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In the song, In The Year 2525, released in 1969 and played on the popular radio stations, the artist sings about a future society where people are essentially zombies, powered by drugs (some would call it medication) and machines. What you think say and do is preprogrammed in the pill that was given to you. No need for reaching out and getting things, because there is a machine doing that for you…
The mental health community tends to see medication (drugs) as a major means to control behavior. It seems to me it is an industry. Certainly, some medications are necessary, especially for short term, such as tranquilizers, but it seems to be a catch all in the mental health industry.
Although, like the rest of the population, the homeless have mental issues, and may need some kind of treatment/therapy, not all do, and medication isn’t always the answer.
Given a little help from their friends, people can help each other. One evening, at the Veteran’s Memorial by the Levittown Public Library, where the local homeless and their friends congregate, they discussed their problems and their plight. One homeless guy sprang out of his seat and exclaimed “this is turning into a therapy session”, and walked away. Indeed, it was. Nothing wrong with people, on their own, having a spontaneous therapy session.
People need to think on their own (I think Maslow called this “self actualizing”.)
The mental health industry seems to have a one track mind about medications, which seems the first line of defense to combat mental health issues. I had some disturbing things happen to me, and I was having problems. I talked with someone from a local mental health clinic. Early on, maybe the first thing he asked was “would you be willing to take medication?” When I mentioned herbal remedies, the mental health center rep summarily dismissed the notion, saying Augustly, that herbal remedies don’t work.
I guy I volunteer with said he believes that herbal remedies may work with some people, but others may need pharmaceuticals.
I tried Paxil. Although my focus seemed to improve a little, I got the shakes. I was told that this was just part of the break in period. The shakes continued. I was prescribed Gabapentin to stop the shakes. That helped a little. At some point, I did some research and found information on the herb Kava.
I started drinking Kava tea, which is available at some regular stores. Shortly thereafter, I had my vitals taken, and they were great! I also started calming down. I wasn’t sure if it was the combination of the pharmaceuticals or exclusively the Kava tea that did the trick.
I’ve been off the Paxil a little more than a week and have just been drinking Kava tea at night. A friend told me I don’t seem to get angry as easily since I stopped taking Paxil. By the way, in my research I learned to steep the Kava tea in warm, not boiling water (which kills the beneficial ingredients) and use a little bit of creamer or milk with the warm water to draw out more of the good stuff.
I still get stressed out, mainly when there are triggers, but not as bad as I used to. The Kava tea not only relaxed my mind but is a natural muscle relaxer. I can sleep better in the car and if I have to get up to walk to the bathroom, I don’t have to worry about a cop suspecting me of public intoxication.
A guy in the 12Stepjourney program I’m in said that once I get squared away with God, through this peer-to-peer counseling program, I won’t need Paxil.
Herbal medicine started heading towards the ash heap of history, but it’s coming back.
There is an effort to cheat and not allow people to choose Kava in a free market. Kava was banned in Germany, based on what was later shown to be a fraudulent study. This is economic protectionism.
People need to think on their own, and not just parrot popular sound bites, such as “save the earth” and “stop global warming”. I once saw a slogan on a pickup truck that read “Human caused global warming is a product of recycled Marxism, mixed with junk science.” I thought about this and agree.
The establishment (remember that term Baby Boomers?) thinks all the homeless people need mental health treatment. If you were doing word association, the word that comes to mind to some when one says “homeless” is “mental”. Yes, there are crazy people in the homeless community who need help, but I’m not sure if legal drugs are going to help them. Some of them became that way because they did drugs.
And homeless people are not helpless. Given the chance, they can help themselves.
Homesteading the Homeless
Many homeless, like the rest of the population, have the skills and ability to build homes. The only difference between the homeless and the rest of the population is that they don’t have a home. They are not akin to the Walking Dead. We don’t see zombies walking aimlessly looking for people to eat when we enter homeless territory in the woods. No, they are not sub human creatures who can’t fit into society, although some of them, like Greta Garbo, want to be alone.
Given the opportunity, many homeless people can improvise and work with what they have. Before he and his wife were evicted from the area of the woods where they encamped, a man told me about an idea he had for a small community to keep warm and dry in the winter, which is a challenge for homeless people when it’s cold and wet.
The man’s idea is to build, essentially, forts, with a wood burning stove and a vent for the smoke in the middle, big enough to shelter a half dozen or so tents.
Why not make what the homeless have been doing to survive legal? It’s been the case that the police have come into the hideouts of those wanted by the law and took them to justice. The homeless are no more danger to the community than the rest of the population is. Only a small percentage of them are outlaws. Most of them just can’t afford a home and are just surviving.
You can help the homeless help themselves: http://www.gofundme.com/lq6sfc
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