Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Why Blame It On Alcohol?



Why Blame It On Alcohol?



There is a rule in psychiatry called McNaughton rule. This rule applies to anyone who is accused of committing a crime and then claims that he was mad or insane when he did the alleged act. This rule was first introduced almost 150 years ago in England when a guy called Daniel McNaughton tried to kill the then British Prime Minister Robert Peel but instead shot dead the PM's private secretary Drummond whom he mistook for the PM. When the assassin's lawyer later claimed that he was mad and hence should not be hanged but sent to a hospital for treatment- the McNaughton rules was formed. These are a bunch of criteria which determine whether someone is really insane or just feigning insanity after the criminal act. It includes criteria like checking to see if the criminal was already undergoing treatment for his condition before the crime or if it is just a newly developed condition (thought up after the crime) to escape justice.

I am not a psychiatrist and I don’t remember much of the rules (refer to Wikipedia for full details) but suffice it to say that the rule in McNaughton helps in preventing false alibis and avoiding responsibility for crimes committed. The general public in India is very familiar with McNaughton's rules (even if they don’t know the actual name) because we are used to seeing our politicians get sick (mostly of heart disease) whenever they are accused of a crime and are about to be arrested. Almost every single politician immediately suffers from chest pain and gets admitted in hospital doesn’t he? And by the time they get discharged from treatment the initial media scrutiny goes away into yet another “breaking news" and so they are never held responsible for their actions and crimes.

Likewise there are a lot of people out there who do things knowingly and then get away easily by blaming it all on alcohol. As far as I know ethyl alcohol when ingested in large quantities degrades fine reflexes, causes loss of balance and impaired (double) vision - which is why drunk drivers cause accidents. But alcohol in no way encourages crime- crime which was not previously in the persons mind before- to say so otherwise is to lie. Alcohol provides an alibi for doing many things, things which people lack the courage to do so but always want to do. It’s like the guy who is always afraid of his wife’s stinging tongue coming home drunk to beat up his wife and then blaming it all on his drunkenness - even while secretly enjoying getting even with her abuse.
                                                                                                         
It’s like getting inside a lift and cleverly pushing all the buttons of the lift to make sure that it does not stop at any single floor and then going down on your knees in front of a girl young enough to be your daughter (daughters classmate in this case) and after forcibly lifting up her skirt and pulling down her panties indulging in cunnilingus (oral sex) with her despite her attempts to escape from your grasping hands and your probing tongue violating her body. When it is such a difficult sexual act to perform for even sober men is it scarcely believable that a drunk man could do it with ease all the while physically controlling (with brute strength) a struggling girl? And how does an intelligent man expect other intelligent people to believe that it was all done in a state of drunkenness? If alcohol had a voice of its own it would be screaming in its defense. (And as a side point I wish someone would explain to me what real purpose is solved by the police insisting on a potency test when it was not a question of erection or penetration but oral sex? I know rules are rules but do they have to be applied so blindly all the time?)

Anyway the point of this post is that when people get drunk and do certain things - they do it clearly and soberly knowing what they are doing and enjoying the act of doing. In fact they may have even planned it and fantasized about it for long and were just waiting for the right set of circumstances to do it. Blaming alcohol for their actions is like pretending to be mad after assassinating the prime minister. Doesn’t wash. There are no drunken crimes- there are only crimes. And all of these crimes are committed by cowards who use alcohol as an excuse. So the next time someone blames alcohol for their actions- it means they are not brave enough to admit that they enjoyed what they did regardless of the consequences. And not because they were drunk. So any number of apology letters blaming alcohol for causing and I quote “ a temporary lapse” is just splitting straws and throwing chaff. Even without alcohol this one was waiting to happen given the right circumstances and it finally did. Isn’t that the truth? 




5 comments:

  1. Some fact are written in ur speculation....... its ur thinking and assumptions based on the tv shows/news.....irritating to even read..... it jus depicts how a woman can think to earn sympathy.... some woman have in mind that all women are good like them.. but not really .. they are unaware that most of them are partners of illegal relationships, because they need it for gratification... they come to complain only when it comes to light to refrain herself from the allegation and social stigma... Thats clear nowadays. Do any women can assure no women are interested in illegal relationship, No teen girl crave to... everything they need but want to escap when it comes before law... Y woman doesnt complain on the first day when a man misbehave, if so. Y does she had to sustain for many years... y does a teen girls parent complaint when their daughters love and sleep with her lover or friend??

    there are many thisng that law cannot take into account... because they give priority for a women, taking her version as a godly word.. foolishness prevails ..

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    1. Dass ji...i am thankful for your allowing that atleast "Some facts" are there in what you term "speculation...of course, most of this is specualtion- its a blog aint it? not a national newspaper to get my facts correct.

      But on a more serious note, i understand your contention that not all women who scream rape can be trusted....and its true that someone who doesn't complain the first time is just encouraging more such behavior in the future.....but a few bad women do not make the majority- just like how a few bad men cannot be held as models for all men.

      And finally, i agree wholeheartedly that the law is stupid and wrong when it trusts one persons version of events more than anothers- without verifying facts....and given the current media hysteria after the delhi rape- womens words are given more weightage than mens..but that doesnt mean the law is always wrong..most of the time it is the fault of the custodians of the law- the policemen who mess up the law....

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    2. Hello meen, I've been following your blog for almost 6 months now without leaving any comment so I decided to quickly say hi today, just so you know you've got a fan somewhere. LOL. Your blog makes sense to me just like http://danieluyi.com, another similarly interesting blog that I'm also a fan of.

      Keep it up.

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  2. Mr. Puttu, I totally agree with you post about the "in-the-news" issue.. but one thing.. alcohol intake lowers inhibition and makes one feel empowered to embark on actions which would normally not be acted upon... So, alcohol might have added to the circumstances but cannot be used (in this case) as a defense. Also, in the indian "trial-by-media", accused/suspect is branded guilty even before a trial... However damning the evidence, this is something which should be condemned and shunned..

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    1. you know ma'm i once heard someone say that "the best drunk is a sleeping drunk"....i agree alcohol lowers inhibitions but have you ever heard of anyone getting drunk and going and assaulting a police officer? i havent till now..the point i am trying to make here is even if alcohol gives you whats called dutch courage - it still leaves an individual clear enough to decide on which particular action to take in each situation...if he is totally drunk then he would be snoring in a corner woudnt he? not doing things which he normally would do...so i think blaming alcohol for every action is not justified...just my view- feel free to disagree.

      and as for your opinion on the media crusade- i agree wholeheartedly- the media does go overboard to filltheir slots 24/7- in fact my next post is precisely on that topic....and this lynching by screaming anchors doesnt achieve anything in the pursuit of justice.....

      finally, its always a pleasure to debate with someone intelligent enough to cross-question my assumptions....i love this...

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