P.O. Box 1253, Topeka, Kansas 66601-1253
March 1, 2001
1000 Wilson Boulevard
Arlington, Virginia 22229
(703) 247-3108 FAXfirstname.lastname@example.org
To the editors of USA Today:
Laura Parker's February 12, 2001 front page story, "Families lobby to force care" for the so-called mentally ill is riddled with myths.
It gives the impression it is difficult to incarcerate a person in a mental hospital in the USA, when in fact it is very easy. Civil commitment procedures lack procedural safeguards needed to prevent arbitrary imprisonment (called "hospitalization").
The article relies on the concept of mental illness, when in fact mental health and mental illness do not exist: These terms are nothing more than ways of expressing approval or disapproval of a person's thinking or behavior.
The article also encourages the use of psychiatric drugs, even though psychiatric drugs are almost always harmful. The most commonly used psychiatric drugs are brain disabling, and in many cases they cause permanent brain damage. Psychiatric drugs do not cure or "treat" any bona-fide abnormalities of the brain.
Anyone wanting to know the truth about psychiatry can learn more at our Antipsychiatry Coalition web site, www.antipsychiatry.org. There readers will find articles with titles such as: "Does Mental Illness Exist?," "Schizophrenia: A Nonexistent Disease," "Why Psychiatric Drugs are Always Bad," "Unjustified Psychiatric Commitment in the U.S.A.," and "Psychiatric Stigma follows you everywhere you go for the rest of your life."
Douglas A. Smith
Antipsychiatry Coalition webmaster