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Sunday, December 16, 2012

It's the pills

I emerge from my self-imposed writing hiatus to tell my readers the vital truth they need to know to protect themselves and their families.

As we react to the horrible events in Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 children were recently killed, we ask ourselves, why? Why do people do things like that?

The answer is clear--these people have lost their humanity. They can't feel any emotions for the damage they do. They've lost all sense of empathy, which is the basis of compassion.

People aren't like that, naturally. Their minds have to be altered. The insanity at some point has to be cultivated.

Young people are increasingly diagnosed with mental illnesses. As many as one in five college students have been diagnosed with a mental disorder. The diagnosis so frequently handed out is "ADHD"--Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

We don't know if the higher number of diagnosis is due to higher rates of mental illness, or that diagnosing these issues has gotten far
better. Clinically, diagnosing mental illnesses is a subjective method, hardly scientific enough to render a single doctor's opinion as immutable.

Tinkering with the brain's chemistry is a risky process. These are young people, with developing brains. The drugs they're being
prescribed tinker with the delicate biological balances occurring between the neurotransmitters of the brain at a crucial time in the
development in the brain. No one knows how giving these chemicals to younger and younger children will affect them.

We're finding out--the hard way--that these drugs do not fix the underlying mental illness. Like so many other pharmaceuticals, these drugs stomp the symptoms. The root cause of the hyperactivity (which could be caused by something as simple as diet or a lack of exercise) isn't addressed; a bandaid is put over the condition causing the problem, which might require far better efforts at treatment than our mental health industry is able to provide. I mean, if indeed 1 in 5 need help for a mental disorder, then how can our resources be stretched to cover millions of young people, and provide them with individual therapies and ongoing outpatient support?

I'll put forward a possible reason for the higher diagnosis rate: the mental health professionals who prescribe these pills are rewarded
monetarily for selling them. Like pushers, the mental health establishment has sold out to the pharmaceutical industry.
The health care industry has also come under the control of pharmacological imperative, which aims to benefit from its relationship with front line medical people who are in a position to enable an ongoing stream of profits.

In the movie starring Brendan Fraser, "Extraordinary Measures," Fraser's character, John Crowley, desperate to find a cure for the illness affecting his children, makes a compelling pitch for funding to pharmaceutical executives based on the recurring boosters that
would be required. In other words, drug companies won't take a product to clinical trials until, first, they know they can make a stream of revenue. A one shot and done vaccination isn't good enough. Could this be the reason why the industry hasn't found a cure for any significant disease since polio in the 1950's?

If I were an investor in the clinical trials--which cost hundreds of millions--I would want to see a profit. So our capitalist system
puts the health of our population at greater risk.  Diseases aren't cured; promising vaccines are scuttled in favor for higher profit treatments. Rather than address the cause--a process which may make pharmaceutical intervention less important--the symptoms are stomped, and the patients milked.

We'd have to be naive to believe that the profit motive hasn't affected the mental health industry. Our culture encourages the quick fix, and the pharmacological industry is happy to oblige us with a magic helper, a mind-altering fix when it comes to drugs that affect the brain.

We do, know, that these school shooters almost always are on psychiatric medications. The mentally ill have always been with us, but the school shootings haven't. What's changed?

The pills. The drugs we so recklessly consume are changing us...permanently. And just because you're not taking one of these meds, don't think you won't be affected eventually.

Addressing the root cause of the school shootings requires us to look at ourselves more critically. Americans don't like self-
examination; we don't like questioning assumptions, especially about the role of pills in treating what ills us. Mental illness is a
topic most Americans hate talking about.

Then there's the medical privacy, of young people in particular. In an age where a careless post on some social network site can condemn someone professionally, permanently, exposing individuals for their treatment of a potential mental disorder can doom them to a life of stigma. So we keep the use of these psychotropic drugs secret. The public isn't even allowed the opportunity to see the psychiatric treatment records of school shooters post mortem.

For good reasons, the mental health industry has safeguarded patient privacy, particularly of the young. Children are at a time of massive hormonal changes, as well as dealing with stress they've never dealt with before, and therefore lack the coping tools of older adults. We've all rebelled as teenagers, there's nothing new about that. There is however a wholly newfound propensity for schools to screen students for what are quite normal and natural behaviors.

Of course the drug pushers are waiting to medicate for the slightest reason, whether or not the pills cure it. As a matter of fact, it's
better if the drug doesn't cure the underlying cause, because then the patients would be off the meds, and producing no profit for the
drug dealers.

Making matters worse is the relatively new concept of bioaccumulation. This theory says that tiny amounts of chemicals collect in our bodies over the years, and produce in us disease, cancers, and other problems like arthritis, Parkinson's, autoimmune disorders, etc..

For substances that cross the blood-brain barrier, there's no way to metabolize the drugs. The brain can't determine how much is too
much. By plying the minds of the young with large and increasing dosages as they age into young adulthood, we've created ticking time bombs. We don't know how pharmaceutical treatments will affect people over the long term. And dosage levels appear to be applied recklessly, without any apparent attention paid to how ever-growing quantities of these drugs accumulating in the brain might affect their takers.

Then there's the addictive properties of these drugs. Carelessly, addictive properties of these drugs exhibit are cast aside, masked as
side effects by those that prescribe them. Just like a street drug, addiction, particularly physical addiction, close the deal and create
repeat, and involuntary customers.

Have your ever asked people who take these drugs feel if they miss a dose, or worse, two or three? Their brains go into withdrawal. They begin to crave the drug. If the pill-taker doesn't get a fix, and tries to go cold-turkey on their own, they risk entering a psychotic

Sad it is when the imperative to sell more drugs puts at risk the safety of our communities. These killers aren't born, they're made. The behaviors they exhibit are not the product of natural brain chemistry. Through psychiatric drugs, harmless and decent children can be made into killers.

I think it's come time to stop the use of the drugs. Unfortunately, since millions of people and children are hooked, weening them of
their addiction may be impossible. We simply lack the resources to provide the mental health services necessary: this is why pharmaceuticals present a convenient alternative--professionals and resources are stretched too far.

Society can't afford to continue to maintain this status quo. The frequency of school shootings has created an atmosphere of fear in our nation. The cause, mentioned not once in any of the mainstream media coverage I have watched, is the pills that the perpetrators of these massacres. It's not their evil minds, it's their altered brain chemistry. It's not the guns--though I'm sure they'll be targeted, it's the psychiatric drugs. Drugs are turning many of our young people into monsters, demons.

Thanks to the media blackout, I wonder how many more children will have to die. How many more Newtowns will we take? As long as the corporate media depends on advertizing revenue from the pharmaceutical industry, the truth will be hidden.

If the threat is as bad as I hope it isn't, then we will need to seek alternative therapies, and help detoxify, gradually and safely, the
affected. As long as there's insufficient consensus-building that change is needed, the status quo will win out, more and more of these drugs will be prescribed and more and more massacres will occur.

The over-prescription and over-medication of dangerous psychiatric drugs is to blame.

This post uses as its main source the content in the stunning documentary "How Psychiatric Drugs Can Kill Your Child"

The documentary, originally in French, should be required viewing for any family who has a family member taking psychiatric drugs.
While the risk of a family member becoming homicidal, or simply suicidal may be low, the consequences are shattering. Indicators that a psychotic episode upcoming aren't apparent, or recognized by family members. Many of these school shooters exhibit isolation and disconnectivity, among many other behaviors, as side effects of their medications. Every parent in America needs to learn what they are, and intervene when they appear.  Better yet, parents need to educate themselves about the risks of psychiatric medications, particularly when the mental issues can be remedied through non-pharmaceutical forms of intervention.