As a neighborhood movement to relocate Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings have extended across Nutley, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church neighbors are criticizing the township for lack of intervention.
Going before the Board of Education last week, Hillside Avenue homeowner Melanie Mitrano-Duffy asserted sex offenders and parolees are potentially attending AA and NA meetings at Franklin Reformed Church, claiming to have gotten confirmation from a senior parole officer from the State Parole Board. Continue reading The Latest on Nutley
Thomas Downey had just been released from prison and needed a meeting. He also needed donuts.
The story is here.
There are so many different angles from which to criticize the current state of addiction recovery. Not only is it a culture, a permanent lifestyle, and a religious institution, but it’s an enormously profitable industry that thrives on its own failure (relapse is big bucks). But it seems that people who are participating in the progressive conversation on the big stage aren’t aware that addiction recovery is a parallel universe that influences popular culture. It’s imperative that progressive voices genuinely begin to challenge it, and I’m going to try to appeal to different arenas of the activist sphere and make a case for why addiction should be part of the conversation. Right now, I am hoping to put recovery culture on the feminist radar by offering a condensed version of this twisted world and the culture it has generated. I don’t have much of a feminist pedigree, but I hope I can make a good case for its relevance to feminist activism.
I’ve spent a lot of time on this blog throwing tantrums about the fact that addiction gets no play among the skeptic and new atheist writers out there – people who actively combat quackery and religious influence in public policy. How does it escape these people that a whole branch of public health has already been handed over to the faith healers?
I have a few theories about that. But my favorite is that, despite their skepticism, they’re still a little superstitious about the topic: Addiction is such a complicated and elusive condition. Who wants to touch that with a ten foot pole? The reason addiction is such a mystery, though, is that our conventional understanding of addiction has its roots in religious philosophy – not science, psychology, or medicine – and it has not evolved at all in 75 years. Neither has the way we treat it. The vast majority of addiction facilities in this country employ the 12 Step program for spiritual enlightenment as the basis for their treatment. Things we take for granted about addiction, for instance that it’s a “progressive, fatal disease,” are completely unfounded, but they put the sharpest critical thinkers in a bind. Doesn’t everyone know at least one person who believes that their life was saved by accepting their powerlessness? How do you start challenging that if you think that someone could die of it?
“I’d be dead without AA” is one among many thought-stopping cliches that keep criticism of addiction mythology at bay. Add to this AA’s own persistent misinformation campaign, its unimpeached reputation as a benevolent organization, their noble insistence on anonymity, the public’s general ignorance, and the amount of time and effort it would take for someone on the outside to piece together a big picture. This mess has allowed a fringe religious culture to spring up around addiction and quietly influence the landscape in ways that I think would be of enormous interest to feminists. At least I hope I can make a case for it: Continue reading Why Addiction Recovery Should Be A Feminist Issue
The Investigation into The Family Foundation School has completed. All of the documents that were corresponded between the school and State Investigators is published on the main page of our website, www.TheFamilySchoolTRUTH.com.Although the investigators found serious concerns at the school, they have little legal authority over the school because the school fails to license themselves as what they are – a treatment center - claiming they are “only a school”.Our Campaign is happy to know that some practices have ceased, further protecting youth at The Family Foundation School, but we firmly believe that the school’s lack of accountability and admission of past practices can at any time re-create their history of abusive practices. The ‘school’ still employs staff that are abusive, inappropriate, and unqualified. An admitted sex addict, who is cited in numerous allegations of abuse, still lives on the campus and is still on the ‘school’s’ payroll. Staff who failed to report abuse over the last twenty years are still employed at the school. The core operating culture of the school still has not changed its roots from that of East Ridge Recovery cult and Synanon.Our campaign has come a long way in forcing the schools self-proclaimed ‘culture of change’ to actually have results, but the core operations is still the same – break a child down at any length until they submit to the 12-steps of recovery, regardless if they are actually an in need of that ‘recovery’. The School’s outright denial of any abusive or unethical practices is still cause for serious concern.The past can repeat itself and has proven to do so…at what point do we allow surface ‘change’ to be justifiable? When will all those that have been harmed by The Family Foundation School be healed? The School isn’t helping with that process, but we are committed to making sure that not one child is ever harmed at the hands of a facility with such an extensive and harmful history like The Family Foundation School.Keep on Keeping on!
(Thank you, BusBozo and JRH)
This is the first of a series on the arrest of EllenBeth Wachs, a member and officer with Atheists of Florida, a Tampa-based organization.)
There is no question in EllenBeth Wachs’ mind. Although she would be hard pressed to prove it, she is convinced her arrest and the charges are unfounded.
Wachs, who lives in a gated community just outside Lakeland city limits, was arrested March 3 in what she termed a surprise raid on her home. She was charged by State Attorney Jerry Hill’s office with practicing law without a license, a charge Wachs emphatically denies.
“They knocked on the door and asked me to step outside,” said Wachs, who said she did as requested. “They told me I was under arrest.” When she asked what was she being charged with, it was then she learned she was being arrested for illegally posing as an attorney.
This is EllenBeth Wachs:
I don’t normally go after people but Dr. Drew Pinsky is saying things that are so offensive and destructive that I am making an exception.
In the name of love and all the people who have been misled, mislabeled and mistreated by the disabling beliefs of the addiction-recovery-treatment industry–I’m calling names. And right now I’m calling out some of my least favorite company, Dr. Drew Pinsky and kind.
In a recent video with hollywoodlife.com, Dr. Drew Pinsky discusses Charlie Sheen (sprinkled with condescending head nods and ending in smug amusement because the fate of someone’s life is such a funny subject): “Whether it’s drug induced or drug withdrawal or whether he has bipolar disorder, I don’t know but right now he’s manic. That’s an acute psychiatric emergency. Bipolar patients that are manic are more likely to kill themselves or hurt themselves than when they’re depressed. So this is somebody who should be in the hospital.”
Note that Dr. Drew Pinsky is calling for the involuntary medical incarceration of someone who has not violated the law. If he wasn’t using medical terms to threaten someone’s liberty and to dehumanize them by refusing to respond to what they are saying, we would call this “libel.” But what is going on here is worse than slander because this kind of insensitive, uncaring, profit-oriented, social-control oriented behavior is destroying people’s lives.
Our friend, massiveattack — who runs the blog stop13step* — is going to be on a radio show that starts shortly — 1:00 pm Pacific. She’ll be on at 1:30.
She just let me know that she is going to be forwarding me the details, which I’ll post here, in case anyone wants to listen live. I just thought I’d give you a heads up now, so you can plan for it.
OK. Here are the details:
Please listen and call in to express your opinion.
Big John talk radio big 1380 am
You can listen in on your computer in Daytona FLorida
*I think some people have been confusing MA and massiveattack (who also goes by MA when people shorten her handle).