is no doubt that the disabled of every age are valued less in society, I don't disagree with that point at all, and have made it here many times in many different topics, when there is a suggestion that people are going to significantly change this reality, without a legal requirement to do so.

Civilization and laws are the only thing standing between the practice of infanticide of disabled infants evidenced well into the prehistory of human beings, and most other animals.

The harsh reality is that if it were not for modern society and the technology and laws that provide disabled individuals accommodations in life, many disabled individuals would not likely survive.

And it also appears to be a harsh reality that some modern societies have passed their apex in providing assistance for the disadvantaged; a key measure of the health of societies.

I personally have no idea if there is love or hate in the mentally disturbed minds of parents that come to the decision for a murder suicide and it is possible as well that there is only the last remaining energy of cold resolve of an extremely depressed person.

Publically suggesting they are monsters, by some of the autistic individuals in support of the victims, which is an understandable reaction of anger for the victim, is shown not to be of benefit in providing information to the general public of the actual mental health problems that are suggested by scientific research to underly the majority of these cases of suspected murder/suicides.

The Parents that are trying to understand the circumstances that lead to a potential murder/homicide and taking measures to provide psychological support for others in potential similiar circumstances, is a step in that direction, per that research, to actually decrease further incidences of murder/suicides.

Support and respect for victims is always a good thing.
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aghogday
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

PaulaDurbin-Westby wrote:
http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/apr/04/mother-pleads-not-guilty-killing-son/

In an interview that day, she told police that the boy was autistic and that she didnít believe he would have a life or a future without her, so she decided to kill him, the prosecutor said.


The facts are not yet completely clear in this case, but if she is indeed suicidal the story as reported is in alignment with the characteristics of mentally ill individuals that commit murder suicides, per the article I provided.

The comments in the article pick up this point, and while they might not have been provided knowledge on the mental health facts on this type of horrific situation, most have responded in a respectful manner.

Sympathy for the potential mental health problems of the suspect, is evidenced repeatedly in the comments. Per, evidence as provided by the National Alliance of Mental Illness and the National Institute of Mental Health there is a 9 out of 10 chance that they are correct in their assessment of the situation.

The comments on autism awareness as a root of the issue, that were suggested by a few individuals, may be well intentioned, but not reflective of the actual research on this type of incident.

Awareness of the potential of this type of problem, detection of it, and psychological help is the proven method to prevent this type of incident, but it is possible that this individual did not even have access to health care. Another extremely important factor, in prevention of this type of incident that hopefully is going to be resolved for some, depending on the supreme court decision. Smile
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Verdandi
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diane Sawyer's popularity is completely irrelevant to my point. That she is popular and influential does not change the fact that her "terrifying" statement is indicative of hysteria, not rationality. And my point was her so-called rationality (absent in her "terrifying" comment) does not drive her popularity.

aghogday wrote:

Publically suggesting they are monsters, by some of the autistic individuals in support of the victims, which is an understandable reaction of anger for the victim, is shown not to be of benefit in providing information to the general public of the actual mental health problems that are suggested by scientific research to underly the majority of these cases of suspected murder/suicides.


I am never going to agree with you on this. A large number of these murders are not also murder suicides, and my understanding is that mental illness does not in the vast majority of cases make one not responsible for their actions. You're not pushing for anything that doesn't already happen: Parents who kill their own disabled children already receive a significant amount of sympathy, people are willing to construct entire narratives to change them from murderer to martyr. What is generally lacking is sympathy for the children who are murdered. Often, people treat murders of disabled children as if they're a form of mercy killing.

Quote:
The Parents that are trying to understand the circumstances that lead to a potential murder/homicide and taking measures to provide psychological support for others in potential similiar circumstances, is a step in that direction, per that research, to actually decrease further incidences of murder/suicides.


Yes, although people manufacture entire stories about why the parents must have been driven to murder in order to drive sympathy for them - in many cases, claims such as "they didn't have enough support" are simply not true. While this may be true in some cases, it doesn't seem to be a primary cause.

I'm never going to have sympathy for murderers, whether they kill themselves afterward or not. I find such calls for sympathy to be abhorrent. I find it disturbing that it is considered so important to sympathize with killers, often at the expense of the children they killed. Suicide or not.

Quote:
Support and respect for victims is always a good thing.


And yet you're pushing to sympathize with those who victimized them.

I don't agree with that and I can't respect it.

Oh, here is a parent's response that actually makes sense to me:

http://community.advanceweb.com/blogs/ot_9/archive/2012/04/05/on-being-reactionary.aspx

She's not making excuses, not trying to make "mentally ill" into "potential murderer." She talks about her daughter's reaction, and she clarifies a lot of points that are glossed over here.

My favorite paragraphs:

Quote:
But, see, that's the thing. Everyone is fighting a hard battle, and very, very few of those people become so overwhelmed by that battle that they resort to murder. Even fewer of those people resort to killing their own children. It's like what Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg says in her blog entry This is What You Get: "In having a child, you make a commitment that, even if you end up in the worst extremity, youíll protect the childís life. Thatís a basic, sacred trust." I can't help but feel angry at parents who break that trust, and I can't help but be reactionary against media coverage that seems to try and justify the breaking of that trust. Brenda Rothman has done a great job of outlining this sort of media coverage in her blog entry Perpetuating the Stereotype: Autism, Parenting, & Murder, as well as explaining exactly why this sort of rhetoric is harmful to the autism community as a whole.

Mostly, however, I can't help but become reactionary when my 12-year-old autistic daughter asks me about these murders, and then says, in a quiet voice, "You would never do anything like that to me, would you?"

It breaks my heart that my amazing, awesome, beautiful daughter feels like anyone would *ever* want to hurt her just because she's autistic. It makes me sad that so many of my autistic Internet friends feel as if their very personhood is being devalued right now. I wish we did not live in a world where these things happen. I wish we lived in a world where we didn't have to struggle so much for simple autism awareness, not to mention real and complete autism acceptance.


And here's Brenda Rothman's post:

http://mamabegood.blogspot.com/2012/04/perpetuating-stereotype-autism.html

Quote:
Daniel Kahneman, in his book Thinking Fast and Slow, tells us that it takes as little as two occurrences of an event for our brain to form a pattern and conclude that the two events are normal. Two facts juxtaposed just two times and we believe that one fact causes another.

All we need are two news reports of "murder" coupled with "autistic child" and we believe it's normal that a parent would kill an autistic child. Two statements that an autistic child is a burden and all the lives of autistic children are devalued. Two opinions that autism parenting leads to mental breakdowns and people believe that it is true.

...

The Daily Mail quoted the executive director of the autism center that George attended as saying that "parents with autistic children are 'very close to that line of going over the edge.'"

And so the pattern is established. An autistic child is a burden on a parent. An autistic child imprisons the parent. An autism parent will suffer admirably, reach her limit, and, possibly, kill her child. And people will accept this as understandable.

If you are an autistic, you will be scared to death of autism parents. And for good reason - apparently, we could go off at any time. If you are a parent (or potential parent), you'll have a damaging perspective on what it's like to be an autism parent.

Reporters have already framed the issue with "disability," "burden," and "sympathetic killing." Those of us who have personal experience with autism need to take back the conversation. We need people to hear the other side of the story, those parents who do not believe that these events are normal. Those who don't see autistic children as burdensome and imprisoning. We need reporters to interview autistics about this story. We need to hear autistics' stories of being parented, well or poorly, and from those who believe that autistic lives have intrinsic value, hope, and joy.


Also:

Violence and Mental Illness: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1525086/

Do the severely mentally ill commit more violent crime than the rest of the population?

http://www.niaby.com/moreViolentCrime.cfm?ArticleID=24


Last edited by Verdandi on Sat Apr 07, 2012 10:01 am; edited 4 times in total
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Verdandi
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, you found one story about sympathy for a veteran. It's not hard to find stories of veterans who kill that lack that same sympathy. Like I said, "ticking time bomb" is a common phrase used.
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Verdandi
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, and when it comes to Robert Bales, you really should take imperialism and racism into account. White Americans are much more likely to forgive and accept someone murdering people of color on the other side of the world (many of them are cool with it happening in the US) than they are a soldier in the US killing his own family. This is actually mentioned in the article (absent the race aspect). Your example is deeply flawed.

Look up Abel Gutierrez for what is a more likely response in the US.
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aghogday
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verdandi wrote:
Diane Sawyer's popularity is completely irrelevant to my point. That she is popular and influential does not change the fact that her "terrifying" statement is indicative of hysteria, not rationality. And my point was her so-called rationality (absent in her "terrifying" comment) does not drive her popularity.

aghogday wrote:

Publically suggesting they are monsters, by some of the autistic individuals in support of the victims, which is an understandable reaction of anger for the victim, is shown not to be of benefit in providing information to the general public of the actual mental health problems that are suggested by scientific research to underly the majority of these cases of suspected murder/suicides.


I am never going to agree with you on this. A large number of these murders are not also murder suicides, and my understanding is that mental illness does not in the vast majority of cases make one not responsible for their actions. You're not pushing for anything that doesn't already happen: Parents who kill their own disabled children already receive a significant amount of sympathy, people are willing to construct entire narratives to change them from murderer to martyr. What is generally lacking is sympathy for the children who are murdered. Often, people treat murders of disabled children as if they're a form of mercy killing.

Quote:
The Parents that are trying to understand the circumstances that lead to a potential murder/homicide and taking measures to provide psychological support for others in potential similiar circumstances, is a step in that direction, per that research, to actually decrease further incidences of murder/suicides.


Yes, although people manufacture entire stories about why the parents must have been driven to murder in order to drive sympathy for them - in many cases, claims such as "they didn't have enough support" are simply not true. While this may be true in some cases, it doesn't seem to be a primary cause.

I'm never going to have sympathy for murderers, whether they kill themselves afterward or not. I find such calls for sympathy to be abhorrent. I find it disturbing that it is considered so important to sympathize with killers, often at the expense of the children they killed. Suicide or not.

Quote:
Support and respect for victims is always a good thing.


And yet you're pushing to sympathize with those who victimized them.

I don't agree with that and I can't respect it.

Oh, here is a parent's response that actually makes sense to me:

http://community.advanceweb.com/blogs/ot_9/archive/2012/04/05/on-being-reactionary.aspx

She's not making excuses, not trying to make "mentally ill" into "potential murderer." She talks about her daughter's reaction, and she clarifies a lot of points that are glossed over here.

My favorite paragraphs:

Quote:
But, see, that's the thing. Everyone is fighting a hard battle, and very, very few of those people become so overwhelmed by that battle that they resort to murder. Even fewer of those people resort to killing their own children. It's like what Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg says in her blog entry This is What You Get: "In having a child, you make a commitment that, even if you end up in the worst extremity, youíll protect the childís life. Thatís a basic, sacred trust." I can't help but feel angry at parents who break that trust, and I can't help but be reactionary against media coverage that seems to try and justify the breaking of that trust. Brenda Rothman has done a great job of outlining this sort of media coverage in her blog entry Perpetuating the Stereotype: Autism, Parenting, & Murder, as well as explaining exactly why this sort of rhetoric is harmful to the autism community as a whole.

Mostly, however, I can't help but become reactionary when my 12-year-old autistic daughter asks me about these murders, and then says, in a quiet voice, "You would never do anything like that to me, would you?"

It breaks my heart that my amazing, awesome, beautiful daughter feels like anyone would *ever* want to hurt her just because she's autistic. It makes me sad that so many of my autistic Internet friends feel as if their very personhood is being devalued right now. I wish we did not live in a world where these things happen. I wish we lived in a world where we didn't have to struggle so much for simple autism awareness, not to mention real and complete autism acceptance.


And here's Brenda Rothman's post:

http://mamabegood.blogspot.com/2012/04/perpetuating-stereotype-autism.html

Quote:
Daniel Kahneman, in his book Thinking Fast and Slow, tells us that it takes as little as two occurrences of an event for our brain to form a pattern and conclude that the two events are normal. Two facts juxtaposed just two times and we believe that one fact causes another.

All we need are two news reports of "murder" coupled with "autistic child" and we believe it's normal that a parent would kill an autistic child. Two statements that an autistic child is a burden and all the lives of autistic children are devalued. Two opinions that autism parenting leads to mental breakdowns and people believe that it is true.

...

The Daily Mail quoted the executive director of the autism center that George attended as saying that "parents with autistic children are 'very close to that line of going over the edge.'"

And so the pattern is established. An autistic child is a burden on a parent. An autistic child imprisons the parent. An autism parent will suffer admirably, reach her limit, and, possibly, kill her child. And people will accept this as understandable.

If you are an autistic, you will be scared to death of autism parents. And for good reason - apparently, we could go off at any time. If you are a parent (or potential parent), you'll have a damaging perspective on what it's like to be an autism parent.

Reporters have already framed the issue with "disability," "burden," and "sympathetic killing." Those of us who have personal experience with autism need to take back the conversation. We need people to hear the other side of the story, those parents who do not believe that these events are normal. Those who don't see autistic children as burdensome and imprisoning. We need reporters to interview autistics about this story. We need to hear autistics' stories of being parented, well or poorly, and from those who believe that autistic lives have intrinsic value, hope, and joy.


Also:

Violence and Mental Illness: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1525086/

Do the severely mentally ill commit more violent crime than the rest of the population?

http://www.niaby.com/moreViolentCrime.cfm?ArticleID=24


I am not personally suggesting that Diane Sawyer's "terrifying" comment was factual, however her reputation for rationality, trustworthyness, and likability all play a part on the impact of her news stories on the general public. I was responding to this statement: "Terrifying" refers to the emotion called "terror." And it does not necessarily carry more impact from someone deemed "rational" as no one is rational all the time."


She rates at the top of all newscasters on all these points. Her reputation objectively makes a difference in the impact of her statements on others regardless if the emotion expressed is not fully accurate to someone that is well versed in the facts associated with the topic.

The general population, not directly involved with autism details, is not paying anymore attention to the 1 in 88 statistic than what they hear on mainstream news sources. This gives Diane Sawyer an incredible amount of influence in how she frames the issue. Her reputation of rationality makes all the difference in the world to her target audience, as opposed to someone like Alex Jones or Glenn Beck making a statement like this to her target audience.

I understand you see this comment as hysterical but it is not the way the general population that trusts Diane Sawyer as a newscaster is going to see it.

The fact that 90% of murder/suicides are related to mental health/substance abuse issues, is not my opinion, it is evidenced by two highly respected mental health organizations.

There indeed may be cases where parents kill their autistic children when there is no murder/suicide or evidence of mental illness, it's not likely these individuals would garner the same sympathy, but do you have any examples of it to share. I can't remember coming across one, nor has one been presented here that I have seen.

People in the United States do not normally support the unwarranted killing of children overseas by service members. This was one of the most controversial issues in the Vietnam war, even when the children were participating in the war efforts.

This was clarified in the article I presented. The history of repeated combat tours and reports of PTSD, is the point of sympathy that has been expressed by the general public. The same sentiment has been expressed for Guiterrez in articles providing information on his act of violence.

http://www.mercurynews.com/bay-area-news/ci_20192122/weeks-before-gilroy-murder-suicide-marred-violence-pain

The fact that the article described Guiterrez as a ticking time bomb, did not prevent people from expressing sympathy for his plight as a war veteran with PTSD in the comments. People that attacked him were strongly rebuked in the comments section just as the people that called the parents involved in the murder/suicides monsters, were rebuked.

My point was this as evidenced by the sympathy shown war veterans with mental illness that commit act of violence, is evidence that this is not an autistic or disability specific issue, it is an issue of individuals under chronic stress that can result in mental illness and horrifying consequences if they do not receive help for their psychological problems. This is not reflective of violence in all cases of mental illness; as presented in the mental health article, there are specific factors studied that characterize these acts of violence.

The sentiment of the comments in the Guiterrez case are almost identical to the sentiments of the comments of the previous article provided on the killer that was suspected to have suicidal ideation.

I'm not pushing any ideology or suggesting anyone should sympathize with anyone on a personal level, I'm providing factual information from mental health professionals on how to respond to an issue like this, when prevention of future incidents is the goal.

The problem is that some people are suggesting that autism awareness, is at the root of these incidents, when awareness of the incidents and constructive preventative measures are the only proven method of preventing these type of incidents, per mental health experts. Those are evidenced facts, not my personal opinion. If you disagree with them your argument is not with me it is with the mental health professionals that have studied this type of incident for decades.

The first blog your presented is an example of an individual that is managing stress appropriately, and seeking help as needed. This is a good example for others to follow in similiar situations; not all have the health care resources or educational information to effect these positive changes.

These incidents are horrifying, and it's not surprising a child would ask a question like that if they are exposed to the media stories, however it is of little consequence to the prevention of the incidents in the future, if the effected parents do not receive the psychological support required to alter the outcomes.

In the second blog it is impossible to prevent the media from reporting or framing these incidents with highly emotional contexts. The daily mail is akin to the National Enquirer; unfortunately there are some target audiences that believe it as the gospel truth.

All autistic parents are obviously not on the edge of committed this rare atrocity or there would be a million reports instead of a few dozen over the span of years; but regardless of the factual reality, or even the reputation of the daily mail, there are people in their target audience that are going to believe whatever the daily mail says. This is one report that you will likely never hear from Diane Sawyer or ABC news.

One source of support for parents experiencing stress in the caretaking of severely disabled autistic children, is to gain support from others that have found constructive answers to solve their problems through proper counseling programs, or any other constructive answers that can be found through the support of others.

Fortunately there are sources that provide this type of avenue of support for parents. Autism Speaks is one source that has been providing this resource now for years through online support groups. It is possible that the support and answers gained there have prevented this type of tragic incident from occuring in some cases. The worst avenue of support is no support at all.

It is all part of awareness, that has the potential to lead people to answers that prevent these horrific incidents that are extremely rare among chronically stressed parents taking care of severely disabled autistic children; the overwhelming majority of which do not succumb to mental illness and these horrifying actions of violence.
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Verdandi
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jess-wilson/autism_b_1404565.html

Excerpt:

Quote:
On Saturday, March 31st, Patricia Corby flagged down a police officer to tell him that she'd just killed her autistic son, Danny. She drowned him in the bathtub, she said. He was four years old.

-
On Tuesday, March 6, 2012, Lester Hodgins came home to find his wife and son dead. According to police, Elizabeth Hodgins had shot their 22 year-old autistic son, then turned the gun on herself.

-
On May 31st of 2010, Stephanie Rochester -- according to her own report to police -- placed a plastic bag over her 6 month-old son, Rylan's head.

She told police that when the infant was still breathing some time later, she placed blankets over his face. The child was dead by morning.

According to the Colorado Daily, "During the initial investigation last summer, Rochester told detectives that she believed her baby, Rylan, was autistic, and that having an autistic child would emotionally and financially "ruin" her life."


And:

Quote:
In July of 2010, Saiqa Akhter called 911 to tell police that she had killed her two year-old daughter, Faryaal and her five year-old son, Zainmay. CNN described the recording of the 911 call. (Warning -- the story contains a video and recording of the 911 call. Please do NOT click on the link around children -- it may begin to play automatically.)

Quote:
On the tape, the woman tells the operator, "I killed them. I killed both of them. I killed my both kids... They are not doing anything. They are just blue. They are not taking any breaths. Their heart is not beating."
The operator asks her what happened.
"First, I tried to give them bathroom cleaner. I put in their mouth, but they don't drink it. I want them to drink it. They don't drink it... I grabbed their neck... and they are no more," she says on the tape.

The operator continues to talk to the woman to keep her on the phone until officers arrive. She asks why she killed her children, and the woman says she wanted normal children.

"They are autistic. I don't want my kids to be autistic," she is heard saying in an even tone.

The operator then asks her what she is feeling, and she says "nothing."


And another:

http://www.journeyswithautism.com/2012/04/07/can-we-use-the-word-evil-please/

Excerpt:

Quote:
Iíve been reading articles about the murders of disabled people, and Iím getting sick of the victims being defamed and written out of the stories of their own deaths. There was 22-year-old George Hodgins, an autistic man who is painted almost entirely as a source of endless stress. There was Daniel Corby, a four-year-old autistic boy who is painted almost entirely as a difficult child. There was Julie Cirella, an eight-year-old girl with cerebral palsy, who is painted almost entirely as a child in an agony of suffering that needed to end.

The comments to these stories feel like a punch in the gut every, single time. The mother must have been stressed. The mother must have been mentally ill. The mother must have been isolated and exhausted.

And? And? And??? How does that explain murder exactly? People are stressed, and mentally ill, and isolated, and exhausted, everywhere, every single day of the week, and most of them donít kill their children. And what about the person with the disability, who was hugely stressed, hugely isolated, and hugely exhausted by virtue of living with, you know, THE DISABILITY ITSELF, and who somehow managed, despite the stress, and the isolation, and the exhaustion, and the lack of services, to NOT KILL ANYONE? Letís not forget THAT little detail, shall we?

And what really, really pisses me off is when the murderers end up looking like victims. People have said, ďThe mother was a victim, too.Ē Excuse me? A woman who kills her son and commits suicide because she hates life with her kid has made herself a victim. Elizabeth Hodgins made a choice to put a gun to her own head. And when she made that choice, she decided to take her son with her. That was a choice. That was not inevitable. That didnít just happen.


I seriously do not understand why you insist on making these murders out to be all about how the parents are apparently stressed and mentally ill and how they're victims. They're killing their own children, full stop, end of line. They're killing those children because those children are disabled. It's time people stopped providing excuses for them and faced that fact.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i did see the news when diane sawyer called the 1 in 88 a terrorfying epidemic.i also saw robin mean from cnn talk of celibrating the lives and achievements of people with autism.its not all negative
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verdandi wrote:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jess-wilson/autism_b_1404565.html

Excerpt:

Quote:
On Saturday, March 31st, Patricia Corby flagged down a police officer to tell him that she'd just killed her autistic son, Danny. She drowned him in the bathtub, she said. He was four years old.

-
On Tuesday, March 6, 2012, Lester Hodgins came home to find his wife and son dead. According to police, Elizabeth Hodgins had shot their 22 year-old autistic son, then turned the gun on herself.

-
On May 31st of 2010, Stephanie Rochester -- according to her own report to police -- placed a plastic bag over her 6 month-old son, Rylan's head.

She told police that when the infant was still breathing some time later, she placed blankets over his face. The child was dead by morning.

According to the Colorado Daily, "During the initial investigation last summer, Rochester told detectives that she believed her baby, Rylan, was autistic, and that having an autistic child would emotionally and financially "ruin" her life."


And:

Quote:
In July of 2010, Saiqa Akhter called 911 to tell police that she had killed her two year-old daughter, Faryaal and her five year-old son, Zainmay. CNN described the recording of the 911 call. (Warning -- the story contains a video and recording of the 911 call. Please do NOT click on the link around children -- it may begin to play automatically.)

Quote:
On the tape, the woman tells the operator, "I killed them. I killed both of them. I killed my both kids... They are not doing anything. They are just blue. They are not taking any breaths. Their heart is not beating."
The operator asks her what happened.
"First, I tried to give them bathroom cleaner. I put in their mouth, but they don't drink it. I want them to drink it. They don't drink it... I grabbed their neck... and they are no more," she says on the tape.

The operator continues to talk to the woman to keep her on the phone until officers arrive. She asks why she killed her children, and the woman says she wanted normal children.

"They are autistic. I don't want my kids to be autistic," she is heard saying in an even tone.

The operator then asks her what she is feeling, and she says "nothing."


And another:

http://www.journeyswithautism.com/2012/04/07/can-we-use-the-word-evil-please/

Excerpt:

Quote:
Iíve been reading articles about the murders of disabled people, and Iím getting sick of the victims being defamed and written out of the stories of their own deaths. There was 22-year-old George Hodgins, an autistic man who is painted almost entirely as a source of endless stress. There was Daniel Corby, a four-year-old autistic boy who is painted almost entirely as a difficult child. There was Julie Cirella, an eight-year-old girl with cerebral palsy, who is painted almost entirely as a child in an agony of suffering that needed to end.

The comments to these stories feel like a punch in the gut every, single time. The mother must have been stressed. The mother must have been mentally ill. The mother must have been isolated and exhausted.

And? And? And??? How does that explain murder exactly? People are stressed, and mentally ill, and isolated, and exhausted, everywhere, every single day of the week, and most of them donít kill their children. And what about the person with the disability, who was hugely stressed, hugely isolated, and hugely exhausted by virtue of living with, you know, THE DISABILITY ITSELF, and who somehow managed, despite the stress, and the isolation, and the exhaustion, and the lack of services, to NOT KILL ANYONE? Letís not forget THAT little detail, shall we?

And what really, really pisses me off is when the murderers end up looking like victims. People have said, ďThe mother was a victim, too.Ē Excuse me? A woman who kills her son and commits suicide because she hates life with her kid has made herself a victim. Elizabeth Hodgins made a choice to put a gun to her own head. And when she made that choice, she decided to take her son with her. That was a choice. That was not inevitable. That didnít just happen.


I seriously do not understand why you insist on making these murders out to be all about how the parents are apparently stressed and mentally ill and how they're victims. They're killing their own children, full stop, end of line. They're killing those children because those children are disabled. It's time people stopped providing excuses for them and faced that fact.


I've never suggested that these parents are victims, I would appreciate it if you would not suggest that I did, unless you can provide a quote where I stated this.

In my personal opinion, there is only one victim the child. The courts have provided evidence that some of the parents that did not commit suicide were mentally ill and were not convicted because they were insane when they committed the act of violence. That's not my excuse that is the courts justification for not convicting the parent, in these cases.

NAMI and the NIMH are the institutions that state that mental illness is a factor that plays a role in almost every murder/suicide, not my opinion, their evidenced data from research.

It is the mental health professionals that are advising individuals and the news reporters not to paint these individuals that commit murder/suicide as monsters, not me.

Freedom of speech allows people and the media to express emotional opinions, regardless of objective data that suggests that it is more harmful than beneficial to do this, in regard to preventing future incidences of murder/homicide.

There is objective evidence provided by the courts that mental illness is a factor that led to some of these children's deaths. Whether or not the mental illness came first or the chronic stress came first is not entirely evident in some of the cases.

Stephanie Rochester was not convicted on murder based on a determination of insanity by the courts.

Corby is the same women addressed earlier in the thread, with suicidal ideation, of which has not yet gone to trial. There is a plea of not guilty, so the insanity defense is likely to be used by the defense. It is yet to be determined if she will be convicted of murder.

Akhter's attorney is also using insanity as a defense in that case, and there is to date no record of a conviction.

Interestingly, Akhter was described as a "muslim" killer in the media and received an overwhelming negative response of comments from the public, although it has been reported that she is potentially schizophrenic suffering from psychotic episodes.

This is what has been reported, not my personal opinion.

Schizophrenics have one of the highest rates of suicide, and many are victims of violence, however there is a subset in the group that statistically are shown about 10 times more likely to commit a homicide than the general population, per link below.

Some of the individuals that have stood trial for killing their children, that did not fulfill a murder suicide that were found not guilty of murder, were diagnosed schizophrenic and determined as insane at the time of the murder.

http://apt.rcpsych.org/content/12/4/239.full


My aim is to assist in providing the facts by professionals that could potentially prevent this type of incident from occuring in the future.

Sometimes the solutions are not going to be palatable for some, in cases where it is seen necessary to take children away from mentally ill individuals that are deemed as a risk to harm their children. This might have been the only solution that would have helped in the Akhtar case.

As I stated earlier in the thread there is a higher incidence of schizophrenia and other mental illnesses among the families of autistic individuals.

Awareness of the problem, identification of individuals chronically stressed and potentially mental ill, along with appropriate professional help is the effective answer for prevention as evidenced by the NAMI, NIMH, and the other mental health professionals, that I have provided in the thread.

It is disturbing to me when I see an advocacy effort in autism awareness that is evidenced as benefitting autistic individuals in the same sentence with autistic murders. It comes across to me as a statement that is worthy of a detailed discussion on the facts that either support or refute it.

Millions of people in the world are combining efforts to help autistic individuals through this light it up blue effort, while there are a few dozen individuals in the last decade that have committed horrifying acts of violence againsts their autistic children, that have been linked to mental illness both in the courts and by mental health organizations and mental health professionals.

It is easy for me to imagine how disturbing a comment like that would be to all the individuals in the world that are sincerely combining efforts together in this light it up blue iniative, in a sincere attempt to make the lives better for all autistic individuals.

I'm not part of that effort, but the millions of sincere individuals that are part of the iniative, and the thousands of autistic individuals that stand to benefit from it, deserve the greatest levels of respect.

My personal analysis of the violent acts are that they are tragedies that are evidenced as preventable, if the general public is properly informed with evidenced methods of preventing them.

For those that do have the intent of preventing them, the NIMH, NAMI, and mental health professionals are evidenced as the sources to seek information on how to prevent these tragedies from occuring in the future.
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vermontsavant
My father 1934 to 2010
Phoenix


Joined: Dec 08, 2010
Age: 39
Posts: 2156
Location: Bellows Falls,Vermont USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verdandi wrote:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jess-wilson/autism_b_1404565.html

Excerpt:

Quote:
On Saturday, March 31st, Patricia Corby flagged down a police officer to tell him that she'd just killed her autistic son, Danny. She drowned him in the bathtub, she said. He was four years old.

-
On Tuesday, March 6, 2012, Lester Hodgins came home to find his wife and son dead. According to police, Elizabeth Hodgins had shot their 22 year-old autistic son, then turned the gun on herself.

-
On May 31st of 2010, Stephanie Rochester -- according to her own report to police -- placed a plastic bag over her 6 month-old son, Rylan's head.

She told police that when the infant was still breathing some time later, she placed blankets over his face. The child was dead by morning.

According to the Colorado Daily, "During the initial investigation last summer, Rochester told detectives that she believed her baby, Rylan, was autistic, and that having an autistic child would emotionally and financially "ruin" her life."


And:

Quote:
In July of 2010, Saiqa Akhter called 911 to tell police that she had killed her two year-old daughter, Faryaal and her five year-old son, Zainmay. CNN described the recording of the 911 call. (Warning -- the story contains a video and recording of the 911 call. Please do NOT click on the link around children -- it may begin to play automatically.)

Quote:
On the tape, the woman tells the operator, "I killed them. I killed both of them. I killed my both kids... They are not doing anything. They are just blue. They are not taking any breaths. Their heart is not beating."
The operator asks her what happened.
"First, I tried to give them bathroom cleaner. I put in their mouth, but they don't drink it. I want them to drink it. They don't drink it... I grabbed their neck... and they are no more," she says on the tape.

The operator continues to talk to the woman to keep her on the phone until officers arrive. She asks why she killed her children, and the woman says she wanted normal children.

"They are autistic. I don't want my kids to be autistic," she is heard saying in an even tone.

The operator then asks her what she is feeling, and she says "nothing."


And another:

http://www.journeyswithautism.com/2012/04/07/can-we-use-the-word-evil-please/

Excerpt:

Quote:
Iíve been reading articles about the murders of disabled people, and Iím getting sick of the victims being defamed and written out of the stories of their own deaths. There was 22-year-old George Hodgins, an autistic man who is painted almost entirely as a source of endless stress. There was Daniel Corby, a four-year-old autistic boy who is painted almost entirely as a difficult child. There was Julie Cirella, an eight-year-old girl with cerebral palsy, who is painted almost entirely as a child in an agony of suffering that needed to end.

The comments to these stories feel like a punch in the gut every, single time. The mother must have been stressed. The mother must have been mentally ill. The mother must have been isolated and exhausted.

And? And? And??? How does that explain murder exactly? People are stressed, and mentally ill, and isolated, and exhausted, everywhere, every single day of the week, and most of them donít kill their children. And what about the person with the disability, who was hugely stressed, hugely isolated, and hugely exhausted by virtue of living with, you know, THE DISABILITY ITSELF, and who somehow managed, despite the stress, and the isolation, and the exhaustion, and the lack of services, to NOT KILL ANYONE? Letís not forget THAT little detail, shall we?

And what really, really pisses me off is when the murderers end up looking like victims. People have said, ďThe mother was a victim, too.Ē Excuse me? A woman who kills her son and commits suicide because she hates life with her kid has made herself a victim. Elizabeth Hodgins made a choice to put a gun to her own head. And when she made that choice, she decided to take her son with her. That was a choice. That was not inevitable. That didnít just happen.


I seriously do not understand why you insist on making these murders out to be all about how the parents are apparently stressed and mentally ill and how they're victims. They're killing their own children, full stop, end of line. They're killing those children because those children are disabled. It's time people stopped providing excuses for them and faced that fact.
aghogday specificly said it pissed him off when the murderers were made into victims.i dont believe anywhere in his post did he say the parents that killed there children were in any way victims
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vermontsavant wrote:
aghogday specificly said it pissed him off when the murderers were made into victims.i dont believe anywhere in his post did he say the parents that killed there children were in any way victims


The blogger in the article that Vernandi presented suggested that "people have said that the mother was a victim too", however I've searched that comment with Google and can't find anyone that has actually made that literal statement, other than bloggers that have suggested that someone made that statement. That's how urban myths get started on the internet. Smile I appreciate you backing me up on the fact that I have not stated that the parents were in any way victims.

However, I try not to practice the art of being pissed off; if I have sounded pissed off it has not been intentional, that requires a personal judgement of people; I would rather try to understand why people do the things they do, and offer a practical solution when possible to mediate conflicts that I don't see as logical. Particularly when well intentioned individuals are involved, which in my opinion is the case, except for the "Daily Mail" folks.

The blame game is an interesting one.

There are legitimate problems that many share in society, such as the lack of health care resources, mental health resources, support services for the disabled, care for the adults with disabilities; support services for caretakers of the disabled and many more legitimate issues.

The focus of the tragic incident, has been directed by some toward the problems that people can identify with and that they see in society. It is an opportunity that some use to evidence a society that is not healthy. Some blame society for the murder suicides. There is no empirical evidence for this.

The media is taking advantage of it in some cases, per example of the "Daily Mail", to suggest that there is a population of autistic parents out there on the brink of "snapping". There is no empirical evidence for this.

Some individuals commenting in various articles representing themselves as advocates of autism are suggesting that the marketing techniques of Autism Speaks is a problem associated with the issue. There is no empirical evidence for this.

The reality is that overall rates of homicide and violent acts have been steadily dropping in the US since 1991. There is less evidence of an epidemic of women killing their autistic children than there is of an autism epidemic.

The internet provides more opportunity for detection and the first real opportunity for individuals to comment on these acts. Even with the microscope of the internet the detection of these incidents are no more than a few in the course of a year. A few incidents per year is too many. One incident a year is too many.

The empirical evidence shows that the only person that can be blamed for the act is the person that commits it. The empirical evidence shows that with a pro-active effort that there is a potential that some of these incidences may be preventable.

An article from Science 2.0 that was written shortly after the woman identified as "Muslim" from Pakistan killed her two autistic children, that pretty much describes what I see as a balanced, objective viewpoint on the issue.

http://www.science20.com/science_autism_spectrum_disorders/blog/when_parents_kill_filicide_usually_accompanied_mental_illness

Quote:
Hatters Friedman et al. (2005) found that "Over three-fourths of our filicide-suicide offenders had evidence of mental illness. Less than two-thirds of those with mental illness had been in mental health treatment."

It would be convenient to twist this most recent filicide as an indictment of particular ideologies within the autistic community (indeed, this has already begun). The blame for these two children's murders does not rest in the autism community or in one particular faction of it. It does not rest with the public service announcements created by Autism Speaks (as some at Age of Autism would like to suggest). It doesn't rest with neurodiversity advocates. It doesn't rest with those who would cure autism at any cost. The blame rests squarely on the mother's shoulders.

There isn't enough information about this mother, her exposure to the autism community, her mental health, her level of support, period to answer why she did this act, what led her to that monstrous act. Is it more than likely, based on the research that has been done on filicide, that she is mentally ill? Yes. Does her lack of affect in the 911 call suggest mental illness? Yes. Can you be mentally ill and intentionally premeditate the murder of your children? Yes. Should she be held legally responsible? Yes, one way or another, she should be held accountable for her actions. They are reprehensible and without defense. Looking for other people to blame to further one's own ideology is irresponsible.

We do, as a society, need to do a better job of providing support to families, at providing education, and appropriate mediations. Was this a family in need of better support? What access to services were there? Was there a history of mental health issues? Speculation is pointless. Waiting for the facts in the case make sense here. What does seem clear is that the mother did do this. What is clear is that this is an unacceptable act.

So, leaving that aside, what do we know about parents of autistic children, coping-wise? Pottie and Ingram (2008) found that the severity of autistic symptoms was not correlated with parental daily mood. They found that in "terms of significant predictors of daily positive mood, on average, 10 coping responses were found to predict daily positive mood." Pottie and Ingram found that "higher levels of daily positive mood were predicted by" the following type of coping: "Seeking Support coping," "Problem-Focused coping," "Positive Reframing coping," "Emotional Regulation coping," and "Compromise coping" while "lower levels of daily positive mood were associated with Escape coping", "Blaming coping," "Withdrawal coping," and "Helplessness coping."

In other words, how parents choose to cope is more important than the severity of the situation they are dealing with. If you're feeling overwhelmed, if you're feeling under-supported, then you need to reach out, you need to let people know. And we need to be there, be ready and willing to offer our shoulders and our time to those who are struggling.
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Verdandi
Miss Kitty Fantastico
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vermontsavant wrote:
aghogday specificly said it pissed him off when the murderers were made into victims.i dont believe anywhere in his post did he say the parents that killed there children were in any way victims


I didn't catch that sentence. But: If it pisses him off, why does he keep doing it? Using the same excuses everyone else uses - the pressure, the possibility of mental illness, etc. to argue for understanding and compassion for those who do kill their children? Finding explanations that mitigate their responsibility?
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My father 1934 to 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verdandi wrote:
vermontsavant wrote:
aghogday specificly said it pissed him off when the murderers were made into victims.i dont believe anywhere in his post did he say the parents that killed there children were in any way victims


I didn't catch that sentence. But: If it pisses him off, why does he keep doing it? Using the same excuses everyone else uses - the pressure, the possibility of mental illness, etc. to argue for understanding and compassion for those who do kill their children? Finding explanations that mitigate their responsibility?
after re reading it may not have been aghogday who said that,there was no name under that quote.i did not mean my post as attackative towards you.
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