Inside the vegetative mind


#1

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#2

Thanks for passing along this link. One comment: I see a big difference between referring to someone as being “in a vegetative state” (which seems OK to me) and referring to someone as a “vegetable” (which seems offensive to me).


#3

You’d think, though, that there’d be an even better adjective. What with humans being, like, not plants.


#4

Thanks for changing the title. I’m about halfway through the article – it’s very worthwhile reading. I have one more suggested change: the URL is still http://boingboing.net/2014/04/21/inside-the-mind-of-a-vegetable.html. Can that be revised as well?


#5

Agreed, although that’s the currently agreed-upon medical terminology. Such terms have a way of becoming more offensive over time – after all, “idiot” and “imbecile” were once specific medical diagnoses. At least since the Normalization “movement” started in the US by Wolf Wolfensberger in the early 1970’s, there’s been a focus in human services to name the condition (“vegetative state”) rather than the person (“vegetable”) as a way of respecting the individual. That was the unstated focus of my comment – I’m more patient with the medical establishment’s updating of terminology as long as they’re making the kind of progress described in the article to actually help people suffering in that state.


#6

Neurologist Steve Laureys? He lost a lot of credibility back in 2009 when he pronounced locked-in consciousness in the case of Rom Houben, using “facilitated communication”.


#7

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