Source Pravda.Ru

New Jersey constitution calls mentally ill people 'idiots'

Most people would not call those with mental illnesses "idiots," but the New Jersey Constitution still does.

Senate President Richard J. Codey on Monday proposed removing the archaic language, inserted in 1844, through a constitutional amendment. The measure would have to be approved by both houses of the Legislature and by voters in November.

"This is yet another big step toward removing the stigma of mental illness," said Codey, who has been an advocate of the mentally ill since his wife suffered postpartum depression 22 years ago.

Codey wants to change a section of the state constitution that addresses who is eligible to vote, saying: "No idiot or insane person shall enjoy the right of suffrage."

The amendment would replace "idiot or insane person" with "person who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to lack the capacity to understand the act of voting."

Luke Koppisch, a coordinator with the New Jersey Developmental Disabilities Council, which brought the idea to Codey to sponsor, said the old language is insulting, the AP says.

"It harkens back to an era when people with disabilities were treated like second-class citizens," he said.

Six other state constitutions - Arkansas, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, New Mexico and Ohio - also contain the "idiots and insane" language pertaining to voting rights, according to the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law in Washington, D.C.

Comments
The Amazon and the New Conquistadores
Moving inexorably towards war
Capital outflow from Russia sets new records
US-led coalition strikes Assad's army in Syria
US-led coalition strikes Assad's army in Syria
US-led coalition strikes Assad's army in Syria
Moving inexorably towards war
USA plays to pretend a mighty dragon that can no longer breathe fire
Indian Origin of Egyptian Civilization
The difference between Polish and Ukrainian nationalism is plain to see
USA plays to pretend a mighty dragon that can no longer breathe fire
USA plays to pretend a mighty dragon that can no longer breathe fire
USA plays to pretend a mighty dragon that can no longer breathe fire
What weapons the USA, Russia and China may use in case of World War III
USA plays to pretend a mighty dragon that can no longer breathe fire
Sanctions do not stop foreign countries from buying Russia's S-400 systems
Mikhail Gorbachev shares his thoughts on nuclear war
Russia unveils nuclear-powered interstellar spaceship
Moving inexorably towards war
Russia close to recognising Donetsk and Luhansk republics after Donbass elections
Russia’s sanctions against Ukraine send message to Washington