Two accused insurrectionists are blaming their mental illnesses as a defense for trying to overthrow the government.
At least two defendants charged for the January 6 Capitol riot have now been granted mental competency evaluations – but experts say existing case law may not help them if they have no history of mental illness.
Jacob Chansley’s painted, horned-covered face is one of the lasting images of the siege. On Friday, nearly four months to the day after his initial court appearance, the defense attorney for the “QAnon Shaman,” asked a judge for a psychological examination of his client.
Nearly one in five US adults is reported to have a mental illness, which means that tens of millions of Americans who have been diagnosed with a mental illness did not try to attack the Capitol and overthrow the United States government to keep Donald Trump in power.
Lots of mentally ill people do not commit crimes, and the defense of blaming a mental illness in what appears to be a gambit to avoid prison is an insult to all of the people who don’t break the law and are valued members of society.
The defenses presented by insurrectionists range from blaming Donald Trump to blaming Fox News. What is missing is personal accountability.
Those who attacked the Capitol must be punished, and if they are falsely hiding behind claims of mental illness, they deserve whatever justice is handed down.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor, who is White House Press Pool, and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association