Those 'crazy' people arrested in communist countries

As a kid growing up Cuban in the U.S., I remember hearing stories of how the Castro regime would call you "crazy" and throw you in jail.  It happened to 20-something Cubans who wanted to listen to The Beatles, for example, and to others who wanted to watch Western films like La Dolce Vita.  (For more on this, you may want to read Against All Hope by Armando Valladares.)

It's an old lefty trick: to shut down political debate by simply calling you crazy.

In fact, it happened in the USSR, too, as I saw last year in this article:


In 1963, Russian poet Joseph Brodsky was seized and sent to a mental institution.  At his trial the following year, authorities charged the 24-year-old with "social parasitism" and called him a "pseudo-poet in velveteen trousers."  He had failed to "fulfill his constitutional duty to work honestly for the good of the motherland."

"Who has recognized you as a poet?  Who has enrolled you in the ranks of poets?" asked the judge.

"No one," Brodsky replied.  "Who enrolled me in the ranks of the human race?"

Brodsky was committed to a mental institution for examination, where he spent three weeks.  Hospital workers pumped him with tranquilizers and repeatedly woke him during the night.  He was given cold baths and wrapped in wet canvas that shrank and cut his skin while drying.

Years later when Brodsky was being considered for exile, officials examined his mental health records.  They consulted leading Soviet psychiatrist Andrei Snezhnevsky, who, without personal examination, diagnosed Brodsky with "sluggishly progressing schizophrenia."  The poet was "not a valuable person at all and may be let go."

There is a lot more!

I am not suggesting that the Democrats want to create gulags.  I am simply saying it is playing with fire to have mental health professionals call someone "crazy" without ever seeing the patient or to have partisans talking about the 25th Amendment.

The "Hillary was robbed" story has gone from "she won the popular vote" to "the Russians did it" to now "Trump is crazy."

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