ifeminists.com: A central gathering place and information center for individualist feminists.   -- explore the new feminism --
introduction | interaction | information

ifeminists.com > introduction > editorials

Paxil Protest Long Overdue
September 28, 2005
by Tony Zizza

My fellow Americans, brace yourself for the first annual Paxil Protest. Sponsored by the cutting edge non-profit organization, SSRI Citizen, this long overdue protest takes place September 26th through September 28th, 2005, at 200 North 16th Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This is one of the many key sites where Paxil's manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline is stationed. Paxil is an extremely powerful and dangerous antidepressant that has created havoc for millions of people and their families worldwide. It's worth noting that Paxil isn't even allowed to be given to children under the age of 18 in GSK's home country of Great Britian. Looks like the Brits get it. Right here in America, our Food and Drug Administration, (FDA), has a primarily toothless warning out there about our children not taking Paxil unless they're at least 18 years old.

On a personal level, I am both sympathetic and proud of the work SSRI Citizen is doing on behalf of individuals and their families. I am a stepfather who was successful in weaning my stepdaughter off Paxil over three years ago. While our relationship didn't turn out the way I would have liked it to, it's an undisputed fact she is better off not being a Paxil user. I can say with confidence that if it were not for her being weaned off this poison, she more than likely would have wound up on multiple psychiatric drugs. I suppose I should be grateful that GlaxoSmithKline hasn't developed an antidepressant for maligned stepfathers. Thank goodness the American Psychiatric Association, (APA), hasn't invented a new mental disorder for stepfathers called, YNMRD. That is, "You're Not My Real Dad" syndrome. Who knows how many stepfathers would be tempted to sign up for this diagnosis and drug!

All kidding aside, I first met the founder of SSRI Citizen, Rob Robinson, over the phone and via email around this time last year. I am a huge Pittsburgh Steelers fan, and I was delighted to learn he was staging a protest against Mr. Paxil himself, former Pittsburgh Steelers legend Terry Bradshaw. There were a bunch of us ready to protest at The Fortwood Center in Chattanooga, Tennessee where Terry Bradshaw would be giving a fundraising speech that would certainly be peppered with a push for Paxil. Can you believe this former Pittsburgh Steelers legend actually weaseled out of the speech months ahead of time because Rob Robinson had simply gotten the word out that a peaceful protest was planned?

Now, how will GSK react themselves to the protest on September 26th? Certainly, Mr. Paxil won't be showing his smug face. Rob Robinson's latest web site, http://www.paxilprotest.com, is a vast treasure trove of crucial information concerning the dangers of Paxil and the workings of GSK. Interestingly, Rob Robinson is not after everyone at GSK. It's all about Paxil. It's about a drug that has made billions and billions of dollars, and damaged millions and millions of lives.

So, what's the problem with Paxil? Here are just a few quick things that come to mind. Again, spend even fifteen minutes surfing around http://www.paxilprotest.com and you will be firing mad that a drug like Paxil ever came into existence.

  • GlaxoSmithKline knew even before Paxil was approved that its drug could induce suicidal ideation, dependence, and withdrawal.
  • GlaxoSmithKline uses gritty American celebrities like Terry Bradshaw to make Paxil look like a fit drug for boys and men. After all, why use a legendary football quarterback like Terry Bradshaw if you are not targeting boys and men to become Paxil users?
  • As a result of GlaxoSmithKline's hiding the truth from the public, approximately 5,000 U.S. citizens have filed suit against GSK for the oftentimes excruciatingly painful, prolonged, sometimes life-threatening withdrawal symptoms experienced when stopping the drug.
  • According to a lawsuit that was filed by New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, "GSK engaged in a concerted effort to withold negative information concerning Paxil and misrepresented data concerning Paxil's safety and efficacy when prescribed for depression in children and adolescents.
  • Paxil has impacted women as a class, as well as the population of women who are pregnant or who have just given birth to newborns.

You see, when GSK knows Paxil has made billions of dollars and continues to bolster their bottom line, they will stay in the game to devise a plethora of reasons why just about everybody should be on Paxil for some reason!

In my view, Philadelphia is an absolutely wonderful city to have the Paxil Protest. Let us not forget this is the home of the Liberty Bell. This is the home of the red, white, and blue. This is the home of Sylvester Stallone's cinematic hero, Rocky Balboa. This is the home of the cheese steak hoagie. Put this way, Philadelphia is the home of determination, sweat, and the American spirit. The Paxil Protest deserves to have thousands of Philadelphia residents, and thousands and thousands of others, tell GSK: "We don't need Paxil!"

After all, we survived 9/11. We have survived hurricane Katrina. We continue to be the most compassionate and strongest nation in the world trying to help Katrina victims with the astounding dollar figure of 200 billion that keeps bouncing around. Hey, how does any charity we receive from other countries impact this 200 billion dollar figure, anyway? We're survivors and we thrive on the good life. We don't need GSK filling our heads with nonsense about Paxil being safe and good enough for our football legends and our children.

Paxil is a daily hurricane for those individuals prescribed this poison, as well as their families. It's so easy these days to be prescribed an antidepressant like Paxil. Yet, it's a proven fact it takes very hard work to be lucky enough to come off it at all. So many lives have been ruined by thinking Paxil was the answer. A Paxil Protest is a perfect beginning to the ending of GSK's poisoning of the world with its prized cash cow. A prized cash cow that ultimately grew into a deadly herd.

Zizza is a freelance writer based in the Atlanta area. He writes frequently about mental health issues. Zizza serves as Vice President for the State of Georgia for the non-profit organization, Parents For Label and Drug Free Education. Read Zizza's "Think Twice" column at: http://www.ablechild.org/newsarchive.htm

ifeminists.com > home | introduction | interaction | information | about

ifeminists.com is edited by Wendy McElroy; it is made possible by support from The Independent Institute and members like you.