Monday, February 25, 2013

Jennifer Lawrence blew it

Oh man, I liked her! Falling up the stairs was cool, but how could she say something this stupid?

"It's just so bizarre how in this world if you have asthma, you take asthma medication. If you have diabetes, you take diabetes medication. But as soon as you have to take medicine for your mind, it's such a stigma behind it."

Nobody has to take medicine for their mind. In fact, there's probably no medical doctor anywhere who would hand a patient a prescription and say, "This is for your mind."

Psychotropic medications can be said to either control behavior or treat the brain. But doctors don't consider that they medicate minds, because they don't know what minds are, or even whether they exist. It's just not their business.

Maybe Jennifer Lawrence believes the mind and the brain are the same thing, so she uses the two words interchangeably.

And maybe she has no clue that asthma and diabetes are pretty objective conditions of the body which any given person either has or does not have, whereas the mind is a concept which has never been nailed down, photographed or perfectly tested for.

Maybe she has never heard that it's theoretically entirely impossible to prove an absence of mental illness, though courts and juries expect defendants or prosecutors to try from time to time, usually to the detriment of somebody's most fundamental rights to privacy and liberty. Maybe she's oblivious to the problem of a complete lack of scientific validity in the diagnosis of specific mental disorders, and even an embarrassingly low degree of simple reliability.

Maybe she's never heard of black box warnings on the "medicines" which she thinks people take "for their minds". Or maybe she thinks the FDA has also warned that asthma and diabetes drugs cause suicidal and homicidal ideation, long-term disability and early death. So everything's equally risky, everything's the same as everything else.

Or, maybe she's just really stupid, which would be upsetting considering what a beautiful, great actress she is.

There's one darker possibility. Maybe, like many people who glibly repeat the Pharma/APA/NIMH/NAMI orthodoxy, Jennifer Lawrence figures it will pay well enough that she doesn't care who it hurts.

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