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View Diary: Something Has Changed, But What? (315 comments)

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  •  really? (6+ / 0-)
    All of these drugs are widely available on the global pharmaceutical market and form the backbone of adolescent (and adult) psychotherapy in every industrialized country.
    Having lived in Germany for almost 20 years, and worked in education and social services, and raised three children (two of whom have ADHD diagnoses), I would be very, very surprised if adolescents were really medicated here to the extent that they are in the US. I don't have any data on that though, do you? Would interest me. I have NEVER heard of even one case of medication without therapy and close supervision by a psychiatrist specially trained to treat children and adolescents.

    OTOH, Germany also has strict gun control laws.

    AND excellent universal health care and access to mental health care and social services.

    I'm not making a call one way or another about what exactly is responsible for the increase in mass gun violence to the extent that there has been one.

    But I think that taking a good, hard look at the culture of prescription drug use instead of psychotherapy is indeed a step we need to take.

    Maybe just maybe our foremothers and our forefathers came to this land in different ships. But we're all in the same boat now. - John Lewis

    by bluesheep on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 11:26:01 AM PST

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    •  I don't personally believe (8+ / 0-)

      that there is a single, monocausal explanation for the tragedies that we've seen or will see, or that Germany is a good example for us. I'm half-German myself and lived there as long as you did, and find their entire social model far less individualistic and rights-focused than ours.

      That said, what I'm personally interested in right now is real answers, not the usual tripe from both sides of the gun debate.

      Fuck you, I put on pants yesterday.

      by MBNYC on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 11:38:17 AM PST

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      •  I agree... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MBNYC, gerrilea, wonmug

        ... and I was not suggesting that Germany is a good model.

        Nor do I believe in any monocausal explanation of mass gun violence. Which is exactly why I think it's important to take the possibility the diarist presents seriously as a potential factor in this very complex problem

        And I am not on either side of this debate. I am on the side of informed discussion, which is why I asked if you had more data. And the data you quoted gave no indication of the percentage of those drugs being prescribed to young people.

        And I am not looking for a fight.

        However, I do take seriously the possibility that widespread prescription of psychotropic drugs to adolescents could be an issue that we as a country need to talk about.

        I followed one of the links the diarist added and found a disturbing  and to me surprising fact:

        It needs to be emphasized that most of the developed world’s drug regulatory agencies, including the FDA, have not tested psychotropic drugs for safety or efficacy on human brains under the age of 18 (either short term or long term), and therefore those agencies have not approved their use for that group (with rare exceptions). It also needs to be mentioned that no combination of two or more drugs of any class (again with rare exceptions) have even been tested for safety of efficacy in the rat labs.
        My initial point was simply that I do not believe that the use of those drugs is the backbone of adolescent psychotherapy in Germany. And I think that distinction might be relevant.

        Maybe just maybe our foremothers and our forefathers came to this land in different ships. But we're all in the same boat now. - John Lewis

        by bluesheep on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 12:21:52 PM PST

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        •  I think this is key. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bluesheep, gramofsam1
          Nor do I believe in any monocausal explanation of mass gun violence. Which is exactly why I think it's important to take the possibility the diarist presents seriously as a potential factor in this very complex problem

          And I am not on either side of this debate. I am on the side of informed discussion, which is why I asked if you had more data.

          All the flamewars going on around the site right now might give folks some immediate emotional gratification, but experience suggests that understanding seldom follows.

          To answer your question about psychotropics in Germany, I simply don't know. I got my healthcare from the U.S. military there. What I can tell you is that there is a strong cultural bias in German society against mental disorders and their treatment. We don't have a similar view here, quite the contrary, we over-medicate, cf. here. That said, those German youth that do get mental health treatment get the same meds we do, perhaps with a stronger emphasis on homeopathic remedies; but that's, again, a cultural artifact without hard data.

          Fuck you, I put on pants yesterday.

          by MBNYC on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 01:02:02 PM PST

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    •  I'd be willing to bet that, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MBNYC

      if Germany changed its gun laws to match those of Vermont, there would not be a measurable increase in the level of violence in German society.

      Not that I'm advocating that... Germany is a free and democratic society, they live under the laws they want. Since there is not (that I know of) a widespread movement to change the laws controlling German citizens' ownership of firearms, and since they don't have a constitution which places the power to disarm the citizens beyond the reach of their government, they have what they seem to want, and I am content for it to be so.

      Germany takes much better care of her people than we do. Therefore, Germans are simply less likely to do crazy shit than Americans are. It's not like diesel fuel and cow shit are hard to come by in Germany... if significant numbers of Germans were inclined to kill large numebrs of other Germans, they could do so, and they don't. Or at least, they haven't for the last 70 years. I figure that they looked into the abyss, and the abyss looked into them, and they decided that they didn't want to see it ever again.

      --Shannon

      "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
      "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

      by Leftie Gunner on Sun Dec 16, 2012 at 08:35:07 PM PST

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