Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Psychotherapists being blamed

I have been following the Jodi Arias trial on TV (TruTV and HLN). The prosecution psychologist expert took the position that the defense experts empathized with Jodi Arias, and therefore crossed the line between evaluation and therapy, and showed bias. It is funny to see a psychologist blame other psychotherapists for having too much empathy.

The prosecution expert Janeen DeMarte testified that Arias has a borderline personality disorder, based on a MMPI computer-scored true-false test, and some observations about inappropriate jailhouse behavior. I had to take this test for one of my child custody trials.

The typical juror may just conclude that psychology experts can be bought, and paid to say whatever the lawyers want her to say.

Usually a criminal defendant would not be subject to prosecutor expert psychobabble about how she has a criminal mental profile. But the defense has put forth testimony that she does not, so the prosecution can rebut it. Another except is where a man is accused of domestic violence, as California has a special law saying that the prosecution can present an expert saying that the man matches the profile of a domestic abuser even if his girlfriend denies it.

Meanwhile, leftist Democrats are on a campaign to destroy parental rights, and limit free speech thru the regulation of teachers and psychotherapists.

The San Jose California newspaper reports:
"Parents can teach their children whatever they want," said Guay, now 41, a pastor's son who lived 20 years in San Francisco until moving recently to West Hollywood. "What they don't have a right to is knowingly or unknowingly using the guise of psychotherapy to damage their children."

On Wednesday, a federal appeals court will review whether California's attempt to ban the practice on minors trampled on the rights of families to seek such counseling -- and also whether it improperly threatens professional therapists who risk the loss of licenses and livelihoods if they violate the law.

A group of therapists and parents challenged the law in January, arguing it interferes with religious practices and violates free speech rights by barring gay conversion discussions between young patients and their counselors.

The case has produced a legal standoff between a state's power to regulate what it considers harmful conduct by licensed professionals and supporters of the therapy who insist parents have a right to follow their beliefs in arranging such therapy for their children.

Two Sacramento federal judges have split over the issue, one upholding the law and the other finding it runs afoul of the First Amendment. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals put the law on hold while the case proceeds.

The showdown is being closely watched as other states, including New Jersey and Massachusetts, move to enact similar laws. Legal experts say the case poses tough questions because the U.S. Supreme Court has not established much precedent on a state's ability to impose such restrictions on the speech of licensed professionals.

"It hasn't really told us to what extent restrictions are constitutional," said Eugene Volokh, a UCLA law professor. "This is not clear."
Most psychotherapy is damaging to children. If psychotherapists were banned from doing anything damaging, then most of them would be out of business. California passed a law banning one type of psychotherapy, but there is no scientific paper saying that it is any more harmful than any other psychotherapy.


Anonymous said...

When you say, "California has a special law saying that the prosecution can present an expert saying that the man matches the profile of a domestic abuser even if his girlfriend denies it", I think you're misinterpreting Evidence Code section 1107:

1107. (a) In a criminal action, expert testimony is admissible by either the prosecution or the defense regarding intimate partner battering and its effects, including the nature and effect of physical, emotional, or mental abuse on the beliefs, perceptions, or behavior of victims of domestic violence, except when offered against a criminal defendant to prove the occurrence of the act or acts of abuse which form the basis of the criminal charge.

The italicized portions are saying the expert can explain why a victim might recant, producing inconsistent testimony (for example, a victim initially calls police, but later claims to have walked into a door). But they're not saying the expert can give evidence proving that there was in fact an act of abuse.

George said...

The legislature apparently intended that exception, but the Calif. Supreme Court ruled in People v Brown (2004) that the battered women's syndrome testimony is allowed anyway. See my post on it.

Anonymous said...

I quoted Evidence Code section 1107 from that post of yours which goes on to say, "Such evidence can be admitted, the court held, because the judge could use it in evaluating the credibility of a victim's courtroom testimony. A domestic violence counselor testified that 80 percent to 85 percent of battered women recant their testimony before or at trial." That's consistent with what I wrote before -- the expert can explain why a victim might have recanted. It doesn't mean "the man matches the profile of a domestic abuser" so therefore he's guilty.

The California Supreme Court did rule that such expert testimony could be admitted even if there was no prior evidence of abuse. That still doesn't mean it can be used against someone to say they match a profile.

George said...

If the rules of evidence were strictly followed, then I think that you would be correct. But LaViolette has testified in many California cases, and in the Arias trial she described herself as being like an FBI profiler. I infer from this that she has been testifying against men just because they meet the profile of an abuser, just as she claims that Travis was an abuser.

Anonymous said...

Arianna Pattek, a racist, man-hating feminist bitch

In the above link, you will find evidence of her committing the CRIME of discrimination based on a man's race.

I have included her personal email, the email of her academic advisor, link to her Facebook account, link to her two blogs, and her pictures as well.

I suggest you men write to her through her email, Facebook, and blogs, and tell her that you are reporting her for the CRIME of discrimination against men.

American women are really evil bitches.