How do you believe society should address the mentally challenged that require assisted living or institutional care?

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This is a very difficult topic because it touches on two issues that are very much “sore spots” in today’s political world. 

First, there is the issue of individual rights versus the government’s ability to force people to do things.  Many people feel that the government has been too intrusive in people’s lives.  Giving the government the power to force people to enter institutions might be seen by many as a terrible intrusion on individual rights.

Second, there is the issue of government spending.  We are trying very hard to cut government spending today and more services for the mentally ill would be very expensive.  People who are mentally ill or mentally challenged need a great deal of care and high quality care would be very expensive.

Thus, it is very hard to say.  Ideally, those who are identified as needing institutional care would be given that care by the government.  However, there are real issues about paying for that care and about forcing people to take that care if they do not want it. 

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