Sunday, January 16, 2011

Rhetoric, Illicit Drugs, Mental Illness, How are They Related?

Regarding the horrendous shooting that happened on January 8, 2011 in Tucson AZ: some honestly believe that people's actions are their own responsibility and that their acts are not influenced by the words/acts of others. Clearly the thoughts of those who lack introspection.

Still, I heard an interesting discussion on CNN/State Of The Union this morning that included a psychologist who is schizophrenic. He talked about how heavy marijuana use in adolescence has a clear connection to the onset of schizophrenia.

It reminded me that Jared Loughner (the accused in the shootings) has said his favorite books include Mein Kampf, The Communist Manifesto, & The Wizard of Oz, while he has an arrest record for possession of drug paraphernalia.

I also watched This Week with Christiane Amanpour this morning where I heard a neighbor of Laughner's state that she saw a clear change in his behavior over the last several (4-6) years. Apparently Jared played in a jazz band earlier & the neighbor had enjoyed hearing the beautiful music coming from his home. But, she said, that changed several years ago when he became withdrawn and non-responsive.

Naturally this raises, in my mind, the need for attention to mental health care (another reason NOT to repeal health care reform) and the obvious concern for teenagers who are using unregulated (read illegal) drugs. Their brains are not mature and can be affected by such substances.

I've raised a few issues here & will stop now. What do you think?

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