Posted 17 September 2012 - 08:20 PM
Jeez, this topic is almost as sensitive as abortion.
I believe a mentally handicapped person should NOT be prosecuted. I understand they are people, just like everyone else, and should be treated as such...but the fact of the matter is, they are not as capable mentally as a "regular person" would be. I have a cousin who is mentally handicapped and I know many of the minor choices in life that he makes aren't always of his own decision, but of the view of his disability.
For example, because he is handicapped he does not understand social limitations. One day while standing in line, at one of the Kamloops Blazers games, someone tried to get by him. This person did not excuse themselves or wait for a gap, the individual pushed my cousin to get him out of the way, and continued to walk. My cousin became agitated and glared at the man. This individual, clearly a hostile person by nature, began to heckle my cousin, calling him a "retard" and "dumbass", which upset my cousin who proceeded to sock him in the face. Immediately after throwing the punch, my cousin began to cry. He knew it was wrong, but he did not have the mental capability to stop himself from doing it. Just one example, and a minor one at that.
Then comes the problem of diagnosing a "mental disability". A man with down syndrome and a man with schizophrenia can not be placed on the same pedestal, because one is far more of a disability than the other.
It's a tough one.