Russia bans people with 'mental disorders' from driving

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Have you seen the rather bizarre new move by the Russian government, banning all of those with 'mental disorders' from holding driving licenses? Apparently the move is taking place to tighten medical controls and try to lower the amount of accidents on the roads. You'd think that the Russian Government wouldn't be able to outdo themselves in terms of draconian policies after Vladimir Putin's implementation of anti LGBT laws in 2013, however they've shocked us all and really pushed the dictatorial boat out this time. Disorders on the list that make you incapable of driving include:

- Pathological Gambling
- Compulsive Stealing
- Fetishism
- Voyeurism
- Exhibitionism
- Transgenderism
- Transsexualism

Forgive me if I'm being ignorant, but since when did being born into the wrong body or enjoying a bit of latex in the bedroom affect how well you can drive? Has anyone ever had a car accident and cited the blame on the fact that they lost their punt on the 14:20 at Central Moscow Hippodrome?

Not only is this way of thinking archaic and oppressive, as well as being a shining example of the Russian regime's denial of human rights, this provision could be very detrimental to the welfare of Russia's citizens. As Valery Evtushenko of the Russian Psychiatric Association so rightly says, this new law could potentially deter people with mental health issues from seeking psychiatric help based on the fear of having their driving license revoked. 

Perhaps the Russian Government should look a bit closer to home when trying to identify the causes of their road accidents - for example, the Scherbinsky/Yevdokimov case of 2006. If you're not familiar with this, a member of the public was imprisoned for dangerous driving after Mikhail Yevdokimov, the Governor of Russia's Altai Krai region, crashed into him at more than 90 miles per hour and the force of the impact was so great that Governor Yevdokimov died. Ignoring the fact that Scherbinsky was minding his own business simply turning a corner when the accident happened, a judge decreed that Scherbinsky was at fault for 'not giving way to a special vehicle'. Our good friend Putin also piped up that Scherbinksy was to blame because he was driving a right hand drive car. Nothing to do with the fact that the official who struck his vehicle was travelling in a manner which was in contradiction to driving laws and speed limits, of course.

Research shows that this mindset is very prevalent amongst Russia's governors and officials, who must believe that they are above the law when travelling on the roads, as this does not appear to be an isolated incident. The questions that this raises are as follows:

Will there be reports that prove that these 'medical' restrictions have been beneficial to the country's road accident rates? And how far will Russia go in order to cast out and ostracise members of their society who don't quite fit the norm?

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1 comment:

  1. It's outstanding. I didn't think Putin could shock me anymore, but still, he suprised me (and not in a good way) yet again.

    But it seems like the European Union or the UN or any organisation at all can do nothing about it.
    I don't think we've seen or heard the last of Russia/ Putin.

    Good post, sad topic.