Free John Hinkley!S

In 1981, John Hinkley shot Ronald Reagan, to impress Jodie Foster. He has been locked up in a mental ward ever since. It is time to free him, screenwriter and warblogger Roger Simon says, for some reason.

Come on, it was the '80s, everyone was a little wacky! Who didn't try to impress closeted lesbian Hollywood actresses by assassinating world leaders, back then?

Hinkley has not been crazy since 1985, according to doctors, and he is not even depressed anymore, even though he's been locked up in Arkham Asylum for almost 30 years. That is more time locked up than many murderders get, though most murderders do not shoot American Presidents.

And that is the problem here: Hinkley is not some regular formerly crazy attempted murderer. He shot Reagan! So every few years Hinkley asks to visit someone outside of his hospital and his doctors say ok and then the Justice Department makes a fuss and then a judge says to stuff it and let Hinkley go out for a while.

So yes Hinkley should be released, obviously, because he is not a danger to anyone, anymore, and civilized nations do not lock people up forever just because it is politically expedient to do so (except when they do, obviously), but what the hell does Roger Simon care about it? Does Roger Simon hate Ronald Reagan, and freedom? Who will he want freed next, Squeaky Fromme? Charlie Manson? Hitler?

[Photo: AP]

Update: This is the other Roger Simon. The non-crazy one.