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Drug Up Your Teen Today!
This just in: Prozac is a better treatment than talking to your kid. Isn't life fabulous?

By Mark Morford, SF Gate Columnist

Friday, June 4, 2004

Is your teenager depressed? Throwing things? Sulking like she hates you and only speaking in monosyllabic grunts and playing her Staind or Avril Lavigne or Hoobastank MP3s way too loud? Sure she is. Damn kids.

Are they slouching way too much and wearing low-slung clothes and locking the door to their bedrooms and masturbating chronically, and then racking up huge cell-phone bills as they complain endlessly to their best friend about their unrequited loves and horrible parents and how much they hate life and how they're always despondent and put upon and pimply and miserable?

Solution: You need to give them drugs. Lots of drugs. Expensive ones with nice little corporate logos on them. This is the only way.

Haven't you been reading the papers? Watching the commercials? Drugs are in. Drugs are the new black. Drugs rain down from the sky like pretty purple Skittles. Drugs are mandatory and the most important advancement in child rearing since the invention of the cane and the padlock and the Catholic priest.

No, not the bad drugs. Not the drugs that cool people take and that make your kids party hard and dance all night and that make their eyes all red and mushy and makes colors swirl and skin feel like honey and makes them horny or hungry or feel really really good for awhile, until they don't. Not the ones that are cheaply produced and impossible to regulate and as easy to get as degrading sexual misinformation in public schools is. Not those.

No, your kid needs the other kind of drugs. The good kind. The kind prescribed by overpaid shrinks after the kid's umpteenth $300 visit. The kind that run about seven bucks a pop and are made by Pfizer or GlaxoSmithKline or maybe Eli Lilly, and which are roughly three times more toxic and 10 times more synthetic and a thousand times more spiritually debilitating than the "evil" street stuff, given how they're totally legal and corporate sponsored and therefore radiate this sinister venomous aura of happy culturally approved doom.

Behavioral modifiers. Prozac. Paxil. Zoloft. Effexor. Xanax. Et al. You name it, your kids can have it, and probably should. Millions are already addicted. Millions more will be by the end of this year, if not by the end of this column. Maybe you're one of them, yourself. Hi. Isn't the sky lovely today? Yes, it sure is.

Just look at them, the well-drugged teens of America, all calm and happily narcotized, walking around with their eyes glazed over and their shirts untucked and their souls drained of all vital juices. God bless America at its world-record 25 percent mood-disorder rate! The most-drugged nation on the planet! We're No. 1! So proud.

Don't you want your child happy and well-adjusted and violently, chemically torqued, his or her entire body ravaged by enough synthetic compounds and serotonin reuptake inhibitors and mood enhancers to numb a horse? Of course you do.

Hey, they've done studies. Studies that finally prove once and for all that Prozac is much more effective on your depressed miserable slouchy door-slammin' punkass teen than merely talking to him and loving him well and teaching him to appreciate life and sex and spirituality and fine artisan cheeses. So you know it must be true.

And do you know why? Why the Prozac is more effective? Because it's a potent chemical narcotic, silly! It rewires their brains and poisons their little juvenile blood vessels and kills any pesky burgeoning testosteroned sex drive once and for all!

Imagine! No more worries! No more teen pregnancy! It's just like neutering your dog! Or getting a catalytic converter on the car! Or laying down beige shag carpeting everywhere! Everything calm and soft and nonirritating, all edges filed right down. Isn't pharmacology fabulous?

Never you mind the pesky lawsuits. Like the one just filed by the New York attorney general against Glaxo over how they supposedly suppressed a bunch of studies that proved how their beloved zim-zammer brain-slammer Paxil made a bunch of kids even more twitchy and despondent and, whoops, suicidal.

Shhh. Hey, it was only a handful of kids, all right? Maybe, like, 10. Or 50. Who knows? "Acceptable losses," as they say in military parlance. Small price to pay for a whirling nation of numb smiling partially lobotomized teens who will open the door for you and say yes sir and no ma'am and wash you car for a dollar. Am I right? Goddamn right.

Never you mind, furthermore, that we have become a nation of sweetly drug-addled automatons begging at the hand of the giant pharmcos, and that only a fraction of the kids whose parents now have them sucking down behavioral meds like M&Ms actually need them, actually has severe enough brain issues and chemical imbalances and psychoemotional traumas that these drugs are small miracles.

Nossir, never you mind that the rest of those millions of nubile doe-eyed Prozac/Zoloft/Xanax teen addicts are merely being medicated to death for no viable reason whatsoever, other than the fact that they're just a bunch of angry depressed miserable angst-ridden teens and their parents are sick of trying to cope with it.

But, wait, isn't the angry-teen thing a part of life? Isn't that a mandatory stage for just about every kid nationwide, right before they evolve past it and their skin clears up and they finally get laid and then get old enough to drink and buy a minivan and have kids and finally join AA like good Christian adults?

And is it worth noting, again, that most of our drug-happy nation is merely seeking sad, silver-bullet relief from what has become a truly staggering and vicious array of social and government-sponsored ills, and are merely poisoning their bodies and numbing their minds simply because they're stressed and bored and overworked and undersexed?

Whoops, sorry. Got carried away there. Let's stay focused on the kids. Happy, happy kids. Let's not get away from the frightening fact that the U.S. now harbors millions -- millions! -- of Prozac-addicted teens and no one blinks an eye, and yet one kid ODs on ecstasy at a rave due to rampant insulting misinfo put out by the CDC and suddenly it's furrowed brows and pointing fingers and scrunched imbecilic senators railroading the moronic RAVE Act through Congress as they suck down another fistful of Vicodin with their fourth martini. The simpering hypocrites.

Whoops, sorry again. No name-calling. That never gets us anywhere. Guess I'm just getting a bit angry. Maybe a little frustrated at the rampant wholesale corporate-sponsored government-enhanced parentally condoned drugging of kids in this country, and what that means for our future, and theirs, and the future of their attitudes and perspectives and the deterioration of their brains, penises, souls, karmas, love lives, vibration, evolutionary status.

Maybe I'm just getting a little too goddamn depressed by it all. Maybe I just need a pill. And a drink. Ahhh, there now. Much better. Thank you, Eli Lilly. We're No. 1!


  • Thoughts for the author? E-mail him.
  • Mark's column archives are here

    Mark Morford's Notes & Errata column appears every Wednesday and Friday on SF Gate, unless it appears on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which it never does. Subscribe to this column at sfgate.com/newsletters.

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