This leads to my thesis. What I call "sanist" attitudes and "pretextual" judicial and legislative reactions dominate social and legal discourse about mentally ill persons (and those so perceived). These attitudes affect and infect interpersonal relationships, social, cultural and political actions, judicial decisions, legislative enactments, scholarly writings, administrative rulings, and litigation strategies. They largely operate on an unconscious (and often invisible) level, and are frequently found in the writings and public pronouncements of otherwise "liberal" or "progressive" individuals. They are also rationalized through the non-reflective use of a false kind of "ordinary common sense" (OCS) and through the use of distortive cognitive simplifying devices (heuristics). Courts and legislatures often respond to these sanist attitudes by condoning (or encouraging) pretextuality in both civil and criminal cases involving litigants with mental disabilities. Frequently the misuse (and teleological application) of social science data is the vehicle through which pretextual decisions serve to reify sanist attitudes.
Michael L. Perlin, The ADA and Persons with Mental Disabilities: Can Sanist Attitudes Be Undone, 8 J.L. & Health 15 (1993-1994)