There is no more ubiquitous expression when it comes to mental healthcare than the phrase:
The Mental hospital is where you go to get help. Everyone knows that.
And that’s exactly what they do there, they help you, and they have been very successful with it.
But that phrase is so important and so useful, why should the mental health system have it alone.
After all, there is another system in America that might benefit from the phrase, one who is just as deserving and desperately needs the makeover. Whose aim is not to heal, (although they coincidentally do quite a bit of that) but perhaps less significant and less noble, still quite similar.
The Prison System.
Perhaps if we called it what it is, that would make the job of police officers and the prison staff that much easier. If prospective prisoners knew that the aim of a police officer was only to provide help and rehabilitate them, they might be more compliant with attempts to apprehend them.
And if prisoners themselves were more aware that the prison staff was only their to assist in their rehabilitation, perhaps then they would recognize the clear and dedicated efforts to help them, making them more docile and easier to care for.
The field of mental hygiene isn’t the only one skilled at rendering such involuntary help, and given the modern revolution in the science of rehabilitation, maybe its time we shared the expression a bit, and allowed the prison system to benefit from a more honest description of its practices, which truly only aim to help the subject.