Elie Mystal Doesn’t Care if His Poisonous Words Stigmatize Sick People – RedState

Elie Mystal Doesn’t Care if His Poisonous Words Stigmatize Sick People – RedState

Elie Mystal must not know anyone who suffers from mental illness. Of course, I’m joking, as that would be an extraordinarily difficult thing to achieve, since most of us know someone who affected by it — or we ourselves suffer from the disease. Surveys show that 1 in 5 adults live with mental illness today, according to Mentalhealth.net, which also reported this troubling study finding:

A longitudinal study showed that the percentage of Americans who described mental illness in conjunction with violent behavior nearly doubled over the span of the 46-year-long study.

Yet Mystal, a progressive author and justice correspondent at The Nation, chose to take to his Twitters on Friday, and express this oh-so-witty retort about a viral Twitter image:

The law allows these crazy people to shoot me, or my children, and claim stand your ground, and unless a passer by takes a video of them shooting me for no reason, they walk free. … so question is not “say something or let go” it’s “ignore or leave whole store.”

Not only is this objectively untrue (there are no rampant hordes of white people, roaming our country, hunting down Black people to “[shoot] for no reason [then being allowed to] walk free,” but it’s dangerous rhetoric because there are people who will believe what he’s saying is true.

Now, I get that it might seem like low hanging fruit here to point to examples of high-profile leftists wearing inflammatory or cause-related clothing. Last September, we wrote about Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wearing a dress emblazoned with the words: “Tax The Rich” to attend the Met Gala. My colleague Brad Slager wrote on it, as well.

There was also celeb and Hillary 2016 surrogate Martha Plimpton who, during that election cycle, donned a dress that visually expressed how much she loved that she had had, not just one but several abortions.

And likewise, people on the left can point to singer and outspoken Trump supporter Joy Villa and her pro-life “message dress” in the 2018 Grammys ceremony.

But there’s a difference here. More recently, Mike Miller, among other writers at RedState, have written about the upcoming confirmation battle on Biden Supreme Court nominee, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, set up to replace retiring liberal justice Stephen Breyer.

In his piece Thursday, Mike included this tweet from Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), exposing Jackson’s extremist record/judicial philosophy on sentencing for sex offenders:

Well, on this topic, Mystal continued his brand of reckless talk on MSNBC, in an interview with host Tiffany Cross Saturday morning, about Hawley and other Republicans speaking out against  Jackson’s nomination.

Mystal said:

What Josh Hawley is doing, let’s be very clear. What Josh Hawley is doing, when he tries to do this, is he’s trying to get [Jackson] killed.

He is trying to get violence done against a Supreme Court nominee. And we know this, because when these people go off, making their ridiculous claims about child pornography, we know that some of their people show up, violently, to do stuff — as happened to the New Hampshire pizza parlor [PizzaGate].

Listen for yourself below.

Now, Mystal prattles on a bit more about PizzaGate, but let’s get back to what’s really going on here — the systemic stigmatization of the people who are suffering from actual mental illness as violent criminals who are out of control.

In a 2015 piece on the ongoing stigma, MTV News interviewed a psychology professor on the very real harm that calling people “crazy” has on anyone who is actually suffering from the often debilitating illness.

“These labels can be very upsetting for people with mental illness because they are often used as shorthand for hurtful processes, mostly having to do with delineating who is one of us and who is ‘other,’” Nathaniel G. Wade, a psychology professor at Iowa State University, told MTV News.

They carry “a label and meaning that is related to being not-normal: separate, ill, different, not-like-us.”

Well, since Mystal is a progressive, who naturally has abiding trust in government, maybe he would listen to what the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has to say on the matter.

A 2016 report from the National Institutes of Health called this stigma of stereotyping the mentally ill as no better than criminals a “millennium of prejudice”:

Far more than any other type of illness, mental disorders are subject to negative judgements and stigmatization. Many patients not only have to cope with the often devastating effects of their illness, but also suffer from social exclusion and prejudices.

Stigmatization of the mentally ill has a long tradition, and the word “stigmatization” itself indicates the negative connotations: in ancient Greece, a “stigma” was a brand to mark slaves or criminals. For millennia, society did not treat persons suffering from depression, autism, schizophrenia and other mental illnesses much better than slaves or criminals.

But he and the left probably won’t change, no matter what science says or the reality really is. The sad fact is that Mystal, in his attempt to dehumanize and “other” people whom he disagrees with politically, doesn’t care who is hurt in the process — and that’s shameful.

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Originally Posted on: https://redstate.com/beccalower/2022/03/19/elie-mystal-doesnt-care-if-his-poisonous-words-stigmatize-sick-people-n537891
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