Date: 2012-04-17 02:01 am (UTC)
jadey: greyscale a woman's face (ani difranco) eyes upward  (Default)
From: [personal profile] jadey
Most competency legislation I'm familiar with (UK, US, Canada, past and present) do not map exactly onto psychiatric or colloquial definitions of "insanity" - they're based on particular standards (specific ones vary) which generally relate to something along the lines of capacity to understand court proceedings and own actions. Same thing with "insanity" (or not criminally responsible) appraisals, which usually focus on one's capacity to understand the nature of one's action and appreciate their gravity/wrongness to a reasonable degree. Otherwise, competency speaks to one's capacity to stand trial, not one's state of mind at the time of the offence, so they differ in that respect, but both differ considerably from what most of us might think of as "insanity". It does not surprise me that he is being tried - from his writings and actions, he seems quite clear-headed with a rationale thought process behind his actions, even though I believe both his premises and his conclusions are deeply flawed and his actions morally reprehensible. People not competent to stand trial (or eligible for "insanity"/NCR pleas) are generally people so out of touch with *any* reality (presently and/or at the time of commission) they can't effectively be communicated with (severe psychosis, dementia, etc.).
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