Friday, May 1, 2009

Fugly Fridays: It wasn't the dress that made her ugly

Called Ugly by Wedding Guest, She Says - Glad She Did It.

LOGANSPORT, Ind., Dec. 3.- Elizabeth Lang, a bride of one day, to-night shot and killed Mrs. Mary Copple, who at the wedding supper last night, was alleged to have told other guests that the bride-groom had chosen an ugly and worthless woman for a life partner. Mrs. Lang was arrested shortly after the shooting. The police reported she made a fully confession and expressed pleasure that she had stopped slanderous remarks. In her confession, as reported by the police, Mrs. Lang said:
"Yes, I shot Mrs. Copple. I shot her down as her two little children stood beside her holding to her skirts. I killed her because she said that no man ought to marry me, and that my husband would repent.
"She said I was ugly. She said I was old. I killed her for that, and I am not a bit sorry for it. She was jealous of me and would have made my life un-happy."
The shooting followed a talk between Mrs. Lang and a woman friend, also a wedding guest, who had repeated the alleged remark of Mrs. Copple. Mrs. Lang went to the home of her father, told him the story of the killing, and telephoned for the police.

Go to this link for verification.

Now, while we judge this woman whose intent was ugly, we must also remember two things:
(1) In 1912, the pressure for a young woman to marry and produce offspring was high. A woman could not achieve success through career accomplishments, but through marriage. So such comments are quite serious offences.
(2) Mental health services were not what they are now. Not that they're always great now, but at least we have a greater understanding.

What Mrs. Lang did was horrible, but we don't know what other pressures she had. Did she have schizophrenia or depression? If so, today this murder might not have happened: recognition, assessment and proper treatment can reduce or elminate the symptoms of these awful diseases (though we still don't know causes of most mental health diseases, and not everyone responds to treatment, proper diagnosis is a start).

Canadian Mental Health Week (sponsored by the Canadian Mental Health Association) is May 4th through 10th.

For more information on mental health, go to any or all of these resources:
-Mental Health Department of Health (UK NHS)
-(UK) NHS Confederation of Mental Health Trusts
-National Institute of Mental Health (US NIH)
-World Health Organization (WHO) Mental Health


AmyJean said...

OMG. this takes the motto "if you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all" to a whole other level!

Brandy said...

Wowza! Is it horrible that I thought this was recent until I got to the 1912 part?

Jess said...

That's just crazy and sad!

melissa said...

Wow, that is very sad no matter when it happenend.

The Professional Bridesmaid said...

What a sad story; but you're right, we are very lucky that mental illness is not only recognized as such today but it's much easier to get treatment. However, we still have a lot of work today! Most of the homeless people on our streets are those with mental illness who have simply lost their way. We still need to keep up the advocacy!