Last week another mass shooting occurred in Newtown, Ct. which saddened the entire country as the twenty children killed were only six and seven years old. Understandably so, this has struck a nerve among parents and people in general, as it is incomprehensible as to why someone could kill children so young. As a result, instead of the usual compassionate remarks calling these events senseless tragedies, people are now looking for answers.
The only answers being put forth right now is the usual debate about gun control and how there needs to be more mental health care available. Neither is going to prevent another mass shooting. Anyone can argue about the right to bear arms and what restrictions there should be, but just as people managed to get alcohol during Prohibition, people will find a way to get arms no matter what the law is.
More mental health care isn’t an option either. It hasn’t worked thus far has it? Has the field of mental health ever really cured anything? With no medical tests to identify a source of a behavior problem, they are only attempting to manage symptoms. Why would anyone want more of the same?
Guns and the field of mental health have been around for a very long time, yet the number of mass shootings has risen drastically with deadly results.
With twenty-six people killed in Newtown last week and twelve killed in August in a movie theater in Colorado, that’s thirty-eight people killed in just a four month period of time. Let’s not forget all the deaths that occurred at Virginia Tech and Columbine and many more mass shootings inbetween.
So what is the logical answer to these shootings? If you look at the timeline of when mass shootings and murder-suicides started on the upswing, it is at the same time as when the field of mental health introduced psychiatric drugs as a solution to behavior problems such as children’s inattentiveness, depression, and other undesirable conditions. The late eighties were when Prozac was introduced as a panacea pill and became a household name. Other antidepressants, antipsychotics and stimulants came into being. That is the only change in the past thirty-something years.
These drugs have FDA warnings of psychosis, mania, hallucinations, delusions and increased thoughts of suicide and homicide. The majority of mass murderers were on psychiatric medications, so it really doesn’t take much to connect the dots. Psychiatry will tell you that the mass murderer didn’t get enough help or they didn’t get to him in time or some such nonsense. He certainly had no problem getting their drugs that gave him the thought to kill.
The other factor to consider is that the number of people on psychiatric medications is higher today than ever. Doesn’t it make sense that as the number of people on these drugs increases, so does the likelihood of more mass shootings? It’s only logical that if more and more people continue to take psychiatric drugs, we can only expect more mass shootings.
Let’s look at two major factors as to why so many people are actively taking psychiatric drugs. One is that people are not informed of the serious adverse side effects. They are not told that it could make them have suicidal thoughts. If they are not told anything bad will happen, then people think the drugs are safe.
The other factor is who is prescribing these drugs. It’s not the psychiatrists who are prescribing the bulk of them, but other doctors. As an example, in 2007, almost three quarters of antidepressant prescriptions were prescribed by a doctor other than a psychiatrist. A pediatrician, a cardiologist, other specialists or even a veterinarian can prescribe psychiatric drugs. A medical license is all that is required.
These doctors may not have all the information on these drugs and their side effects, yet prescribe them like aspirin. Antidepressants alone are prescribed for stress, relationship problems, ordinary aches and pains and various behavior problems. The reason they can do this is because they have the authority to prescribe drugs “off-label.” This means that a medical doctor can prescribe drugs as he or she sees fit, despite the fact that the FDA approves drugs only for certain ages and certain uses.
A competent doctor who is fully educated on the dangerous side effects of psychotropic drugs would certainly think twice before prescribing them to any patient, especially children. So is it really any wonder that we have murder-suicides and mass shootings? With lots of doctors prescribing lots of psychotropic drugs with potentially fatal side effects, the resulting exponential effect is a predictable recipe for disaster.
It doesn’t help that parents want a quick fix and advertisements for the drugs meet that desire with promises of help. Unfortunately today’s society is much faster than that of yesteryear. Gone are the doctor’s house calls and with it the time and care spent with the patient to really determine what the problem is and how it can be fixed.
Next time your child has a behavior problem or you yourself are troubled, do your homework and ask questions about efficacy, safety and side effects. See someone who has real scientific answers. Then you will be helping to prevent another mass shooting, instead of being a potential future mass shooter yourself.