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(CBC)   Man repeatedly confronted by police for public drunkenness. Problem: It's actually Huntington's disease   (cbc.ca) divider line 68
    More: Asinine, public intoxication, false accusations, problems  
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5974 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Jan 2014 at 10:09 PM (35 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-01-14 09:23:47 PM
I wouldn't wish that disease on a mortal enemy.  Sorry for your condition, dude.
 
2014-01-14 09:27:09 PM
www.portable-essentials.com
/Just sayin'...
//couldn't hurt, anyway
 
2014-01-14 09:29:23 PM
The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


MaudlinMutantMollusk: [www.portable-essentials.com image 768x559]
/Just sayin'...
//couldn't hurt, anyway


Yeah, somehow I doubt the cops would believe it anyway.
 
2014-01-14 09:44:48 PM

fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


MaudlinMutantMollusk: [www.portable-essentials.com image 768x559]
/Just sayin'...
//couldn't hurt, anyway

Yeah, somehow I doubt the cops would believe it anyway.


I think you have to register and provide medical proof, and you also get an ID card that describes your condition
 /I could be wrong

//still couldn't hurt
///you're probably right
 
2014-01-14 10:10:59 PM
I want to find out if I have this disease. If only I could sober up long enough.
 
2014-01-14 10:12:47 PM
This sounds horrifying man, my deepest sympathies.

My only advice would be to move to Las Vegas.... there you will be worshipped.
 
2014-01-14 10:14:03 PM
cops have killed for less than this, watch your back dude.
 
2014-01-14 10:19:26 PM
There was a story on This American Life last year that talked about a man that ended up in jail for murder and all the time he had Huntington's.  There was a CBC podcast, White Coat Black Art, that followed a Huntington's sufferer until he decided, with his wife's knowledge, to take his own life.  Huntington's disease is evil.
 
2014-01-14 10:24:30 PM
i1.bebo.com

/yes I know that's Parkinson's
 
2014-01-14 10:25:32 PM

Trafficguy2000: cops have killed for less than this, watch your back dude.


ya, came here to say...lucky he aint dead yet.

img.ibtimes.com
just ask this dude...oh, wait...he dead.
 
2014-01-14 10:28:10 PM
A cop will kill him.
 
2014-01-14 10:28:40 PM
Canadian police escort you home?  Nice.  It seems even the cops up there are nicer than in the US, even when they are being dicks.
 
2014-01-14 10:32:54 PM
1.bp.blogspot.com
 
2014-01-14 10:33:18 PM
This might be one of the rare times a forehead tattoo might actually be a good idea. Something to the effect of "I'm NOT drunk! I have Huntington's disease." It's simple, direct, impossible to miss, and would immediately set the tone for any police encounter. Or really any awkward social encounter. I would go this route over any sort of just constantly carried I.D. because you just know dude would get shot trying to pull it out when some Barney Fife thinks he's going for a weapon.

That's a rough road in life, man. Much love.
 
2014-01-14 10:33:27 PM
So, given that we are reading this, at all, he acts like a sloppy emotional drunk. That's the worst kind.
 
2014-01-14 10:33:35 PM
Awkwaaaaard
 
2014-01-14 10:35:36 PM

fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


Not right to arrest him, not that would stop the cops, though.  I wonder what it would take to get the cops to get a little training in critical thinking, but that would mean they would have to hire capable thinkers to begin with.

At least it doesn't sound likes he drives, so he isn't putting anyone in danger.  He could put some of it in perspective, he did get a free ride home.
 
2014-01-14 10:38:54 PM
A little turrets added in would enhance the potential comedy.

/dnrtfa
 
2014-01-14 10:39:13 PM
The simple fact is, you walk like a duck. It must suck ass to have this disease but you must realize the position it puts other people in who have absolutely no way of knowing otherise. Exceptions are not the rule because, well, they're exceptions.
 
2014-01-14 10:44:48 PM
How big is the town?  Is it possible for him to meet with the officers during a morning/afternoon roll call and explain the condition, so they all know him and what it's about?

I feel bad for both "sides" in this one.  The cops are just trying to do their job, and you can't just ignore someone who appears drunk because it might actually be a disease.  You still have to check it out.  And it's a rare enough disease that you can't entirely expect cops to be familiar with it.  And again, even if they are, they still have to investigate.

Of course, it's absolutely horribly and stigmatizing for the person with the disease.  He's got enough to deal with, without having to go through this every time he sets foot outside.  Mortifying.  Would make me want to become a recluse too.  Or scream at the officers after the 15th time.

Sounds like there needs to be a meeting of the minds.
 
2014-01-14 10:46:04 PM
We had a guy with Huntingtons that would get our ambulance called out all the time because he would have violent outbursts with his family.  Family would call the police, because they couldn't handle him during these outbursts, and of course they would immediately call us.  As he was one of our frequent fliers, we kind of all knew him and how to handle him.  But that's only because we knew him.

The disorder really can present like someone altered on something.  Angry, confused, uncoordinated, and how many other symptoms that, at first blush, would very much look like they were on something.  And when you realize that 90% of the time, police and EMS that see this kind of thing happening are looking at someone who is on something, you can understand why they would make that assumption...

lack of warmth: Not right to arrest him, not that would stop the cops, though.  I wonder what it would take to get the cops to get a little training in critical thinking, but that would mean they would have to hire capable thinkers to begin with.


...I've been wrong before, however.
 
2014-01-14 10:47:51 PM
I had a teacher in high school that told us there was once a parent who they thought was always coming to school drunk to pick up her kid.  I guess they were concerned enough that they considered calling child protective services until someone told them she had Huntingtons.  Glad that didn't go that far, but man that must suck for people who have it (for many reasons obviously).  It's definitely on the list of worst diseases/disorders you can get.  I wouldn't say it's number one, but it's close.
 
2014-01-14 10:48:30 PM

fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


It's different because Huntington's isn't voluntary.  It's not like he decided to go to the neighborhood bar and get plastered with Huntington's.

While he should avoid more complicated things like driving, I wouldn't go as far to say he shouldn't be allowed to appear in public at all.
 
2014-01-14 10:50:03 PM

brimed03: How big is the town?  Is it possible for him to meet with the officers during a morning/afternoon roll call and explain the condition, so they all know him and what it's about?

I feel bad for both "sides" in this one.  The cops are just trying to do their job, and you can't just ignore someone who appears drunk because it might actually be a disease.  You still have to check it out.  And it's a rare enough disease that you can't entirely expect cops to be familiar with it.  And again, even if they are, they still have to investigate.

Of course, it's absolutely horribly and stigmatizing for the person with the disease.  He's got enough to deal with, without having to go through this every time he sets foot outside.  Mortifying.  Would make me want to become a recluse too.  Or scream at the officers after the 15th time.


Sounds like there needs to be a meeting of the minds.

I dunno. The guy with the neurodegenerative disease might have an unfair advantage over the average cop.
 
2014-01-14 10:55:41 PM
So... how often in this town with 11 police officers dies this happen? I'm one of fifty in a town of 30,000. I know every "regular" by their first name and their drug of choice and most of their specific mental disorders. After the first encounter with this guy and email would get sent out and the whole department would know his issue and whether he needed or expected any help from us when out and about. For those of you who wouldn't accept that the cops would ever do anything for altruistic motives or, you know, a desire to to a good job, you can chalk it up to laziness. I'd much rather tell my dispatcher "oh, that's Bob, he's fine, I'm not gonna respond" when some passerby calls him in as drunk.
 
2014-01-14 10:57:13 PM

upndn: A little turrets added in would enhance the potential comedy.

/dnrtfa


With lasers or flamethrowers?
 
2014-01-14 11:06:45 PM

fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


MaudlinMutantMollusk: [www.portable-essentials.com image 768x559]
/Just sayin'...
//couldn't hurt, anyway

Yeah, somehow I doubt the cops would believe it anyway.


It's different in that it's a completely different thing, and not illegal? How hard is that to understand? There is no law against being in public with impaired motor skills and cognition. There ARE laws against being drunk in public (although there shouldn't be, really...I don't see how it's an issue unless you're being a nuisance, in which case disorderly conduct ought to cover it).
 
2014-01-14 11:08:52 PM
I had a cousin who died at the absurdly young age of 24 from Huntington's. I will never be able to forget how she moved and spoke during her last year of mobility. It was deeply upsetting, to say the least.

There are only eleven cops. They must all know that there is a man, who appears to be drunk, who repeatedly tells them that he has Huntington's. Either they don't believe him and think he is just a very consistent liar, or they don't understand what Huntington's is, and that this man is going to slowly turn into a vegetable and be aware that he is slowly turning into a vegetable.

I cannot express how much hatred I am feeling right now towards these cops. I need a drink or five.
 
2014-01-14 11:16:00 PM
Feels his pain.

i28.photobucket.com
 
2014-01-14 11:25:44 PM
Not making this story about me... but...

My great-grandmother, grandfather, father, and aunt all died of Huntington's. My sister has it. My cousin is at risk and does not know if she has it or not. I've been tested and do not have it...

It destroyed an entire half of my family- it was the worst for my grandmother, she had to see her husband (my grandfather) and her 2 children (my father and my aunt) die of it. She died a very depressed and angry woman...

It's a horrible, horrible disease. And it's especially cruel because unless you get tested you start showing symptoms at an age where you've likely had children and now they have a 50/50 risk of inheriting it... And if you get tested and you have it there is really nothing that can be done to delay symptoms or treat it...

I feel like I won the lottery when I tested negative... although I did have a few years of survivor guilt...

My sister and I are not close but when our father was sick and before she had symptoms she would get him from the nursing home on weekends and take him home. Sometimes she'd take him out for pizza or ice cream... Little kids would be scared and she would explain that he was sick and was not scary... When some teenage punk or young adult would make a comment or laugh she would go ballistic and the cops had to come out several times to break it up... I'll always give her credit for that.

Long story short- the cops should learn about this disease and know his situation- it's rare enough that there can't be a lot of people in town with it, he's probably the only one. And they should do what they can to let him live as normal a life as he can for as long as he can....
 
2014-01-14 11:28:36 PM

brimed03: How big is the town?


Tiny. Like abysmally tiny.  The bus station is a convenience store.  There are three major industries in Spring hill, a prison, nursing homes and the Anne Murray museum.  It's an old coal mining town that no longer has a mine.  I heard this man on the radio this afternoon and he seemed like he could converse rather well despite the slurring speech.  He only sounded drunk if you were not actually listening to what he was saying and only heard the sound of his voice.  He actually went to the police station when he moved to town to tell them specifically about his condition because this is a common problem for people with Huntingtons. Apparently that just triggered their bully instincts to pick on the most vulnerable people they can.
 
2014-01-14 11:30:37 PM

Whazzits: I had a cousin who died at the absurdly young age of 24 from Huntington's. I will never be able to forget how she moved and spoke during her last year of mobility. It was deeply upsetting, to say the least.

There are only eleven cops. They must all know that there is a man, who appears to be drunk, who repeatedly tells them that he has Huntington's. Either they don't believe him and think he is just a very consistent liar, or they don't understand what Huntington's is, and that this man is going to slowly turn into a vegetable and be aware that he is slowly turning into a vegetable.

I cannot express how much hatred I am feeling right now towards these cops. I need a drink or five.



Have 5 for me as well...
 
2014-01-14 11:36:35 PM

Mnemia: fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?


MaudlinMutantMollusk: [www.portable-essentials.com image 768x559]
/Just sayin'...
//couldn't hurt, anyway

Yeah, somehow I doubt the cops would believe it anyway.

It's different in that it's a completely different thing, and not illegal? How hard is that to understand? There is no law against being in public with impaired motor skills and cognition. There ARE laws against being drunk in public (although there shouldn't be, really...I don't see how it's an issue unless you're being a nuisance, in which case disorderly conduct ought to cover it).


That was kinda my point.
 
2014-01-14 11:36:52 PM
Walk with a cane or a forearm crutch.  Problem solved.
 
2014-01-14 11:39:07 PM

rev. dave: Canadian police escort you home?  Nice.  It seems even the cops up there are nicer than in the US, even when they are being dicks.


Not this guy. Lahey is a dick!


thebrotherhoodofevilgeeks.files.wordpress.com
 
zez
2014-01-14 11:44:10 PM

MustardTiger: rev. dave: Canadian police escort you home?  Nice.  It seems even the cops up there are nicer than in the US, even when they are being dicks.

Not this guy. Lahey is a dick!


[thebrotherhoodofevilgeeks.files.wordpress.com image 400x300]


But he got fired so now he's just the trailer park supervisor. Wait, he isn't even that any more...

/do I smell a shiatstorm
 
2014-01-14 11:44:55 PM
MedicAlert bracelets don't really mean shiat.

I've twice now been in medical crisis (once in the hospital, and once walking around a fairground) and nobody gave a damn about my MedicAlert ID card/necklace.  This was especially frustrating in the former case (when I was in the hospital) because they wanted to know what medicines I was taking and wouldn't just call the MedicAlert 800 number and ask them: they had my significant other run home and grab the medicine.  Even though I told them my MedicAlert record is current and updated.

I just gave up and didn't renew this year.  fark it, if nobody's going to check it, I might as well just save my money.
 
zez
2014-01-15 12:26:15 AM

feedle: MedicAlert bracelets don't really mean shiat.

I've twice now been in medical crisis (once in the hospital, and once walking around a fairground) and nobody gave a damn about my MedicAlert ID card/necklace.  This was especially frustrating in the former case (when I was in the hospital) because they wanted to know what medicines I was taking and wouldn't just call the MedicAlert 800 number and ask them: they had my significant other run home and grab the medicine.  Even though I told them my MedicAlert record is current and updated.

I just gave up and didn't renew this year.  fark it, if nobody's going to check it, I might as well just save my money.


My wife got me a Road ID http://www.roadid.com/Common/default.aspx for Christmas for me to wear out on my bike rides. I figure it's just about as useless, but at least it has my name and someone to call if I'm in an accident and it's probably less likely to be stolen than my drivers license and cell phone.
 
2014-01-15 12:45:50 AM
Jennifer Petkov cackles with delight.
 
2014-01-15 12:46:04 AM

Whazzits: here are only eleven cops. They must all know that there is a man, who appears to be drunk, who repeatedly tells them that he has Huntington's. Either they don't believe him and think he is just a very consistent liar, or they don't understand what Huntington's is, and that this man is going to slowly turn into a vegetable and be aware that he is slowly turning into a vegetable.


They don't know what Huntington's is and they can't be arsed to find out. It's more fun to pick on the guy.
 
2014-01-15 01:16:41 AM
I have Huntington's disease, so I'm getting an involuntary kick out of this.

Also, my mother has Huntington's too, and she gets accused of being drunk when she's just severely disabled.

/Still got a couple of decades left.
//Let the good times roll.
 
2014-01-15 01:21:36 AM

havana_joe: Not making this story about me... but...

My great-grandmother, grandfather, father, and aunt all died of Huntington's. My sister has it. My cousin is at risk and does not know if she has it or not. I've been tested and do not have it...

It destroyed an entire half of my family- it was the worst for my grandmother, she had to see her husband (my grandfather) and her 2 children (my father and my aunt) die of it. She died a very depressed and angry woman...

It's a horrible, horrible disease. And it's especially cruel because unless you get tested you start showing symptoms at an age where you've likely had children and now they have a 50/50 risk of inheriting it... And if you get tested and you have it there is really nothing that can be done to delay symptoms or treat it...

I feel like I won the lottery when I tested negative... although I did have a few years of survivor guilt...

My sister and I are not close but when our father was sick and before she had symptoms she would get him from the nursing home on weekends and take him home. Sometimes she'd take him out for pizza or ice cream... Little kids would be scared and she would explain that he was sick and was not scary... When some teenage punk or young adult would make a comment or laugh she would go ballistic and the cops had to come out several times to break it up... I'll always give her credit for that.

Long story short- the cops should learn about this disease and know his situation- it's rare enough that there can't be a lot of people in town with it, he's probably the only one. And they should do what they can to let him live as normal a life as he can for as long as he can....


It's horrible. I've lost 4 cousins and an uncle to Huntington's, I feel your pain. My one cousin went from a proud Marine to wheelchair bound and unable to speak in five years. My condolences to you and your family. It's a supremely unfair disease.
 
2014-01-15 01:23:12 AM

cryinoutloud: They don't know what Huntington's is and they can't be arsed to find out. It's more fun to pick on the guy.


I think Occam's Razor would say that they just didn't know what it was, and went with what was the most common explanation for the symptoms they were seeing, rather than some grand conspiracy to bully a cripple.  

I'm a medically trained person, and even I suspected drunk or high when I first saw advanced Huntingtons.  It's not something you see every day, where someone being positive ETOH very much is.  I wouldn't expect a couple of non-medically trained police officers (outside of basic CPR and first aid) in the middle of BFE to know what they were looking at right away.  Besides, the article says where the man lives, but not necessarily where all of this incidents supposedly took place.  Yes, the folks in his town would maybe know him enough, but what about the next town over?  Are we really going to expect everyone in the surrounding communities to run around town with a picture of him on their dash that says "Not Drunk" at all times?
 
2014-01-15 01:25:24 AM

Crosma: I have Huntington's disease, so I'm getting an involuntary kick out of this.

Also, my mother has Huntington's too, and she gets accused of being drunk when she's just severely disabled.

/Still got a couple of decades left.
//Let the good times roll.


Jeez, man. I don't want to say "I'm Sorry," since that feels too pitying, but there isn't really much else to say.  At least you seem to have a healthy attitude about it.  Here's hoping for the best for you that you're an extremely late bloomer.
 
2014-01-15 01:34:39 AM

Crosma: I have Huntington's disease, so I'm getting an involuntary kick out of this.

Also, my mother has Huntington's too, and she gets accused of being drunk when she's just severely disabled.

/Still got a couple of decades left.
//Let the good times roll.


Sorry to hear that. I stumble around while slurring my words too. Do you drink? Might as well take advantage while you can.
 
2014-01-15 01:55:03 AM

Shadowknight: cryinoutloud: They don't know what Huntington's is and they can't be arsed to find out. It's more fun to pick on the guy.

I think Occam's Razor would say that they just didn't know what it was, and went with what was the most common explanation for the symptoms they were seeing, rather than some grand conspiracy to bully a cripple.

I'm a medically trained person, and even I suspected drunk or high when I first saw advanced Huntingtons.  It's not something you see every day, where someone being positive ETOH very much is.  I wouldn't expect a couple of non-medically trained police officers (outside of basic CPR and first aid) in the middle of BFE to know what they were looking at right away.  Besides, the article says where the man lives, but not necessarily where all of this incidents supposedly took place.  Yes, the folks in his town would maybe know him enough, but what about the next town over?  Are we really going to expect everyone in the surrounding communities to run around town with a picture of him on their dash that says "Not Drunk" at all times?


Occam might suggest to the cops that a drunk person would normally smell like booze.
 
2014-01-15 02:05:45 AM

Bumblefark: Occam might suggest to the cops that a drunk person would normally smell like booze.


There are times when no, they do not smell like a brewery/distillery.  In fact, there are other intoxicants that give you a similar effect without smelling like anything at all.

cdn3.sbnation.com
 
2014-01-15 02:05:50 AM

Bumblefark: Occam might suggest to the cops that a drunk person would normally smell like booze.


Occam's twin bladed razor says, it's hard to smell a drunk, when you've been drinking too.
 
2014-01-15 02:07:34 AM

gibbon1: Occam's twin bladed razor says, it's hard to smell a drunk, when you've been drinking too.


Well, there's that too.
 
2014-01-15 02:23:04 AM

lack of warmth: fusillade762: The officers would ask me questions and it would take me quite some time to answer because I have issues with comprehension

So you have a condition that affects your motor skills and cognition in virtually the same way as being drunk? How is that different from actually being drunk?

Not right to arrest him, not that would stop the cops, though.  I wonder what it would take to get the cops to get a little training in critical thinking, but that would mean they would have to hire capable thinkers to begin with.

At least it doesn't sound likes he drives, so he isn't putting anyone in danger.  He could put some of it in perspective, he did get a free ride home.


It wouldn't stop the cops, except for, you know, all the incidents mentioned in THE farkING ARTICLE where nobody was arrested.

Far too many cops are dicks, but you might want to take a class on critical thinking yourself.
 
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