November 10, 2023

Biden’s ‘Brave New World’ Solution

Is the use of mind-altering drugs causal or coincidental in violent assaults, or somewhere in between?

By Benjamin Martin

Recently, a colleague referred me to an article in The Hill concerning the Joe Biden administration’s request for drug companies to increase the manufacture of certain behavior-altering drugs. The report notes: “Drug manufacturers have agreed to increase their production of stimulant medications like Adderall to help address the ongoing shortage in the U.S., with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) making changes to its quota process. The U.S. is experiencing a shortage of several stimulant drugs, including Adderall, Ritalin and Vyvanse. The Adderall shortage has gone on for more than a year now, impacting the thousands who rely on it for school or work.”

It inspired a recollection of Aldous Huxley’s 1932 dystopian novel Brave New World, in which he described “Soma,” a drug that the government wants citizens to use in order to placate their discontent. A study on Huxley’s reference to the drug notes: “The government encourages its citizens to take soma to eliminate unhappiness because the government sees unhappiness as antithetical to social stability. It does not want its citizens to question the system or become disillusioned, and soma is just one of many means of social control that makes maintaining societal order easier. Soma is a form of escapism that is socially and politically sanctioned and strongly encouraged.”

Huxley mentions “Soma” 71 times in the novel, and it is akin to George Orwell’s synthetic “victory gin” in his novel 1984.

Decades ago, when academic institutions still educated students, books like Brave New World and 1984 were widely read as warnings against dystopian futures. They were considered literature and not intended to be instruction manuals for the dumbing and numbing down of students and society.

Today, you might be shocked at the number of Americans who are under the influence of personality/behavior-altering pharmaceuticals, including prescriptions to now-countless numbers of depressed women, troubled children, and other demographic groups whose lives have been disrupted mostly by dysfunctional families, and the collective results being social entropy. Currently, there are about 40 million Americans over the age of 12 who use psychotropic medications. That would include 20% of college students. And the number of children under 12 prescribed such drugs is now over 11%. This is on top of all the other prescribed medications.

To be clear, some of these prescriptions are life-saving when treating severe mental illness and organic brain dysfunctions. Notably, in the wake of the grossly mismanaged response to the COVID pandemic, disrupting lives and mandating isolation, there were a record number of suicides last year.

But most of these prescriptions are written with the gravity of suggesting aspirin.

To the point, 40 million prescriptions is Huxley’s “Soma” model, and there is evidence that such drugs do not improve long-term quality of life. Of course, those whose livelihoods depend on an ever-increasing number of patients diagnosed with depression, including the behemoth pharmaceutical companies, certainly defend the epidemic of prescription drug use.

Add to this the rising trend of administering powerful hormones to those wanting to achieve the impossible — alter their gender — and what could go wrong?

There has been a lot of focus on the abuse of prescription pain medications and the epidemic of opioid overdoses, but little focus on the epidemic of psychotropic prescription mediations.

Likewise, there has been a lot of focus on sociopathic mass assailants, but the number of those assailants using prescription-approved mind-altering drugs remains a dirty little secret hidden in the toxicology report on those assailants. Moreover, anyone raising the issue, like Biden’s Democrat opponent Robert F. Kennedy Jr., is immediately discredited. Granted, too often such conclusions are overstated by Kennedy and others, and those who exercise hyperbole to make their point undermine their credibility and the seriousness of the issue.

But there is a legitimate concern about the demonstrable correlation between the use of SSRIs and violent behavior. Some have suggested that as many as 25% of mass assailants may have been using antidepressants, and the list is growing. There is also a correlation with assailants who commit individual murders.

The question that must be answered: Is the use of these drugs by violent assailants causal or coincidental, or somewhere in between? Clearly, those who commit mass murders are mentally ill, as was the assailant in the recent Lewiston, Maine, case.

On a personal level, as a former federal law enforcement officer, I have been subjected to threats associated with psychotic drug use. Some years ago, an individual called police and indicated he had constructed a bomb with which he intended to use to kill me and my family. He explained in detail that he was only lacking a mercury tilt switch for the bomb to be completed. When the FBI determined who made the threat, the individual involved indicated he was using a common antidepressant and it contributed to his lack of self-control, including making violent threats.

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