Psy­chi­atric drugs the is­sue

The Courier & Advertiser (Dundee Edition) - - COMMENT -

Sir,– As the search for an­swers be­gins fol­low­ing the in­dis­crim­i­nate shoot­ing in Las Ve­gas, the cause of sense­less vi­o­lence once again goes firmly un­der the spot­light.

It has been said many times be­fore; there is never one sim­ple ex­pla­na­tion for what drives a hu­man be­ing to com­mit such an un­speak­able act, but a com­mon de­nom­i­na­tor has sur­faced in hun­dreds of cases – pre­scribed psy­chi­atric drugs, doc­u­mented to cause ma­nia, psy­chosis, vi­o­lence, sui­cide and, in some cases, homi­ci­dal ideation.

For decades, the Ci­ti­zens Com­mis­sion on Hu­man Rights (CCHR) has been col­lect­ing in­for­ma­tion on nu­mer­ous sim­i­lar acts of sense­less vi­o­lence, acts where the psy­chi­atric con­nec­tions have even­tu­ally sur­faced.

A re­cent ex­am­ple con­cerned the gun­man in­volved in the Fort Laud­erdale tragedy in Jan­uary.

It was re­vealed he was be­ing “treated” for men­tal health is­sues.

Then there was James Holmes, who mur­dered 12 peo­ple in a Colorado cin­ema.

It was re­vealed he, too, had been “treated” for men­tal health is­sues and had been pre­scribed an an­tide­pres­sant drug.

It also sur­faced Ger­man­wings co-pi­lot An­dreas Lu­b­itz, who flew Flight 9525 into the Alps, killing all the pas­sen­gers and crew, had been un­der psy­chi­atric care and was be­ing treated by sev­eral psy­chi­a­trists.

While gun laws in the United States are put to the top of the list as a means of cur­tail­ing such tragedies, the role of psy­chi­atric treat­ment, es­pe­cially psy­chi­atric drugs, should also be in­ves­ti­gated and closely scru­ti­nised.

The safety of psy­chi­atric drugs has been ques­tioned for years now and, with so many vi­o­lent deaths and sui­cides linked to their use, pub­lic safety con­tin­ues to be com­pro­mised.

World­wide con­cerns have been re­flected in

the re­lease of 27 in­ter­na­tional drug reg­u­la­tory warn­ings on psy­chi­atric drugs cit­ing ef­fects of ma­nia, hos­til­ity, vi­o­lence and even homi­ci­dal ideation.

It is vi­tal to con­tinue re­peat­ing this mes­sage about the dan­gers of psy­chi­atric treat­ments un­til it gets through to those who can make the nec­es­sary changes so that pub­lic safety is no longer com­pro­mised.

Brian Daniels. East Grin­stead, West Sus­sex.

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