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What do you think? Let's talk about liberty.
« on: August 20, 2020, 01:52:12 am »
There's this terrific writing I found from the Internet . . . it's a real court case. This fella had disability (Down's syndrome and cerebral palsy) so he couldn't do anything without the help of other people. Before he reached certain age, his mother did the role. After his mother became too  unwell to continue with the role, however, he was left with state-provided facility, where his every move was closely monitored by staffs in the facility and when he behaved a little violently, he was controlled by the staffs. Whilst the state argued the paternal role for the fella - monitoring and controlling - was for good purpose, the court thought differently.

Lady Hale (of UK) gave the superb opinion :

In my view, it is axiomatic that people with disabilities, both mental and physical, have the same human rights as the rest of the human race. It may be that those rights have sometimes to be limited or restricted because of their disabilities, but the starting point should be the same as that for everyone else. This flows inexorably from the universal character of human rights, founded on the inherent dignity of all human beings, and is confirmed in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Far from disability entitling the state to deny such people human rights: rather it places upon the state (and upon others) the duty to make reasonable accommodation to cater for the special needs of those with disabilities. 
Those rights include the right to physical liberty, which is guaranteed by article 5 of the European Convention. This is not a right to do or to go where one pleases. It is a more focussed right, not to be deprived of that physical liberty. But, as it seems to me, what it means to be deprived of liberty must be the same for everyone, whether or not they have physical or mental disabilities. If it would be a deprivation of my liberty to be obliged to live in a particular place, subject to constant monitoring and control, only allowed out with close supervision, and unable to move away without permission even if such an opportunity became available, then it must also be a deprivation of the liberty of a disabled person. The fact that my living arrangements are comfortable, and indeed make my life as enjoyable as it could possibly be, should make no difference. A gilded cage is still a cage.

... Thus, they suggest, the personís compliance or lack of objection is not relevant; the relative normality of the placement (whatever the comparison made) is not relevant; and the reason or purpose behind a particular placement is also not relevant. For the reasons given above, I agree with that approach.

I added the bold font.

And the fella won the case. It was his physical liberty of "free to leave", that was the focus of the court. Liberty should not mean everyone has the right to freely do everything. Any sovereign state should be able to stop a foreigner they think is not fit for their country from coming in, for example. But when your basic right to "move" is strictly restrained up to a point that you don't feel free to do what is necessary for your existence, that might constitute a deprivation of liberty. "Free to leave" can include not just your physical ability to move. What if you know you are constantly monitored by those staffs, inside with the surveillance cameras, outside with constant following, would you feel free to leave? This might make you really uncomfortable, so you won't be able to do whatever you want to do because of the "chilling effect". So after all, you might not want to move to anywhere whatsoever because you don't want to have following staffs everywhere you go.

What if, those staffs are only humans so they can't always act in your best interest, which is often the case? Moreover, there can be real psychopath who can't behave themselves without supervision. Some horrible people tease mentally disabled people when they know there's no supervision (which is why it is strictly prohibited by law to have supervision to provide care for elderly people or disabled people). And what if, in the worst case, they publish what they observe about the people they give care because they can legally follow  their every move? Then those who are being cared won't be that cared or protected, and they might have to worry about how their other everyday mundane activity is not being used by money-hungry psychopaths.

Who was benefited in the movie The Truman Show? Truman? It was the TV producer who made that show who was benefited from it.