Unique displays and graphics document fraud, abuses, deaths in psychiatry
ince opening in May 2001, a unique exhibition on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood has attracted thousands of visitors, interested by the accounts of friends, associates or teachers, or intrigued by banners outside proclaiming, “Psychiatry Kills”.
And while curiosity may lead them in, the compelling and thoroughly documented facts of this thought-provoking exhibition pull them through. Some stay for hours, reading and re-reading panels, many taking notes. Individuals from all walks of life, from classrooms of students and medical doctors to lawyers and artists, can routinely be found examining the graphic and informative displays.
Visitors find out, in 225 feet of panels, such facts as the true origins of psychiatry’s notorious electric shock “therapy” in a Rome slaughterhouse for pigs. They learn about the freak railway accident that helped to bring the world the lobotomy. They see devices employed over the years to restrain, shock and otherwise control patients, including the current epidemic use of drugs documented to cause physical and psychological disturbances and violence.
“Psychiatry was created to quiet and restrain the insane. The mission was never to cure, but to control. It has been adopted over the years to control broader and broader segments of the population who do not fit the psychiatric model of ‘normal’ behavior,” said Jan Eastgate, president of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights International (CCHR), which created the exhibition.
CCHR was founded in 1969 by the Church of Scientology to investigate and expose psychiatric violations of human rights. The exhibition is one feature of CCHR’s new international headquarters on Sunset Boulevard.
The exhibit is brutal in its documentary: graphics, models and actual contraptions, and scores of little-known facts about psychiatry, including its critical role in social blights from apartheid and the Russian gulags, to the Holocaust and ethnic cleansing in the Balkan states.
“A very informative, important exhibition,” remarked a man who was attracted by the building signs on Sunset Boulevard. “This proved that it’s all about big money. It’s good to know there are still some checks and balances in our system,” he said, referring to CCHR’s work.
“Very disturbing, but I received excellent insight,” said a university student majoring in child development. “I now look at the world and its problems in a whole new way.”
“This is an extraordinary place, extremely informative. I hope millions of lives are changed by this exhibit,” said another visitor.
Few facts in the exhibition are more unforgettable than the statistic that more Americans died in mental institutions between 1950 and 1963 than in ten of the nation’s armed conflicts beginning with the Revolutionary War and ending with the Persian Gulf War, and including both World War I and World War II. Between 1965 and 1990, another 1,103,000 Americans died in mental institutions — 70 percent more than the casualties of the ten wars.
The exhibit also documents CCHR’s unparalleled record in exposing and eradicating psychiatric abuse and crime, and in restoring dignity and human rights.
For tours of CCHR’s exhibition or for more information about CCHR: phone (323) 467-4242 or (800) 869-2247; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.cchr.org.