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Living with Schizoaffective Disorder

Setting Priorities

My much-older and I must confess far-wiser mentor advised me:
"... unless you can focus your limited energy productively..."

That I am been left dumbstruck at the multitudes of ignorant responses to my announcement of quite a simple and sensible act of self-preservation leads me to assert that the very most productive way I can focus my limited energy is to work towards both deepening and broadening the public's insight into the nature of mental illness - not just my own, but that of others as well.

Surely you will agree after reading of the following:

Not long after I moved to Vancouver in 2012, the City Of Portland lost a wrongful death lawsuit for two million dollars after two Portland Police Bureau officers murdered a completely innocent Schizophrenic man by repeatedly shooting him in the back with their nine-millimetre semi-automatic service pistols.

That pair of Portland's Finest is still on the force.

A couple years after, two other PPB officers brutally murdered a homeless Schizophrenic man by beating him to death for no apparent reason.

Those two of Our Men In Blue remain on the force as well.

That this poor soul had long ago lost touch with his family meant that no one who had standing was aware of his murder. In lieu of that, the Federal Department of Justice filed a Civil Rights complaint, with the eventual settlement being that a large team of PPB officers would be given rigorous training on such topics as the nature of mental illness, crisis counseling and conflict de-escalation.

Kelly Thomas 1974 - 2011, Requiescat In Pace

Kelly Thomas 1974 - 2011
Requiescat In Pace

While the PPB has yet to fully comply with that settlement, to their credit some of their force has received the required training, as a result of which they've managed not to kill any more of us madmen.

On July 5, 2011, six Fullerton California police officers beat to death a Schizophrenic homeless man by the name of Kelly Thomas. Stricken with terror because he knew he was dying, that completely innocent man desperately begged his father to save his very life.

Charges were pressed against three of his murderers with two of them being found innocent; the District Attorney then declined to pursue the case against the third.

It happens that the medical staff of most of America's County Jails are contractors and not employees of the Sheriff's Department. That Vancouver's Clark County Jail's medical contractor is far too cheap to purchase my Happy Pills from local pharmacies, every time I get arrested I am forced to wait fully ten days before I can Get Happy.

One of my times in the slammer - I've long ago forgot what I was actually charged with - I resolved to take my own life through a method that I once saw quite vividly portrayed on television:

I climbed onto my cell's top bunk then bound my hands behind me with my towel. My plan was to stand up then dive head-first onto the concrete floor. If that didn't succeed in killing me it would without a doubt have left me confined to a wheelchair.

That I am still alive is the simple dumb luck that I was caught red-handed tying my hands behind my back by a Custody Division Deputy as he made his regular rounds - these rounds carried out for the specific purpose of somehow keeping a lid on the quite grim statistic that out of all suicide attempts in general, the greatest portion of successful suicide completions take place in County Jails.

Long before my Happy Pills arrived from a discount mail-order pharmacy in Rhode Island - just look at a map! Rhode Island is quite a long ways from Washington - a judge ordered me to Western State Hospital in Lakewood Washington for a Mental Competency Evaluation.

At a cost to the Washington State Taxpayer of well over ten thousand dollars, I was in Western State's Forensic Unit for twenty-eight days. Immediately upon my return to the Vancouver Slammer, my case was dismissed.

The medical contractor for the Multnomah County Detention Center in Portland does that same thing: No Happy Pills For Mikey because it takes ten solid days for them to arrive from Rhode Island.

Somewhere around day six I saw The Thought Police for the very first time in four years: through a glass window that was covered by a closed Venetian blind, I saw a patrol car parked in the next room with its blue lights flashing.

You Do Not Want Me To See The Thought Police:

That case - in Multnomah, County Oregon - was dismissed as well, but to get to that dismissal, I had to cool my heels in the slammer for sixty solid days, then turn up for frequent preliminary hearings for a year and a half until my prosecutor moved for dismissal just one hearing before my actual jury trial.

I know full well The Thought Police aren't real but that does not help.

Not. One. Bit.

The Thought Police are a completely silent, purely visual hallucination not of actual officers but of their vehicles - always with blue lights flashing for some reason, never red.

The Thought Police aren't coming to arrest me.

No.

The Thought Police never arrest anyone.

The Thought Police are coming to kill me.

That "Deepest Fear" of mine is not of The Thought Police themselves, but my fear that I will someday lose the insight that has so far enabled me to discern the difference between The Thought Police and the real police.

If I should ever lose that incredibly precious insight of mine, then should I be approached in any way for any reason by a real live human police officer, I know very well that I will snatch his service pistol from his holster, shoot him dead then shoot down as well a few of his colleagues who quite quickly turn up so as to dampen my enthusiasm.

If through some manner of Heaven-Sent miracle, our nation's Sheriffs could quite clearly specify in their contracts with their medical vendors that every inmate must get his or her prescribed medicines within at most eight hours of their being booked, then not just myself but a great many other Schizophrenic and Schizoaffective Accused But Presumed Innocents won't see any Thought Police at all.

Puzzling, don't you think, that no one other than I has figured out that a vast quantity of taxpayer money could be saved, were those medical contractors simply to pick up just a ten-day supply of our Happy Pills from local pharmacies?

Surely not so much the great savings in money, but the great savings in Human Lives that would result from a deeper and broader insight into the nature of mental illness is far, far more important than a macOS USB Function Driver?

Your Rebellious Student,

Michael David Crawford

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