Bette Midler Blames Nation's Mental Health Problems On...Ronald Reagan?
Numerous conservative commentators over the years have called liberalism a mental disorder.
Potentially giving credence to this argument was Bette Midler Wednesday who actually blamed the late Ronald Reagan for today's mental health problems:
It feels as if mental health treatment is one of the most intractable problems we have had since Ronald Reagan emptied the institutions.— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) January 17, 2013
For those completely at a loss for words, responding to growing public pressure about the condition of California's state-run mental institutions, Governor Reagan in 1967 signed the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act.
The best explanation of this piece of legislation that went into effect in 1972 comes from Wikipedia:
- To end the inappropriate, indefinite, and involuntary commitment of mentally disordered persons, people with developmental disabilities, and persons impaired by chronic alcoholism, and to eliminate legal disabilities;
- To provide prompt evaluation and treatment of persons with serious mental disorders or impaired by chronic alcoholism;
- To guarantee and protect public safety;
- To safeguard individual rights through judicial review;
- To provide individualized treatment, supervision, and placement services by a conservatorship program for gravely disabled persons;
- To encourage the full use of all existing agencies, professional personnel and public funds to accomplish these objectives and to prevent duplication of services and unnecessary expenditures;
- To protect mentally disordered persons and developmentally disabled persons from criminal acts.
The Act in effect ended all hospital commitments by the judiciary system, except in the case of criminal sentencing, e.g., convicted sexual offenders, and those who were "gravely disabled", defined as unable to obtain food, clothing, or housing [Conservatorship of Susan T., 8 Cal. 4th 1005 (1994)]. It did not, however, impede the right of voluntary commitments. It expanded the evaluative power of psychiatrists and created provisions and criteria for holds.
Sounds awful, doesn't it?
Now, more than 40 years after its enactment, Midler tied today's mental health problems to this?
See paragraph one.