My colleagues and I often care for patients suffering from hallucinations, prophesying, and claiming to speak with God, among other symptoms—in mental health care, it’s sometimes very difficult to tell apart religious belief from mental illness…. Our conclusions frequently stem from the behaviors we see before us. Take an example of a man who walks into an emergency department, mumbling incoherently. He says he’s hearing voices in his head, but insists there’s nothing wrong with him. He hasn’t used any drugs or alcohol. If he were to be evaluated by mental health professionals, there’s a good chance he might be diagnosed with a psychotic disorder like schizophrenia. But what if that same man were deeply religious? What if his incomprehensible language was speaking in tongues?
First, Mr Vavi is speaking the truth — corruption is real. Anyone denying it is living in a fool’s paradise. We are producing more scandals than our soccer team can score goals. Second, Mr Vavi is articulating thoughts and fears of the dejected electorate. Our partisan and docile Parliament cannot be trusted to defend democracy. One can’t help but think that P arliament’s duty is to protect the executive. In the absence of strong opposition parties, the likes of Mr Vavi are our prophets and voices of sanity. It is absurd for elected officials to live in opulence whilst the masses are trapped in poverty. Democracy cannot benefit the few and exclude the rest. – Dr Lucas Ntyintyane in a letter in Business DayBACK TO TOP