To define coercion as a subjective response to a particular intervention that is an unfortunate but necessary part of the care of people with psychiatric illness is astonishing! 1 This Orwellian definition cannot go unchallenged.
Dictionaries define coercion as: ‘the act of compelling by force of authority; compulsion’; ‘the act, process, or power of coercing… arm-twisting, force, compulsion, constraint, duress, pressure’; ‘power based on the threat or use of force’; and so forth.
‘If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong’, declared Abraham Lincoln. Slavery is depriving a person of liberty because of who he is, not because of what he does or has done. If psychiatric slavery - involuntary mental hospitalisation - is not wrong, nothing is wrong. 2