Being away for “March Break” this week, I sat down to watch some t.v. Being with family, I found myself watching the program Criminal Minds which is definitely not my viewing “style”. This episode, The Good Earth, had me particularly disturbed.
The criminal subject in question, a young woman, captures and force feeds men in her barn. She later kills them and grinds their dismembered bodies in farm machinery and spreads the remains in order to create good earth. She also attacks a pregnant woman, but the gruesome details here are even more mind boggling.
Is this really entertainment? What do these t.v. programs say about our viewing appetites? I can say that I will never look at a tomato quite the same anymore as the human fertilizer grew bumper tomato crops.
The other extremely disturbing aspect was the woman’s rationale for killing. The earth was intended to heal both herself and her daughter from illness: an illness that was not real but was clearly a loss of contact with reality and distressing. Although the actual terminology was not used in this episode, in the medical world, this woman was definitely experiencing psychosis which made her violent. So while the fertilizer in this episode might have been good for the tomatoes, it did nothing for the perception of psychosis.
I could write statistic after statistic arguing the fact that people with psychosis are no more dangerous than the general public. But will this change your mind?
Do you know that you can loose touch with reality and have psychosis if you have brain damage or a tumour? What about too much alcohol? Most of us also know that it can be caused by drugs such as cocaine. Did you know that psychosis can also be caused by illnesses such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimers or Aids or certain forms of epliepsy? And then there’s an extreme lack of sleep, or in some cases too much caffeine can also cause psychosis….
Psychosis is an illness, it needs treatment and it needs understanding. It can happen to anyone, it could happen to you. If it did, would you be a criminal?