Thursday, March 25, 2010

Psychiatric Diagnoses

Emily Rooney is the Host of Boston PBS news show, Greater Boston. It is broadcast five days most weeks for 30 minutes. Rooney who went into her dad's (60 Minutes icon Andy Rooney's) business like George Bush and Al Gore, was News Director at the Boston ABC affiliate (WCVB-TV) before her PBS gig. She shares a pervasive journalism blind belief in psychiatry. When I asked her to invite guests who criticized psychiatry she told me that she wants to have debates not a one-sided presentation. Nonetheless she frequently has on one candidate without his opponent, and one proponent of an issue with no opposition. She is skepticism challenged when it comes to psychiatry. I asked why she did not have any clients of psychiatrists to speak about abuses. She ignored me. After several months Rooney had as a guest a government disability rights advocate for persons with physical disabilities. When I congratulated her and reminded her that she still did not have any guest critics of psychiatry or advocates for persons with non physical disabilities she threatened to have me banned from Boston. I never had any letters published in the Boston Globe after her threats. I wrote to the President of WGBH-TV, her station, making the same inquiries. He replied with a list of 100 shows that were about goods and services for persons with disabilities but only one that might be about disability rights. I explained to him that human services corporations provide goods and services. Their interests may not always be in the interests of their clients. I asked why persons with disabilities were not as equally represented on broadcast features regarding unlawful discrimination. The station replied that they allow persons with disabilities access to their studios for tours and to participate as volunteers for fund raising. They did not explain why only women, Black Americans and homosexuals were featured on shows about discrimination. This video is a critical examination of one segment of her show on March 4, 2010, about a man who was called a "hoarder" and her free-wheeling discussion of his alleged mental illness. An evaluation done after the show found the man not to be mentally ill.

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