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According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, the number of police officers shot and killed in the line of duty went up 56% from 41 in 2015 to 64 in 2016. This translates to about 0.007 percent of all police officers. Twenty-one officers were killed in ambush-style shootings in 2016, including eight who died in two assaults in 10 days in July 2016, in Dallas, Texas and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Both assaults occurred in the context of protests against police killings of African-Americans. Ironically, the likelihood of a police officer being shot dead is far higher than that of a member of the public being killed by the police. While there is no centralized tracking system (The Washington Post and Guardian newspapers are leading sources of information), an estimated 1,000 people per year are shot dead by police, or 0.00003 percent of the general population. However, blacks are being shot at a rate that is 2.5 times higher than whites, with 0.0005 percent of the black population shot dead by police in 2016. For every black male killed by a (white) police officer there are hundreds more killed by other black males. Violent crime is largely intra-racial for all groups, but the rate of black-on-black gun homicide has led some commentators to argue, “Some Black Lives Don’t Matter” (Lowry, 2015). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data show blacks routinely constitute 50–60 percent of shooting homicide victims, despite constituting only 13 percent of the general US population. A young black man is about five times more likely to be killed by a gun than a young white man. And these numbers, dramatic as they are, understate the problem because most gun deaths are ruled accidental or the result of suicide, but in 82 percent of cases where a black person is killed by a gun, it is judged a homicide. The Violence Project I 15 Gun Deaths in America In 2014, there were 33,594 firearm deaths in the United States, a number comparable to both motor vehicle traffic deaths and opioid deaths. Politicians often talk about an opioid “crisis” or “epidemic” in America and by that logic, gun violence should qualify for equal treatment. More than 90 Americans a day die by gunfire. It breaks down to 21,386 suicides, 11,008 homicides, and 1,200 accidental deaths or other. Americans are 10 times more likely to be killed by guns than people in other high-income OECD countries (Grinshteyn & Hemenway, 2016). The rate of gun violence in the United States is not the highest in the world—approximately 30 counties in Central America, Africa, and the Middle East, rank much higher. However, those countries with high levels of gun violence (e.g., El Salvador, The Philippines, Iraq) are not like the United States in terms of G.D.P., life expectancy, and education. For this reason, America’s rate of gun homicides (3.5 per 100,000 people) is an outlier. More Guns, More Gun Violence? Guns and homicides are statistically associated. Areas with a higher prevalence of guns have a higher prevalence of gun homicides. The question is whether the relationship is causal or not. We simply don’t know because of a lack of robust data (Foran, 2016). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is essentially prohibited from studying the public health effects of guns, for example, even since NRA lobbyists convinced Congress to cut into its funding (retribution for a series of studies in the mid-1990s perceived by the NRA as advocating for gun control). According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (2010), the firearms homicide rate, and homicide rate overall, is higher in the US than other
What is the scientific evidence for an association between psychotropic drugs and homicidal behavior? Most of the available studies are case reports that only suggest a coincidental link between violence or homicide and antidepressants (2,3) or benzodiazepines (4), while very little is known about the association between antipsychotics and homicide. Two recent ecological studies found no support for a significant role of antidepressant use in lethal violence in the Netherlands or the U.S., although data on individual offenders were not available (5,6). Quantitative data from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) adverse event reporting system (7) imply that some antidepressants may be associated with a disproportionately high number of violent events (8). On the contrary, two small studies on antidepressant use among a special subgroup of homicide-suicide offenders found no evidence to support a causal link between antidepressants and homicidal behavior (9,10). There are three crucial conditions that must be fulfilled to properly study the putative association between exposure (i.e., use of a psychotropic drug) and outcome (homicide): a) the sample must be unselected, to be representative of the total offender population; b) the reason for prescribing the medication must be considered and controlled, and c) the effect of other concomitant medication(s) must be adjusted. No such studies have been done thus far on the association between the risk of committing homicide and the use of psychotropic drugs. We carried out a prospective cohort study with an embedded case-control design in order to test the hypothesis that current antidepressant treatment is associated with an increased risk of committing a homicide. We prospectively collected a database that included all homicides reported to, and investigated by, the police in Finland in the period 2003-2011 (11). From the 1091 homicides known to police, after exclusion of 12 cases not solved, 7 offenders coming from abroad, 24 offenders whose data were blocked due to security reasons, and 10 offenders excluded due to incomplete data on previous incarceration, we were left with 959 offenders, who were included in our analysis. For each offender, 10 population controls where picked from the Population Information System by matching individuals by gender, age (year of birth), and home municipality at the time of each homicide. Information on medication use from January 1995 to December 2011 was obtained for all cases and their controls through record linkage to the nationwide Finnish Prescription Register. The database contains the date of prescription purchase, the Anatomic Therapeutic Chemical (ATC) code, and the purchased quantity, stated as the number of defined daily doses (DDDs), which are defined by the World Health Organization (12). This procedure has been described in more detail in our previous cohort studies (13–16). We identified a subject as a “current user” if (s)he was using a given drug at the time of the homicide/matching, according to the amount of medication purchased in DDDs. Drug exposure was assumed to start at the date of purchase, and drug exposure duration was determined by the amount of DDDs. Previous use (Yes/No) was also based on the date of purchase and amount in DDDs. A subject had previous use if (s)he made a prescription purchase during the previous 7-year period, before the time of homicide/matching, but the drug exposure ended before the date of homicide. Among those offenders who had been in prison during the 7-year period prior to homicide, the time during their prison sentence (prior to their release) was censored, and also among their matched control subjects. Subjects aged 25 years or younger were further investigated in a separate analysis. The primary outcome measure was the risk of offending during current use vs. no current use for three major categories of psychotropic medications: antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and antipsychotics. Within the offender cohort, each individual served as his/her own control. In this analysis, individuals without any medication exposure were omitted. A Poisson regression model was used to estimate the relative risk (RR) of homicide during current use versus no-use of each study medication among the offenders. The follow-up time on medication was based on DDDs, and truncated to each person's total follow-up time. The RR was calculated for both the adjusted and unadjusted models, according to age, gender, current use of illegal drugs, current use of alcohol, and both current (i.e., at the time of the homicide) and previous use of other study medications. When comparing offenders and matched controls, the odds ratio (OR) was used as a measure for the risk, and it was estimated using the conditional logistic regression model that takes into account the matching sets (which individuals served as controls for each offender). For primary outcome measures, the level of statistical significance was set to p
originally posted by: vonclod
That guy was on a lot of drugs, not sure how to gauge anything with all that was in his system.
BTW, I'm not doubting the SSRI drugs can be dangerous.
I wonder if it has to do with straight edge people going to the doctor being honest about things that are bothering them and all of a sudden, they're on a mind altering drug with the promise this will "fix" it.
I'm no saint, I've intentionally dabbled... But if I got unwillingly altered and told to do it every day, I can't imagine the terror.
We give kids interactive rectangles to distract them from dealing with reality, and when they get to an age we can't deal with their energy and adversity, we send them to the doctor. Perhaps that's why we have so many young people feeling detached from society.
originally posted by: 0zzymand0s
a reply to: DictionaryOfExcuses
I believe it. In fact, I've got a t-shirt here somewhere.
My point was to reinforce yours, however. There are millions of people who take SSRI's every day and don't go on a killing spree. I'm thinking most of them aren't on Xanax + coke + booze though.
originally posted by: Metallicus
Well, this will come as no surprise to most of us that understand how dangerous these drugs can be when used by certain people. I wanted to bring to the forefront that the use of these drugs is all too common among these mass-murderers. I wish Government would understand that mental health and the use of these drugs is the main cause of large scale killing sprees and not tools that are used.
According to an autopsy report, Betts had not only been taking mind-altering SSRIs in the lead-up to his murder melee, but he was also taking coc aine, Xanax, and alcohol, three other deadly drugs linked to extreme violence. In other words, Betts was severely mind-altered by a combination of Big Pharma and Big Alcohol when he decided to take the lives of innocent people for no apparent reason.
The problem with the argument blaming medications for murder, however, is that though there has been a significant increase in the use of psychiatric medications, there has not been a corresponding increase in violence. In fact, just the opposite has occurred. Violent crime has decreased dramatically.
Anxiety and depression are a fairly natural response to our civilization for a small but not insignificant portion of the population. Most of our social interactions are fake. The rest are pyschosocial combat with a cheap smile plastered over it. The only game in town is infinite growth and profitability on a quarterly basis. A fistfight between two boys is a federal case. Climbing trees is unthinkable, irresponsible and dangerous. Our culture thrives on making stupid people famous. The list goes on.
SSRI's + talk therapy saved my life. I wouldn't be here without them. Fifty years on the wrong planet, playing the wrong game wore me down. I don't talk about it much here because most of our conversations are very surface level and/or externally focused, but there it is.
Should the pharmaceutical industry be reigned in? Absolutely. We can start by making it illegal to advertise them directly to consumers, like every other civilized nation on the planet. That would be a huge help I think and it would also make prescription drugs -- for the people who need them -- a LOT cheaper.
In the meantime, I'll be in my office with the curtains drawn and the doors locked. The world outside has gone crazy 'cept for me and thee (and I sometimes have my doubts about thee). If you are going out into it today, keep your head on a swivel and don't look down.