Tag Archives: Schizophrenia

The mentally ill population in the largest U.S. jail system is out of control

Screaming Inmates Make L.A. Rethink Jailing Mentally Ill

By James Nash

Inmates in suicide-proof gowns scream and bang on their cell doors one floor below Terri McDonald’s office in the Twin Towers Correctional Facility. The bedlam is a reminder, if she needs one, that the mentally ill population in the largest U.S. jail system is out of control.

It’s a “shameful social and public-safety issue,” said McDonald, the assistant sheriff who runs Los Angeles County’s jails. “I believe we can do better. I believe at some point in the future we’ll look back and wonder, ‘What took so long?’”

Read more » Bloomberg
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-09-26/screaming-inmates-make-l-a-rethink-jailing-mentally-ill.html

Depression Kills

Via Vince Sparks

Last month, I was sitting on my sofa with my laptop when I saw the headline “Robin Williams Found Dead.”

I was shocked and deeply saddened by the news and the loss. It seemed like such a conundrum as to why someone with his persona would commit suicide.

As more information was revealed about his addictions, his Parkinson’s disease diagnosis, and his dealing with severe depression, I totally understood how this unfortunate incident could occur. Of course, the naysayers had to emerge and utter incoherent ramblings about cowardice and his leftist views that made him unhappy. All of the unintelligent garbage that gets reported needs to be tossed away promptly.

Suicide is not an act of cowardice, but a result of depression or other mental illnesses.

Robin Williams’ death is a tragedy, but if it can help start a national conversation about Depression and Mental Illness than something positive can come from an untimely death. It seems that many people view mental illness through a stereotype of straight jackets and padded cells.

Mental Illness encompasses many forms and can be as blatant as someone with agitated, incoherent behavior or very subtle cue which make a person appear to have nothing wrong with them.

I understand the symptoms and the impact, because I suffer from severe depression and anxiety. It is a hard condition to understand because it affects emotions. This makes it difficult for people, not familiar with the disease, to comprehend as a real illness.

Believe me, it is just as real as diabetes, cancer, hypertension or any other disease that hides beneath the surface. It requires treatment just the same as a diabetic requires medication to keep their condition stable.

The illness is as old as recorded history.

Years ago people thought of it as melancholia. The prevailing notion would be “he just needs to pull himself up by his bootstraps.” It was an uneducated thought that if you were sad, you would just get glad again. It was a self-inflicted pity party. The more the condition was studied and as medical advances were made, clinicians realized that there are many factors and conditions involved with the illness. Depression has many causes and can stem from genetic predisposition, life events, faulty mood regulation by the brain, and medical problems.

Whatever the specific cause for depression, there are always chemicals in the brain involved. There are many drugs available for treatment, but each person can react differently due to internal chemical reactions to the medications. The complexity of the illness is daunting for practitioners. They can’t simply review similar symptoms and think that the treatment will be the same for each patient.

Continue reading Depression Kills

British Pakistani Christian Association – In memory of Shanti Nagar

Today is the 16th anniversary of the sacking of Shanti Nagar. In memory of this, we publish the relevant section of a new report on Pakistan we plan to publish quite soon.

Shanti Nagar is a predominantly Salvation Army village in the Punjab province, founded in 1916, of around 25-30,000 people. Apart from about 15 Muslim families – for whom the other villagers built a mosque – the inhabitants are Christian. Hard work in farming meant the village was relatively prosperous. On 17th January police raided the house of a 60 year old Christian, claiming intelligence of alcohol-drinking and gambling going on. The police regularly raided the village on such pretexts – usually about every fortnight, probably because of jealousy over the Christian village’s prosperity. They would harass the villagers, and because the villagers were rich enough to bribe the corrupt police, they always came back for more. Anyway, despite, as ever, no gambling or alcohol or anything else illegal going on there, they searched his property, and amidst the ransacking a box with a bible fell out. The police deliberately kicked and desecrated the bible, and took the man to the police station, even though they had found nothing illegal, and were trying to get a large bribe from him. The residents of the village protested the raid, the false arrest and the desecration of the bible, and also the numerous false blasphemy accusations that had been made against villagers. They asked for charges under article 295 to be brought against the policeman responsible. Even after police investigations found the charge to be true, the police refused to act until sustained pressure resulted in a promise to suspend the officers responsible and take them to court. Then the police pressured the village for the matter to be settled out of court, but they refused and the senior police officer threatened to act in way that meant they would not be able to stand on their own feet for at least 50 years. On 3rd February, a general election day, he posted the policeman who had kicked the bible to Shanti Nagar as security officer. This made the villagers even more angry as it proved the promises by higher police officers to take action was a lie, and they protested even more, so the police hatched a plot. Two days later, a Muslim man went to an abandoned mosque 2km from Shanti Nagar and found – so he said – torn pages of the Quran with blasphemous words and the name and address of the Christian from Shanti-Nagar who complained about his bible being desecrated, along with several others. He took it to the police station of the nearby city of Khanewal, a stronghold of an Islamicist group with ties to Bin Laden called Harkat-ul-Insar. Within 30 minutes of registering a case (and several Christians being arrested), mosque loud speakers from the city and all the Muslim villages around about were calling all faithful Muslims to wage jihad against Shanti Nagar, using word for word identical language. City church priests rushed to warn senior officials of the impending attack, and were promised that all appropriate measures would be made, but that too was a lie. Late that night, mobs started attacking churches, Christian homes and shops and medical dispensaries in Khanewal, setting them and their contents on fire. The next morning, the mob attacked the Catholic church just outside the city Council buildings. Bibles and other books were gathered from churches and burned, and the Holy Communion bread thrown on the floor, statues and the like were systematically smashed. 100’s attacked the priests’ house and burned all the parish records. Pleas for police help went unheeded, they just stood by and watched. The mob attacked a Christian boys school. Many fled, but about 50 of the youngest hid under their beds. The mob set fire to mattresses over them, and they had to flee for their lives, several being carried out unconscious. They burned all the school records and furniture. They then attacked the Salvation army church and pharmacy, and re-attacked the Church of Pakistan building they had attacked the night before. Christians in local shops and homes fled for their lives, but those who were caught were severely beaten. Again the police did nothing. The mob only retreated when Christians started throwing bricks and stones to defend their homes.

Continue reading British Pakistani Christian Association – In memory of Shanti Nagar

World Mental Health Day

World Mental Health Day (October 10), is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy.[1] It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries.[2]This day, each October thousands of supports come to celebrate this annual awareness program to bring attention to Mental Illness and its major effects on peoples’ life worldwide.[3]In some countries this day is part of the larger Mental Illness Awareness

Read more » WikipediA

What is Schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is a mysterious mental illness of delusions, hallucination disorder thought and feeling and a broken will. Some times the grip of schizophrenia calls “the cancer of mind”. Schizophrenia is a mysterious condition was first described in 1806, but no one is certain whether the illness – or more likely a group of illness – existed long before then but had escaped definition. Schizophrenia has a tendency to run in families, but hereditary alone apparently cannot explain why a specific individuals develops the full-blown illness. The term schizophrenia in 1908, describes a  specific type of alteration of thinking, feeling, and relation to the external world. The term refers to a splitting of psychic function, a peculiar destruction of the inner cohesiveness of the psychic personality. The person experiencing early symptoms, there is a dislocation of every faculty of time, space, and body, hearing voices, bizarre delusions extreme apathy or agitation, coldness towards others – taken singly unique to the illness, symptoms vary so much between individuals & over time for the same individual that the notion of a “typical case” is virtually non-existent, even the degree of disability far more severe, on average varies wildly. The defining characteristic of the illness is the profound feeling of incomprehensibility and inaccessibility that suffers provoke n other people. Psychiatrists describe person’s sense of being separated by a gulf which defies description from individual who seems totally strange, puzzling, inconceivable and incapable of empathy, even to the point of being sinister and frightening the onset of the illness dramatically intensified a pre-existing feelings that essentially disconnect from them and deeply unknowable.