An Evel Kneivel, Snake River Canyon-sized jump to a conclusion

From the Washington Post

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Well, great!

At least that last child, running in horror as his mother followed him with that look in her eyes, screaming as she dragged him back to the bathtub, bumping into the body of his dead sibling as he was held under, gulping that first lungful of water as he looked at his mother’s face and felt her hands holding him under …

at least his and the other deaths provide a “platform” for feminists! I feel a lot better now.

And, uh, before we start erecting shrines to the murderess, howzabout we find out just how much postpartum depression she was suffering, and just how aware she was of what she was doing, OK?

What they are tacitly saying is, surely Yates was not herself, because she committed horrible, unthinkable crimes, one after the other.

If that’s the logic, where was NOW for the Manson Family, Son of Sam, John Wayne Gacy, Jeffrey Dahmer or Ted Bundy? I’m sure they had their blue days, too.

P.S. “One of our feminist beliefs is to be there for other women?” Forgive Juanita Broaddrick and Kathleen Willey if they vomit now.

I sincerely hope that the NOW rethinks their position on this. “We’re going to help defend her because she’s female” is one of the stupidest policy statements I’ve ever seen.

If you accept insanity as a defense, how is this imbalance different?

You can’t defend a principle on the nicest clear-cut case, you have to defend it on the worst case scenario. Now we can see how far society willing to go in regards to the insanity defense.

I have no opinion on this case, I haven’t read enough.

I do agree that the NOW statment seems to be posturing on the bodies of the murder victims, but in a dirty case like this no one who takes a stand can come off clean. Besides, they said the fund was for other cases and education too.

I’ll stick my head out and say: Why not? I support NOW’s action.

Jeu_D’esprit - By your logic, the ACLU should leap into action anytime someone is arrested in the U.S., due to the possibility that someone’s civil rights were violated. You can’t have a standing policy of defending every case on a worst-case scenario basis. You have to use common sense and good judgment to determine whether there’s any merit to the argument that the defendent is not guilty, for whatever reason.

FWIW, I think that NOW is off its rocker. PP depression may represent a particularly nasty state of mental health, but come on… Can it alter someone’s perceptions to the point that they can’t tell the difference between right and wrong?

Any kind of depression sucks, but it takes more than “depression” to cause someone to completely lose their sense of right and wrong.

Gosh. I read that statement totally differently, as NOW saying it wanted to use this horrible incident as an opportunity to educate people on the very serious problems of postpartum depression and psychosis. Andrea Yates and her husband certainly could have used such education, as (it is reported) that she had a serious postpartum depression after her second child. Perhaps if they’d known she might be in danger of increasing depressions with every childbirth, she would have used some appropriate method of birth control.
As she is a woman, suffering from an illness that afflicts only women, I see no hypocrisy in an organization dedicated to making women’s lives better contributing money to her defense/hospitalization.

Maybe you should have quoted the first paragraph, Milossarian

Post Partum depression - probably not.

Post Partum psychosis?. You betcha. Sort of the definition of psychosis, innit?

Yet another example of the pendulum swinging too far the other way.

Had women been treated fairly in the past, there would be no NOW.

So there it is. An organization that came into being to raise awareness of injustices has turned into a political force with money, clout, and injustices of their own.

Anybody that’s surprised by this, raise a paw.

Boy, I wonder where this “let’s defend anyone who happens to be female” attitude was for Kathleen Willey or Linda Tripp… :rolleyes:

Where do you get that from this:

?

Seems to me there’s a difference between illegal wiretapping and unproven allegations and postpartum depression. But, to reference the GWB thread, can’t you all get over it? Must every reference to Democrats or feminists get a reply of “But Clinton…”?

So are you suggesting that wiretapping and unproven allegations are worse than multiple-murder?

If it is proven that the woman in question was suffering from a severe mental illness brought on by pregnancy, and was therefore not in control of her actions, then yes, I’d say the intentional lawbreaking is far worse.

(There was another thread about this, where Post Partum Psychosis and the fact that the mother had been taken off a serious anti-psychotic - Hadol, I think - before the birth of her fifth. I haven’t managed to find it yet, though. Was here in the pit.)

No one is saying this wasn’t a tragedy. What the women of NOW appear to me to be saying is that it was most likely a preventable tragedy, and one that indicates that there is a great need to educate people about PPD and PPP in general.

I very nearly got called to a similar trial here in the Ventura County area of CA where a woman whose husband had been cheating on her and was planning to divorce her is accused of shooting three of her four sons to death, then trying to take her own life. The difference? None of the children were young enough that PPD/PPP is indicated in her case. She’s still pleading insanity. (Actually, she’s pleading “not guilty,” then “not guilty by reason of insanity,” but I don’t pretend to understand how that trick works.)

Were mentioned. Were mentioned, consarn it.

I support NOW raising money to educate people about Post Partum Depression and/or Psychosis. I do not, however, support their raising money “to defend Andrea Yates”. She murdered her five children in a brutal and heartless manner. I wish they’d put all of the money they raise toward the education, it seems to me it would do a lot more good.

Methinks some people have been whooshed.

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I see you’ve already rendered the ruling that she was out of her gourd at the time of the killings. Kind of like NOW.

Look! A possible malady that is exclusive to women! A trend-du-jour! (stampede)

We won’t let things like court-ordered psychiatric evaluations – or the ultimate finding of truth – get in our way.

I’ll preface this by saying that I do not approve of what this woman did nor am I going to defend her. However, being condemned to live in Texas as I am, we’ve all been pretty much overwhelmed with the media blitz on this case, and I did want to throw in a couple of pieces of information that may not have been covered in the national media. (Needless to say, it’s been more than overcovered in Texas.)

What I’ve gathered from what I’ve read is that she had severe bouts of depression after the births of her children in the past – yet this went untreated. If she’d developed diabetes as a result of pregnancy, you can darn well bet that the doctor would have been warning her about the risks pregnancy posed to her physical health (or if he didn’t, he should’ve been sued for malpractice.)

I think the point NOW is trying to make (although I will agree that raising money for her legal defense is not the way to do it) is that a risk to mental health should be treated with the same gravity as a risk to physical health, and yet this is not being done. Nor are women told about this risk to their health. Although I have no children myself, I have sat in with five or six friends who have had them, and although a couple of them were absolute basket cases afterwards, their doctors pretty much shrugged it off as, “it’s just one of those woman things,” threw some pills at it and left them to cope on their own. That’s led me to believe that a lot of doctors lump postpartum depression in with with cramps as women’s illnesses which are largely psychosomatic.

I’ll be fair and say that while I’ll concede the possibility that some women might seize upon postpartum depression as an excuse for afterbirth ills, the fact remains that we do know that depression is a form of mental illness, is caused by chemical imbalances in the body, and therefore, it should be treated as any other health risk a woman may have when bearing a child – yet isn’t. In this case, it was sloughed off as unimportant, and we all see the consequences.

Anyway, hope that helps. :slight_smile:

Now who’s jumping on a bandwagon? “She’s too evil to be crazy!”

Given the facts of the case, such as her previous diagnosis of PPD, there’s a prima facie case for PPD being the operative condition now. No one’s acquitted her; NOWs involvement shouldn’t be construed as a declaration of her innocence. They’re doing what they do, which is supporting a cause (education about conditions peculiar to women) for which they’re advocates.

Jebus Christ
Didn’t see you idiots jumping to Susan Smith’s side when she rolled her kids to a watery grave. Hey, believe it or not…PEOPLE ARE PSYCHOS. Don’t matter if they got tits or not.
NOW better SERIOUSLY think about backing up this tripe simply because she is a woman

Bullshit, Milo, pure and simple. Post-partum depression has been around for a long time. Presumably so has Post-partum psychosis.

I found the threads I was thinking about (they were in GD, not here in the Pit), and in one of them someone mentions their grandmother being diagnosed with PPD and institutionalized. There’s also a discussion of PPP in the second. Not a new phenomenon. One that is detectable by chemical imbalance.

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=76016

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=75354

I’m with Lionors. I’m all for raising awareness of PPD. But why not sponsor a fucking symposium? Why not fund some researcj in this area? Take out an ad in the New York Times? That strikes me as a more effective way to raise awareness, knowledge, etc.

I don’t have a problem with the desire to help a woman without resources who might be at risk for not getting a reasonable assessment of her psychosis in the courtroom–but don’t try to snow me with some story that this is the ticket to getting the issue in the public consciousness. I’m plenty tired of judicial proceedings being used at entertainment & media events to further someone’s platform.

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And what evidence do you (or NOW) have that this condition so significantly skewed her judgement that she had no control over her actions?

If we’re all going to play the pre-judge game, I seem to recall in Newsweek that the cops who responded to the scene found Mrs. Yates pretty damn lucid, and very understanding of what she’d just done. I, of course, wouldn’t draw any ultimate conclusions from that, because there’s a lot that still needs to be determined by law enforcement and psychiatric evaluators. But now for NOW.

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The article said they are raising money for her defense. Don’t play semantics games. They aren’t “involved,” they are “contributing to her defense.”

You might say that that doesn’t mean they want her acquitted, only to go to some institution to get treatment. Again, a mighty leap to a conclusion that she was insane, didn’t know what she was doing and/or couldn’t control herself.

And how will you feel about this if psychiatric evaluations reveal that yes, Yates suffered from severe PPD, but it did not impair her judgement to the point that she did not know what she was doing?

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I didn’t intend to imply that they were not. I intended “possible” to mean “the possible cause for the murders of the children.”

NOW is rendering a ruling on why these deaths occurred before the experts have. Why do you suppose they are doing that?