A blogger at Oxford Dictionaries points out that two of the most common political insults are to call an opponent a loon or a lunatic.
Under the communist Soviet Union, political dissent was deemed a psychiatric disorder, and opponents regularly were sent to mental institutions.
Critics say it’s still going on in Russia.
Whether or not that’s the case, it’s definitely going on in France.
There, according to Agence France-Presse, Marine Le Pen, the leader of the right-wing National Rally party, has been ordered to be examined by a psychiatrist “to determine if she “is capable of understanding remarks and answering questions.'”
It’s because she posted online a few of the horrific torture images produced by ISIS.
They include the beheaded body of a man on the ground and a pilot burned alive in a cage.
She “revealed on Twitter her shock and anger at being ordered to undertake a psychiatric assessment,” AFP said.
She came under investigation for allegedly circulating “violent messages that incite terrorism or pornography or seriously harm human dignity” in a case that began some months ago. The report said magistrates in Nanterre ordered the visit to a psychiatrist.
“I thought I had been through it all: well, no! For denouncing the horrors of Daesh (ISIS) by tweets the ‘justice system’ has referred me for a psychiatric assessment. How far will they go?!” she was quoted saying.
She warned that the regime was “really starting to worry me.”
The magistrates want the results as soon as possible, and some commentators defending the ruling saying it’s common for people accused of distributing images of violence.
Jacky Coulon, a representative of the magistrates union, said in the AFP report, “She is a political personality but this is not a political decision.”
It was the images of the violence inflicted by ISIS that in part enraged the world and brought down civilization’s judgment against the Muslim army that had taken over large parts of the Middle East while Barack Obama was president. Since Donald Trump’s election, ISIS has lost most of the territory it seized.
ISIS has released images of crucifixions, stabbings, beheadings, burnings, drownings and mass executions.
As for Le Pen, the report said she doesn’t plan on making a psychiatric appointment.
“I will wait to see how the magistrate intends to force me,” she said.
“I am being charged for having condemned the horrors of Daesh (ISIS),” Le Pen told AFP. “In other countries this would have earned me a medal.”