Whether it be someone else’s life or their own, it is still the taking of a life, which is illegal. What is Crime? A crime is any behavior that IS punishable by imprisonment or fine (or both). In the United States, an act is considered criminal when Congress or a state or local legislative body has defined it as such. But why are some acts defined as crimes while others arena? While whole books have been written on this subject, here a few straightforward reasons why crimes are crimes: Many acts that we consider crimes today were considered crimes under English law hen the United States became a country. In large part the U. S. Adopted English law as its own. Many crimes have their origin in moral precepts that originally were enforced by churches and were eventually taken over by the secular state. Acts carried out with an antisocial or “evil” intent are usually considered worthy of punishment. Acts that may have been acceptable at one time (such as physical punishment of a child, drinking while driving or sexual harassment) are redefined as crimes when society convinces lawmakers to criminality them. Ultimately, what is and is not a crime is, to an extent, arbitrary and a reflection of who has the power to decide, but with some notable exceptions.
For example, drug laws, the most common crimes have been considered crimes for centuries and most people agree that they should be. On the other hand, in recent years, the U. S. Supreme Court has struck down certain federal crimes, finding that Congress had no authority under the Constitution to create them. Examples of federal crimes that have been disallowed are statutes forbidding the sale of firearms within a certain distance of schools and allowing rape prosecutions in federal court. Under Hess decisions, the question of which crimes may be created by Congress, and which crimes must be left to the states, remains an open one.
What is Suicide? Suicide is the deliberate taking of one’s own life. Suicide may be compulsory, prescribed by custom or enjoined by the authorities, usually as an alternative to death at the hands of others, or it may be committed for personal motives. It could be argued that suicide is such a personal act that it involves only personal psychology and purely individual thought processes. Depending on the time and place, it may be regarded as a heroic deed or condemned by elisions and civil authorities.
This act takes the lives of more than 30,000 Americans every year-I Over 1 ,900 Americans visit Emergency Departments for self-inflicted injuries-2 There are four types of suicide: Egoistic, Altruistic, Anomic, and Fatalistic. In less traditional societies the causes of suicide are more difficult to establish. The problem has been approached from two different angles: the sociological, which stresses social pressures and the importance of social integration, and the psychoanalytic, which centers on the driving force of guilt and anxiety and the inverting of aggressive impulses.
The best thing to do is listen. Try to make yourself available and take them seriously, but do not try to do it all on your on, get support also. Suicide is a very serious thing. 4 Every 18 minutes another life is lost to suicide Every day 80 Americans take their own lives. Suicide is now the 1 lath leading cause of death in Americans. For every two victims of homicide in the United States, there are three persons who take their own lives. There are now twice as many deaths due to suicide as to HIVE/ AIDS. Between 1952 and 1 995, the incidence of suicide among adolescents ND young adults nearly tripled.
In the month prior to their suicide, 75% of elderly persons had visited a physician. Over half of all suicides occur in adult men, aged 25-65. Many who attempt suicide never seek professional care. Males are four times more likely to die from suicide than are females. More teenagers and young adults die from suicide than from cancer, heart disease, AIDS, birth defects, strokes, pneumonia and influenza, and chronic lung disease, combined. 5 Should Suicide be Considered as a Crime and Illegal? Self-killing is expressly condemned by Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and attempts are punishable by law in certain countries.
Suicide was a felony in 1 lath century England because the self-murderer was considered to have broken the bond of fealty, and the suicide’s property was forfeited to the king. Suicides were interred on public highways with a stake driven through the heart; this practice was observed as late as 1823. In 1961, Great Britain abolished criminal penalties for attempting to commit suicide. Very few U. S. States still list suicide as a crime, but most states have laws against helping someone commit suicide. Each Of us is responsible for our own actions and life choices.
In a sense then, an individual may have the right to do as they wish with their life, including to end it if they so desire. Western societies in particular tend to emphasize individual rights over communal rights and responsibilities. However, every person exists as part off larger neuron of relationships of various types which sets the context in which an individual’s rights and responsibilities exist. People who feel lonely, isolated, distressed and hopeless about their future can find it extremely difficult to recognize opportune relationships which may exists around them.
This often causes them to grossly underestimate both the degree of support which could be gained from those around them, and the impact that their suicide would have should they complete it. If suicide become legal rights, the belief that people attempting suicide are deranged and in need of psychological help. Those seeking suicide would be legally entitled to be left alone to do something irremediable, based on a distorted assessment of their circumstances, without genuine help.
An attempt at suicide, some psychologists say, is often challenge to see if anyone out there really cares. 6 Accepting a “right to suicide” would create a legal presumption of sanity, preventing appropriate mental health treatment. Almost all who commit suicide have mental health problems Few people, if any, simply sit down and make a cool, rational decision to commit suicide. In fact, studies have indicated that 93-94% of those committing suicide suffer from some identifiable mental disorder. In one such study, conducted by Dry. Eli Robbins of suicides occurring in SST.
Louis, Missouri, 47% of those committing suicide were diagnosed as suffering from either schizophrenic panic disorders or from affective disorders such as depressive disorders, dyslectic disorders, or bipolar disorder. An additional 25% suffered from alcoholism while another 15% had some recognizable but undiagnosed psychiatric disorder. 4% were found to have organic brain syndrome, 2% were schizophrenic, and 1 % were drug addicts. 7 Suicide is often a desperate step taken by individuals who consider their problems so intractable as to make their situations hopeless.
But experts in psychology recognize the evaluations these individuals make of their personal situations are flawed. The suicidal person suffering from depression typically undergoes severe emotional and physical strain. This physical and emotional exhaustion impairs basic cognition, creates unwarranted self-blame, and generally lowers overall self esteem, all of which easily lead to distorted judgments. These effects also contribute to the sense of hopelessness that is the primary trigger of most suicidal behavior.
Studies have shown that during the period of their obsession with the idea of killing themselves, suicidal individuals tend to think in a very rigid, dichotomous way, seeing everything n “all or nothing” terms; they are unable to see any range of genuine alternatives. Many seem to be locked into automatic thoughts and responses, rather than accurately to understand and respond to their environment. Suicide attempters also tend to maximize their problems, minimize their achievements, and generally to ignore the larger context of their situations.
They sometimes have inordinately unrealistic expectations of themselves. During the period of their disorders, these individuals usually see life as much more traumatic as it actually is and view temporary’ minor tiebacks as major permanent ones. In a society where there is much stigma and ignorance regarding mental illness, a person who feels suicidal may fear that other people will think they are “crazy’ if they tell them how they feel, and so may be reluctant to reach out for help in a crisis.
In any case, describing someone as “crazy”, which has strong negative connotations, probably is not helpful and is more likely to dissuade someone from seeking help which may be very beneficial, whether they have a diagnosable mental illness or not. People who are suffering from a mental illness such as schizophrenia or clinical depression do have sign efficiently higher suicide rates than average, although they are still in the majority of attempters. For these people, having their illness correctly diagnosed can mean that an appropriate Most of those attempting suicide are ambivalent; often, the attempt is a cry for help.
Studies and descriptions of suicide attempters who Were prevented from committing suicide by outside interventions demonstrate that most suicidal individuals have neither an unequivocal nor an irreversible determination to die. For example, one study conducted by two psychiatrists in Seattle, Washington found 75% of the 96 suicide attempters they studied were actually quite ambivalent about their intentions to die. It is not actually a desire to die, but the desire to accomplish something by the attempt that drives the attempter to consider such a drastic option.
Suicide is the means, not the end. Often, suicide attempters are apparently seeking to establish some means of communication with significant persons in their lives or to test those persons’ care and affection. Psychologists have concluded that there motives for attempting suicide include retaliatory abandonment-9, aggression turned inward, a search for control, manipulative guilt, punishment, escapism, frustration, or an attempt to influence someone else. Communication of these feelings, rather than death is the true aim of the suicide attempter.
This explains why, paradoxically but truthfully, many say after an obvious suicide attempt that they really did not want to kill themselves. Psychiatrists have long advanced the opinion that underlying a suicidal person’s alleged wish to die is actually a wish to be rescued, so that a suicide attempt may quite accurately be described, not as a wish to “leave it all behind,” but as a “cry for help. “l O Proof that most individuals attempting suicide are ambivalent, temporarily depressed, and suffering from treatable disorders is the facts that so few, once rescued and treated, ever actually go on to commit suicide.
In one American study, less than 4% of 886 suicide attempters actually went on to kill themselves in the 5 years following their initial attempt. A Swedish study published in 1977 of individuals who attempted suicide at some time between 1 933 and 1 942 found that only 10. % of those eventually killed themselves in the subsequent 35 years. This suggests that intervention to keep an individual alive is actually the course most likely to honor that individual’s true wish or to respect the person’s “autonomy. Summary Whether it is legal or not makes no difference to someone who is in such distress that they are trying to kill themselves. Depression can be treated. Alcoholism can be overcome. The difficult situations and circumstances of life which, at the moment, seem permanent and pervasive often dissolve or resolve in time. The emotional and cognitive patterns of thought and motion which cloud the suicide attempters judgment and lead to feelings of utter despair and hopelessness, with proper psychiatric care, can be rechargeable in more rational, positive ways.