Monday, April 16, 2012

Would an insane person be able to identify their state of mind?

When I used to talk to my younger sister about alcohol, I would tell her that once a person is drunk they wouldn't have to say it. I told her that whoever drinks, turns to you and says 'I'm so drunk' is not drunk at all.  My understanding of being drunk is that a person would have to be so overwhelmed by alcohol, in other words containing a considerably large amount of alcohol in their system, that they themselves wouldn't even know the time they got drunk.  In terms of insanity I have the same type of reasoning.

I believe that a person who is insane is completely unaware of the fact. A person who looks you dead in the eye and tells you 'I am mad', is just a confused person. In my opinion, once a person is actually insane, they will do things which in society are viewed as abnormal, and look at them as a completely normal things. There are of course many areas in which deciding whether a person is insane or not becomes a hard task, with consideration for the different forms of insanity in existence.

In relation to the killings on 22. July 2011, which took place in Oslo, Norway  - a televised trial involving the culprit himself could be followed across Norway and other parts of the world, today. While watching, it truly amazed me how a man could have killed so many people (77 in all), and yet show no signs of remorse or even sadness for what he had done. He had been depicted entering the courtroom at ease, and even smiling. One thing that baffled me even further, and perhaps not only me, was that he only showed signs of emotion by crying once the court showed footage of his so called '2083 KT' manifesto.   Of course the man could be deemed insane because of the fact that he  could have killed so many, and on top of that show no remorse whatsoever. Nevertheless, another could argue that he is not insane, given the fact that he was able to carefully plan his killings - and over several years at that.

My father, who majored in psychiatry, told me that the judicial court is contemplating on whether or not the murderer has Schizophrenia, on which my father commented would be impossible - as a person with schizophrenia would not be able to carefully plan such a deed.

Following the court case I started doubting my own 'diagnosis'/judgement of this man. In his eyes, the same determination Hitler had had several years ago, could be recognised. Hitler could of course have been labelled insane with his obsession for the Aryan race (blue eyed, blond haired people), but could also be viewed as one of the most intelligent men ever to have walked the face of the earth - with regards to his success of brainwashing so many people during his 'reign'.

I believe that any person is capable of killing - sane or insane. However, the only thing stopping most people from committing murder (or other types of criminal activities) is their conscience and their ability to reason. My conclusion is therefore that a person does not have to be insane to commit murder, but a person must usually be an expert to be able to discern (potential) killers from the masses.