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Should the State Support Insane Asylums?

In another great piece by William Leggett, he offers his view.


Evening Post,

November 28, 1834.

Title added by Sedgwick.

We have received a copy of a circular letter on the subject of a recommendation made by Governor Marcy to the Legislature, at its last session, that an Asylum for Insane Paupers should be erected, at the expense of the State. A select committee was charged with the subject, which reported favourably on the project; but the legislature adjourned without acting upon it. We trust they will adjourn again without acting affirmatively on any such scheme.

The taking care of the insane is no part of the business of the state government. The erecting of such an Asylum as is proposed, and the appointment of the various officers to superintend it, would be placing a good deal more power— where there is already too much—into the hands of the state executive, to be used honestly or corruptly, for good or evil, as these qualities should happen to predominate in his character, or as the temptations to use his official patronage for his own aggrandizement or profit might be strong or weak. We are continually suffering, under one pretence or other, these pilferings of power from the people.

The circular to which we have alluded appeals strongly to the sympathies of its readers. It presents a deplorable and harrowing picture of the miseries endured by insane paupers in the poor-houses of Massachusetts and New Hampshire, and intimates that their condition is no better in many counties of this state. If this is so, the evil ought to be investigated and remedied; but not in the method proposed, by the erection of a splendid state Asylum. The people ought not to suffer their judgment to be led away by their sympathies. They cannot be too jealous of the exercise of unnecessary powers by the state government. The nearer they keep all power to their own hands, and the more entirely under their own eyes, the more secure are they in their freedom and equal rights.


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Only if you put all the Keynesians in there.

I'd happily pay taxes for that.

I think it should be a church/community thing

With all the tax exempt status the churches enjoy- this is just the sort of outreach ministry Id like to see our tithes go toward.


This should be left to private enterprise. Even then, there is complete corruption and experimentation with Pharma. As recent as the 80's, state run hospitals were still performing "EST" (Electro Shock Therapy) using straight jackets and leather restraints for ankles and wrists. There are also psychological torture methods employed under the guise of "therapy". If you think these methods were strictly used on adults...think again...Most of these places have a juvenile ward and there's no distinction between a child of 14 and an adult of 44 years old.

Many in the system are put there indefinitely by the courts and kept there by doctors "evaluations", once again...indefinitely. Their rights stripped and held hostage by a system.

If you ever want to see a sad situation...visit a psyche ward...or take the time to watch "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest"...and you'll see a small part of what happens in these places.


Should there be insane asylums?

I have seen large scale state and private insane asylums and they are roughly similar in care. Mediaeval care that is ;) Big pharma has obviously huge input into this question.

I prefer the idea of rural farms such as before where the peoples can learn farming. I think that the localities should provide this service. I do not think this should fall under federal or state jurisdiction unless there is wrong doings in there.

Bottom line imo...insane asylums are going to probably violate peoples' rights whether private or public. ie. Like RP said, 'We are no longer a moral people'. Morality has to change before a better answer can come up with this issue.

Thanks for the question is was a real good one.


Should the State Support

Should the State Support Insane Asylums? No
Can the State Support Insane Asylums?
Yes,if the people therein choose to.Although private and charitable organizations would do a far superior job compared to a government which at best can only deal out death,thievery and destruction.

Should the Federal government support insane asylums? NO
Can the Federal government support insane asylums? NO

..."we are for a strong people." - William Leggett

Strong in mind,body and soul.That is what Americans should be,a free mind,a free body and a free soul.

Thanks for the article

13 No servant can serve two masters; for either he shall hate the one, and love the other, or else he shall lean to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and riches. - Luke 16

Strong people is the key.

Strong people is the key. When people value tyranny and immorality, freedom dies.

malo periculosam libertatem quam quietum servitium

I am an aristocrat. I love liberty; I hate equality. - John Randolph of Roanoke