Saying No to the 12 Steps

Chris has a very excellent post on 12 step programs:

That said, if someone is given a sobriety order (which I think is very rarely justified, but that’s another argument entirely) and they violate it; back in jail they go. I have no problem with that. That is a behavioral remedy, and requiring people modify their behavior to avoid harming those around them (presuming that is the true purpose, rather than the belief that substance abuse is immoral) is a fundamental part of civilized society.

The remedies of our justice system MUST only be behavioral; once law dictates conscience, we are nothing but slaves. One must hope that through behavioral remedies we can aid people in coming to a less harmful thought pattern and lifestyle, but we cannot force them to think or feel as we wish.

So, I have no problem with a court ordered de-tox, or court ordered and enforced sobriety (including returning them to prison as a penalty) under appropriate circumstances; and if someone VOLUNTARILY wishes to enter treatment to prevent that from happening, I’m all for it. Ordering someone into therapy though, is both ineffective, and a violation of the fundamental human right of freedom of conscience.

I couldn’t agree more.   Read the whole thing.

3 Responses to “Saying No to the 12 Steps”

  1. Alcibiades says:

    I think someone is just trying to defend his mead drinking.

  2. Sebastian says:

    Hey! My mead *hic* drinking is none of *hic* your damned business!

  3. Brad says:

    Penn & Teller had an excellent Bullshit episode on 12-stepping / AA. Their points were that 12-stepping is a religious organization, does not release any statistics on how effective its program is, is secretive and hostile to any outside inquiry, and has absolutely no basis in science, psychology, and psyciatry. It was a good episode and presented both sides in a positive light, even though you know from the get-go where P&T stand.