This is what happens when the prison becomes the default first-line of care for people with serious mental health issues. This is what happens with prison guards grow up in a culture demeaning people with disabilities. This is what happens when you feed the cult of compliance. This is what happens when you crowd the prisons to overflowing in the name of the war on drugs.
You get guards inventing the sadistic "retard olympics" for their amusement, as alleged in the following lawsuit from a former prisoner with bipolar disorder. Here's the gist:
[Hicks] claims that jail guards staged the "Retard Olympics" on several occasions at the York County Prison from 2008 through 2013.This is obviously an extreme case, but I contend that other kinds of casual ableist depictions of people with disabilities as objects for amusement feeds into this model of torture.
He claims that he and other inmates were subjected to "events" that included:
being choked to the point of unconsciousness before pressure was released;
being punched in the arms and legs until their limbs were numb;
being punched repeatedly in the legs with the goal of inflicting a "dead leg," which had no sensation and prevented walking;
being punched in the shoulders to see if prisoners could take the blow without falling;
having inmates wrestle each other until an officer decided there was a winner;
forced consumption of food to make prisoners sick and vomit, including drinking a gallon of milk in one hour, eating an entire spoonful of cinnamon, snorting spicy ramen noodle flavoring powder, snorting crushed hard candy, eating entire pieces of fruit, skin and all, drinking a bottle of water containing pepper spray foam from prison security supplies, and drinking a concoction known as "Mystery Soup" containing olives that had been left unrefrigerated for several weeks, mixed with Windex or similar cleaning supplies.
This is obviously an extreme case, but I contend that other kinds of casual ableist depictions of people with disabilities as objects for amusement feeds into this model of torture.
Welcome to Down syndrome awareness month.
Next week is Mental Illness awareness week
October 10 is World Mental Health day
Are you feeling more aware now? This is what happens when people with disabilities are objectified.