The Insanity of the Temporary Insanity Defense Essay

2477 WordsDec 13, 200510 Pages
"Not Guilty, By reason of Insanity!" These words have stung the ears of many courtroom observers, especially the families and friends of victims whose lives were snuffed out by a so-called 'insane' assailant. While there are indeed many insane people running around the streets today, I feel that many persons who use the temporary insanity defense are more conniving than insane. Also, being an inexact science, the psychiatric community often offers up differing opinions as to any particular individual's sanity. Furthermore, money or lack thereof can play a major role in the success or failure of an insanity defense. The temporary insanity defense should therefore be abolished, especially for felony offenses such as murder. What…show more content…
Below are listed some of the defenses that have received a great deal of media attention over the past few years. First, 'Roid Rage' is characterized by severe mood swings related to steroid use. This defense lessened the sentence of 19 year-old Troy Gentzler, who admitted throwing rocks at cars on the highway injuring several people. Secondly, 'Black Rage' is defined at racial prejudice-induced insanity. Lawyers for Colin Ferguson, the black man who killed five white people and one Asian-American and wounded nineteen others on a Long Island railroad wanted to use this plea but Ferguson decided to mount his own defense. Next, there's 'Urban Survival Syndrome' which is described as the fear that inner-city black people have of other black people. A Fort Worth jury ended up deadlock in the case of 19 year-old Daimion Osby, a black man who shot two other unarmed black men in a parking lot. The so-called 'Meek-make Syndrome' is the psychological emasculation of the man by his spouse. By using this defense, a man in Los Angeles had the charge of murder reduced to voluntary manslaughter in the death-by-beating (with a wrench) of his wife. His lawyers claimed that she had destroyed his self-esteem by calling him names and forcing him to sleep on the floor. 'Fetal Trimethadione Syndrome', the result of a mother's use of epilepsy medication during pregnancy, was the defense offered by the lawyers of a 14 year-old boy who beat to death another 14 year-old boy. The

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