I'm going to do a little historical research. I'd like to know if the Italians were every oppressed or subjugated so I'll have something to fall back on should I ever be arrested for a violent crime.
You laugh, but you shouldn't. After all, Isaac Cortez Bynum is trying something similar. He beat his son to death. Abused him to death, actually. And his attorney claims it is due to post traumatic slave syndrome.
[Attorney Randall] Vogt says he will argue -- "in a general way" -- that masters beat slaves, so Bynum was justified in beating his son.
bq. The slave theory is the work of Joy DeGruy-Leary, an assistant professor in the Portland State University Graduate School of Social Work. It is not listed by psychiatrists or the courts as an accepted disorder, and some experts said they had never heard of it.
So, let's all delve into our history and see if we can't blame our bad behavior on anyone but ourselves. Yes, I know the courts will never let this argument stand, but it's the fact that someone is trying to pass this off as a legitimate defense that boggles the mind. How can an attorney stand before a judge and, with a straight face, basically say that his client is not guilty of beating a child to death because many, many years ago his ancestors were beaten, and even though he wasn't there to see it and even though he was never a slave or never had a master himself, this has somehow affected him so deeply that he saw his two year old son as a slave and himself as the master and yes, your honor, my client was destined to beat his child to death.
I wonder, as an Italian, what faults of mine are inherent, then. What or who can I blame my shortcomings as a person on? Should I ever land in front of a judge, is there anything in my ancestors' past that I could use as a crutch to diguise my violent crime as something else?
I'm sure I can blame something on Mussolini. Or maybe Nero. Perhaps I can work a Post Traumatic Fiddling Disorder into my next therapy appointment. Just think of how easy it will be to not take responsibility for my own actions when I can start blaming people who existed before I was even a twinkle in my mother's eyes.
The more I read about people like Joy DeGruy-Leary, the less hope I have for the future of this country and the world at large. The more crackpot theories and blame-everyone-else defenses that pop up in the U.S. courts, the less I think humanity will survive this century. This goes right alongside McDonald's Made Me Fat and Judas Priest Made Me Kill My Dog headlines.
This is the Age of No Responsibility. For every action you take, there is a person to blame when that action goes wrong. For every ounce you gain, every crime you commit, every coffee you spill, there is a an attorney willing to help you point your finger in every direction but back at yourself. I thought the fat and coffee lawsuits were bad enough, but now that we have people willing to go that extra litigious mile to set child murderers free, I am officially giving up all hope for mankind.
Nero fiddled while Rome burned. I'm sure there's something in there for me.