September 24, 2005

"An overly compliant personality."

The psychologist explains Lynndie England. Does that description make her seem any less responsible for her actions? I'd say being "overly compliant" is one of the character flaws, like having a hot temper, that might lead a person to commit a crime. Slapping "personality" onto it doesn't impress me.

22 comments:

Maria said...

In Atkins v. Virginia, one of the reasons the Supreme Court offered for its ruling that people who are mentally retarded are less culpable for their crimes is that in group settings they are more likely to be followers than leaders.

Ann Althouse said...

If a person is compliant because of very low intelligence, that's different. You can't demand that the person take more responsibility than they can. It's like the difference between a physically paralyzed person and a very lazy person on the occasion of a requirement to run.

Big Hal said...

It's sad that more people know who she is than know who Sgt. Leigh Ann Hester is. A coworker and I were talking about Lynndie a while back and she told me that thing that bugged her most was that when I told someone I was a veteran the first person that came to mind would not be Charles Greiner but, as soon as she told someone she had served, the person's first thought would be likely be Lynndie England.

Alcibiades said...

I still think it is an utter farce that Graner, who was the obvious ringleader, is likely to end up with less prison time than Lynndie.

Too Many Jims said...

Is it possible that "overly compliant" personalities are recruited more heavily by the military or that (at least at the lowest ranks) "overly compliant" behavior is encouraged.

Elizabeth said...

I wonder is she is retarded; I have little doubt that she's got a very low intelligence level. She deserves punishment for her crimes, but Graner is the ringleader and he's still controlling her fate. I don't understand the military's legal system, but what I gather from reports is that when she tried to plead guilty, he testified that she wasn't. The military system doesn't allow one to plead guilty just to escape a trial, so now she's having to have a trial. Graner is a sadist, and a control freak, and he's playing this system for his own pleasure. If he gets less time than England, that will be an injustice.

aidan maconachy said...

I agree. It's an attempt to absolve the individual of responsibility based upon predisposing factors over which she has no control supposedly - i.e. nature.

Not every mild mannered and "pliant" type becomes a candidate for svengali-like ministrations, leading to murder because "damn, I just couldn't help myself". Karla Homolka is an example of the passive-aggressive games some "impressionable" women play and more often than not they are much less a pawn of other's designs than they would like you to believe.

More excuses, more avoidance of the fundamental and essential truth that (presuming sanity and a lack of overt coercion)in the end we are responsible for own actions - period.

Jacques Cuze said...

Does being "overly compliant" lead to crime, or make it that much easier to be led to crime my fine rethuglican meme-repeater?

Ann Althouse said...

Uh, quxxo, you're defending Lynndie England! Better get your troll act together!

lindsey said...

"I wonder is she is retarded; I have little doubt that she's got a very low intelligence level."

I've been told by more than a few people over the years that the military uses an IQ test and if you can't pass you can't get in. They claimed that the military ends up rejecting more people than enter. If she is retarded, I have to wonder how low that IQ test is.

Ann Althouse said...

Lindsey: Judging from this description, I think all sorts of mental deficiencies short of retardation are disqualifiers, including the sort of pathology the psychologist was testifying about.

Jacques Cuze said...

Yes, I am defending Lynndie England, not from her actions, but from being scapegoated.

And my fine Rethuglican torture defender, how will you swift-boat Capt. Ian Patrick, who has revealed that the 82nd Airborne has been involved in abuse and torture at the same time as Abu Graib, and all in the name of fun and boredom?

Yes, my fine Rethuglican-destroyer-of-America-in-the-name-of-politics-is-aok, I will defend England from scapegoating and continue to call for Dumsfeld, and Chimp to resign over destroying our military.

Oh, I'm all troll? You would have been one of Rotten George's minions calling the authors of the Federalist Papers Trolls. My fine rethuglican defamer liberty, you should be defending trolls, not narcing on them.

Condoleesa said...

Ann, are you my long lost twin? I haven't read anything you have written that I didn't 100% agree with.

Ann Althouse said...

Condoleesa: Thanks for joining the comments!

Robert said...

Ann, don't put up with people like that. (Well, it's your blog; you can do what you want.) If someone cannot formulate a disagreement without including a personal insult, then the odds are very good that they have nothing to contribute to the discussion.

OddD said...

Does anyone else notice a sort of Homeric quality to quxxo's posts? Only instead of "white-armed Hera" and "rosy-fingered Dawn" he has "my fine rethuglican".

Perhaps he's preparing for a live recital.

Ann Althouse said...

Robert: Some things left up hurt the commenter more than deleting them, though the commenter may not notice.

Jacques Cuze said...

Ann, that is exactly why I like it when conservative rethuglican law professors create blahgs and I do congratulate you for having bigger b___s than conservative rethuglican law professor Reynolds, and being brave enough to have comments enabled. Most conservative blahgers are way too chicken(hawks).

XWL said...

I generally have suspicions about experts involved in court proceedings as I find many have an axe to grind and are chosen by defense or prosecution for the reliability of their findings.

I don't think Dr. Xavier Amador is any different. His bailiwick is that part of schizophrenia is that crazy people refuse to believe they are crazy, or to use the term suffer from Anosognosia.

He was an expert witness at the Unabomber trial and the 20th Highjacker hearings, in both cases brought in to explain why they would, despite their intelligence, refuse legal counsel, his explanation, both were paranoid schizophrenics, and their illness prevents them from realizing that they are crazy.

So now we have Lynndie England, and guess what, Dr. Amador finds that she is disordered, so shouldn't be held accountable for her actions.

If you are paid to find someone crazy, then how hard is it to find that someone is crazy, especially when part of your pet theory is that protestations of sanity are used as proof of insanity?

Daryl Herbert said...

in the end we are responsible for own actions - period.

We should tell everyone the truth: namely that they're just meat-machines with flawed programming and anyone too dysfunctional will end up: 1) with a social security check 2) in prison or 3) dead.

Nobody is "responsible" for their actions in the sense of being allowed to choose them, but we're all responsible in the sense of incurring punishment for them.

Murky Thoughts said...

I'm with Daryl. Amen to that. American law is totally incoherent with regard to why and who we punish. You don't like Lindy? Lucky you, because surely she's going down. And probably it's prudent public policy that "people such as her" go down. But who knows what she or anyone "deserves?"

Maria said...

"It's like the difference between a physically paralyzed person and a very lazy person on the occasion of a requirement to run."

But surely most people fall somewhere in between these two extremes. What if she was repeatedly told as a child that she would never succeed as a runner?