Get Informed–What YOU can do to end mass shootings

Mental Health Drugs and Violence Go Hand in Hand 

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gunIt is a fact that the majority of mass shootings over the past fifteen years were carried out by individuals who were on mental health drugs or withdrawing from them.  While the government and other groups are targeting guns as the problem, what about other types of violence like stabbings?  Guns can be banned entirely, but it won’t stop violence from occurring when mental health drugs are a factor.  It doesn’t matter what the method is, because mental health drugs and violence go hand in hand.

Recently, a man named John McFarland apparently stabbed a random man in a Jacksonville Walmart with a hunting knife.  He stated that he was a schizophrenic, put the knife on the shelf and waited for police to arrive.  This is not the first time he has stabbed someone or attempted to do so.  Since 2001, he has been arrested four other times.  Each time he was found mentally insane and never spent any time in jail.

Of course any irrational behavior is insane, but what made him pick up a knife in the first place, walk into a Walmart in the middle of the night and stab someone he didn’t know?  It doesn’t matter what weapon was used, what does matter is the source of the violent behavior which preempted getting that weapon.  The idea to be violent comes from the mental health drugs.  In some people, just one dosage can change the brain chemistry to give the person the unavoidable urge or thought to be violent.

Generally, people with “mental issues” are not violent.  But as just stated, once on the drugs, they can become so.  Mental health drugs do have side effects of mania, aggression, psychosis, violent reactions and homicidal ideation.   There are many documented cases of people becoming violent after taking mental health drugs when they had no prior history of any violence whatsoever.

John McFarland was diagnosed as having schizophrenia, so one can only assume he was prescribed medication.  He said he wasn’t taking medication at the time, but it is more than likely that he did at some point or he could have been withdrawing from it.  In either case, these drugs just don’t wash out of your system overnight and can affect you, your body and your behavior for an undetermined amount of time after the last dosage.

Consequently, it is no surprise that he became violent on multiple occasions.  Why he was declared mentally insane at the time of each incident was pointless, as it was the mental health drugs that were the cause of his behavior.  What is ridiculous but almost comical is the fact that the court released him on the condition that he takes his meds.  Instead of helping the man, the court was basically ordering him to go take some more pills so that he could become violent again.

Just to emphasize this point, a recent study found thirty-one prescription drugs disproportionately linked to violent behavior.  In the top ten, five were antidepressants and two were drugs used to treat ADHD.  What other proof could anyone demand when seven out of the top ten drugs disproportionately linked to violence are mental health drugs?  It’s time people realize that it’s not the weapon and it’s not the “mental illness,” it’s the drugs.  It’s time people consider the fact that drug companies don’t have our best interest in mind, but only profits.

With the above information in mind, it is outrageous that a clinical psychologist thinks people like John McFarland need long-term treatment (which means mental health drugs), but that treatment is unavailable due to lack of funding.  The risk of suicidal or homicidal ideation is clearly stated in the FDA Black Box warnings or at the end of TV ads for mental health drugs, yet these people are still promoting drugs that can cause violence.  Do you want your tax dollars funding violence?

The Jacksonville Community Council (JCCI) says Northeast Florida is one of the most underfunded areas compared to the rest of the country.  They say the lack of services for people like John McFarland is detrimental to the health and well being of all residents.  They say only forty-one percent of those in the area with diagnosable mental illnesses are treated.

This may sound reasonable, but what is behind their story is something else.  The JCCI is promoting a community program based purely on psychiatry.  Psychiatry uses no medical test of any kind to diagnose a “disorder” yet it is legal for them to prescribe mind-altering drugs with severe adverse side effects to manage a condition based only on their opinion.  That means that the JCCI wants a few hundred thousand residents of northeast Florida to be on mental health drugs without any regard to potential risk of violent side effects.

If you read their booklet, Unlocking the Pieces: Community Mental Health in Northeast Florida, you will find a solid backing of psychiatry and their unfounded practices.  For someone like John McFarland, diagnosed with schizophrenia, the treatment listed is ECT, electroconvulsive therapy.  This is one of the most barbaric treatments that still exists in modern society today.

Therefore it is a good thing that Northeast Florida is “underfunded” and doesn’t have the services to treat people like John McFarland.  John McFarland needs real help, not mental health drugs.  What is needed is that people realize that it is the mental health drugs that do cause violence.  The health and well being of all residents anywhere depends on realizing this fact.



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