It's easier to simply believe

Ruth Haag
Jul 2, 2013


My father came home one day jokingly reciting a recent statistic; bald men were more likely to develop heart problems. The reason he enjoyed the statistic is because the correlation was irrelevant. Older men tend to be balding so simply discovering that men with heart problems were balding is the same as discovering that men without heart problems were balding.

“It’s difficult to get up every morning facing the truth,” says Dr. Bette J. Dickerson, past chair of American University’s Department of Sociology. She also notes: “Many people stray from challenging lies just to keep the peace.”

Dr. Dickerson further observes: “If we get enough false information, myths and untruths long enough … we will come to believe it because that’s all we know. “

In Osaka, Japan, a man went into a school and began to kill students with a kitchen knife. In the United States, Belgium, England, Finland and France, the same thing has happened, but with a gun.

Each time one of these horrific events occurs, people start to search for the reason it happened. What they hear most frequently is much like the correlation between balding men and heart problems. The people who do these massacres are said to be introverted loners who were bullied in school. The solutions are then determined to be strict anti-bullying policies in schools and better gun control. These solutions are working as well as hair replacement treatment for men to stop heart problems.

Let’s look at the data and see if there is a truth that is hard to face. First, consider the solutions that we all are trying to believe. Bullying happens to everyone, yet until recently no one has had cause to come in shooting in retaliation. Learning to handle bullies is part of life. I have been bullied in the past few years in very nice conference rooms of respected organizations. While the school massacres are recent, bullying has a long history, so it seems unlikely to be the cause of the recent problem.

Guns and knives have also been around for a very long time, as have schools. Yet again, only recently have people used guns and knives in schools. Since knives are used in countries where guns are less available, it would not seem that stricter gun control would solve the problem.

So how do we combine introverted people who have socialization problems, a situation that has also been around for a long time, with guns that have been around for a long time, with schools that have been around for a long time? What has changed in recent history to cause this combination to become volatile?

Dr. Peter Breggin, a former full-time consultant for the National Institute of Mental Health, British Psychiatrist Dr. David Healy, and many others, say that the difference is Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, SSRIs. SSRI brand names include: Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Luvox and Celexa. These drugs are used to treat anxiety and depression along with a host of anti-social disorders. An online database, shows that almost all of the people perpetrating these horrible crimes have been confirmed to have been either using these prescribed drugs or in the process of withdrawing from these drugs. Here is an excerpt from Dr. Breggin’s report “Suicidality, violence and mania caused by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors," (SSRIs), published in the International Journal of Risk and Safety in Medicine (2003/2004). The child in this case was in a double-blind study and had been given Fluoxetine, a SSRI.

“The child’s reaction occurred long before any of the well-known school shootings had taken place. Therefore, his reaction was not inspired by the school shootings; it was not a “copycat”:

Thirty-eight days after beginning the protocol, F. experienced a violent nightmare about killing his classmates until he himself was shot. He awakened from it only with difficulty, and the dream continued to feel “very real.” He reported having had several days of increasingly vivid “bad dreams” before this episode; these included images of killing himself and his parents dying. When he was seen later that day he was agitated and anxious, refused to go to school, and reported marked suicidal ideation that made him feel unsafe at home as well.

When the medication was stopped, under supervision in a hospital, the child improved.

So now we have to decide if we want to believe this new concept as a difficult-to-face truth, or if we want to continue to believe that strict anti-bullying policies, and stricter gun control, will solve the problem.



"An online database, shows that almost all of the people perpetrating these horrible crimes have been confirmed to have been either using these prescribed drugs or in the process of withdrawing from these drugs."

Thank you for posting that link. I have a feeling that most people will not bother to click on the link because their minds are made up.

There is plenty of information on the internet if only people would look to educate themselves.

The FDA doesn't care about people. They care more about their cronies in big business.
"FDA finally concedes antidepressant suicide risk after 13-year fight for warning"

"Victims, experts and consumer advocates have been fighting for these warnings for many years. Instead of requiring a warning, the FDA has steadfastly sided with antidepressant manufacturers and, in fact, recently went so far as to intervene in private litigation involving one of Baum Hedlund’s clients in favor of drug manufacturers arguing that any suicide warning would be illegal!?

13 years was too long!
"Chemically-Induced Suicide: 80 Percent of Suicide Victims Took Antidepressant Drugs"
"The first drug in the class known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) hit the U.S. market in 1988 under the brand name Prozac. By 2005, antidepressants like Prozac had become the most prescribed drugs in the country. Today, about a dozen SSRIs are prescribed, including Paxil, Zoloft and Prozac."


Yes, we should beware of correlation/causation fallacies, but our lecturer is subject to them, too.

Ignored is the fact that people who take SSRIs generally have problems in the first place. The types of incidents discussed remain relatively rare, and it could be postulated as well that they might be even more frequent without SSRIs.

What clear is that with SSRIs, the improvement in the lives of people with emotional problems has been profound, and the reduced cost to society great. While they're no panacea, Overall, we are much better off with them than without them.

And, without advocating either way, there is certainly no plausible reason to think that fewer guns would not reduce the use of guns in violence.

But, yes, the FDA is way too cozy with the drug industry, which also benefits from a totally twisted patents system at great expense to The People. We need to fix our corrupt system so that it benefits all People, not just greedy selfish wealthy people.

"The latest figures show Prozac has about 44,000 adverse reports filed with the FDA. Out of those reports there are about 2500 deaths with the large majority of them linked to suicide or violence." (Dr. Ann Blake Tracy, "The Aftermath of Prozac...")"

The above link is about 12 years old. Many more names and incidents of violence and suicide were not mentioned.

"This website is a collection of 4,800+ news stories with the full media article available, mainly criminal in nature, that have appeared in the media (newspapers, TV, scientific journals) or that were part of FDA testimony in either 1991, 2004 or 2006, in which antidepressants are mentioned."


We learned first hand how powerful these drugs are and the terrible side affects. Our youngest daughters epilepsy exposed us to about a half dozen different drugs used for managing seizures and each of them works for a while and then stops doing its job. They also affect her personality in ways that are hard to describe. Even when she was 6 yrs old, she could be a happy and loving little girl all day long and then suddenly a violent outburst would happen that is like nothing else I've ever seen. When we change the drug or dosage, we learned what patterns to watch for and there's always a pattern in behavior and the desired effects of the drug.

It's like choosing between two devils..... the person needs the drug to combat a problem, but the same drug causes other problems.

I've never bought into the mainstream thinking that the crimes described in this article are the result of bullying, video games, abuse, etc. those things certainly are a factor, but I believe it is very small compared to these very powerful drugs being used to treat mental and nervous system issues

I wish I had a suggestion to offer, but I don't. Maybe awareness and more thorough reporting by the media needs to happen first


There's one significant difference in your situation. Epilepsy is a real medical problem, confirmed by real hard science.


True.... but keep in mind I'm sharing 1st hand experience of what these powerful drugs do to someone's mental and emotional state. That's the message Ruth is making in her article. This is a real problem and she does a great job of laying it out on the table

The Answer Person

One proven medical fact though is that men who do not have hair on their feet from below the ankles are assured of having circulation problems which tie directly to heart disease. No joke.


Or they wear shoes that are too tight.

Big Pharma has convinced Americans that no matter what the problem, there's a pill for that. Every drug has side effects. Our doctors are supposed to weigh the benefit and risk. The problem is that our health care costs are so high that if we leave our doctor's office without a script we feel ripped off.


Bingo - all drugs are essentially poisons, designed to interfere with some physiological process that evolution brought about. Serotonin levels drop in response to various stimuli because we evolved that mechanism - without it, humanity would be like the Lotus eaters in the Oddyssey, incapable of mustering motivation to effect positive change in their lives or world.


Re: "Every drug has side effects."

As a precautionary measure, make sure that EVERY medical professional with which one deals, knows EACH and EVERY medication one is taking.


Bald men typically also have more testosterone...plenty of hair elsewhere--just not on their dome. Which would maybe translate into them being more agressive. Eh, just a thought.


What's your point?

They don't have more testosterone. They have a genetic tendency for their follicles to react badly to whatever testosterone they do have, which may higher, at, or below average levels.


For once, Ruth makes an excellent point, but she tarnishes it with a fallacy in her opening segue. Studies correlating baldness to heart disease show that bald men within a given age group have higher rates of heart disease than non-bald men in the same age group. Thinking people realize that studies of this nature have been controlled for secondary variables since at least the beginning of the 20th century.


And 100 yrs. ago, bald men in the U.S. died of illnesses and conditions other than heart disease.

Possible correlation, not causality.


What's your point?


100 yrs. ago, baldness-mortality correlations could have been made for other diseases and conditions. Today they would be largely irrelevant.

Also, does the baldness-heart disease correlation hold true across ALL societies, races, ethnicities and cultures?

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

I read an amazing study that showed, with hard proof mind you, that the rate of teen pregnancy drops to 0% after the age of twenty! I think it's too good to be true, honestly. ;)