Apparently, this was never filed. I thought I had filed it, but while searching earlier, I realized I had no confirmation of receipt from the DOJ. Excuse the formatting. The Complaint Form has a specific allowance for characters (which may be why they never received it, since I used paragraphs, which exceeded the limit.) So you have to scrunch everything together. Sure would be nice, if they let you know that, you know, had, oh, whatever.
GREATER BALTIMORE MEDICAL CENTER (GBMC)
“I was under the impression that I had filed the following complaint with the DOJ on July 23, 2015. However, I cannot find receipt of acknowledgment from your office. This is what I wrote on July 23, 2015, addressed to the ACLU, now edited to provide further details. This past week, I experienced a nightmare when I went in GBMC ER for an allergic reaction. I had been to the ER on Saturday night, suffering from heat exhaustion. The previous night, Friday night, Paramedics pulled me from my car and took me the Hopkins ER. On Saturday night, the symptoms of heat exhaustion were still present and my psychologist recommended I go to an ER other than Hopkins and I did. There, once the Attending Physician discovered I had a psychiatric diagnosis, left the room. A Fellow doing his Residence in Psychiatry, then came (I never saw the MD again) to discuss my psychiatric diagnosis, which is fine. That seemed to go well – at least that was my impression. The next night, however, was when the nightmare emerged and the sadistic behavior of the staff there was clearly visible. I had a systemic allergic reaction after I had eaten something and my hand became swollen. The same physician who had attended me the previous night also saw me that Sunday night. But before I saw him, a nurse attended me, and gave me 50 or 75 mgs of Benadryl to reduce the swelling on my hand. After that, a Physician’s Assistant saw me, and the first thing she said to me: “I can see that your Bipolar symptoms are exacerbated.” I looked at her and said: “What are you talking about? I’m here because of a severe allergic reaction.” My body was producing hives as we spoke. “Where did you get that information, about the exacerbation of my Bipolar symptoms? “It’s in your chart,” she said. “Really? And who put it in my chart?” The psychiatric resident,” she said. When the doctor arrived, I immediately addressed staff treatment of those with psychiatric diagnoses. He became hostile. And refused to examine my hand, and from a distance, called it a “superficial bruise.” Then, I said, there is no reason for me to be here. And I left, walked out. He didn’t stop me. A friend who was with me that night (an Epidemiologist) returned to the ER and discussed the reason why I was there. The Attending Physician then said, I could come back and be examined by another physician. However that is not what happened. I was tricked and escorted without my knowledge and locked in a ward with 2 security guards present and additional nursing staff. “What is going on?’ I said. They said they wanted to evaluate me. That is NOT why I returned to the ER. Furthermore, they had no right whatsoever to do this, as it was not the psychiatric diagnosis that was problem, but the allergic reaction that brought me to the ER. They had incarcerated me against my will, but in a most sinister fashion, through trickery and malice, because I had earlier challenged their treatment of psychiatric patients. If my friend had not been there, they had the power to hold me, a clear violation of my civil rights, and a dangerous breach of ethics. I demanded I be released, and they were forced to comply.
This type of behavior needs to stop.”
Americans with Disabilities Act Discrimination Complaint Form
Thank you for your complaint. Please retain and refer to the following reference number for any correspondence concerning this complaint:
It was one of those days …
When you got too much going on up there, and not enough sense of the world, outside of there, the 3-dimensional one — ‘ya know, the one I’m talking about, this one here — when the wires get crossed — and you start to get lost — when you start to rhyme, then ‘ya start to screech, cause ‘ya never did intend to rhyme — whether it’s up there or here, when you start to ask questions — you shouldn’t have to ask, when ‘ya start looking for things, you don’t need to be looking fer, going up and down stairs, —
If only things were just a bit more copacetic, but they’re not —
And you’re tickled to discover …
When you see you’re still here —
And you jus’ can’t help but smile at yourself.
Bitching and Moaning
I am always bitching and moaning about the service economy we have become, but really offer little in terms of service, as the stupidity of people seems to increase exponentially each year, likely because of the impoverished educational skills we now teach, which require no thinking whatsoever, and reward rote learning and test skills over thinking and asking lots of questions, which seems to me is exactly the meaning of learning — not parroting facts and figures, but actually questioning where those facts and figures come from, instead of blindly accepting them on some elusive authority that hangs in the air.
So let’s just look at the first contact in service fields — the Retail Industry.
First I have to state that I have always been a compulsive label reader. I’ve always wanted to know what I’m eating, so I’ve been scouring labels on supermarket shelves forever, and the same with products that I purchase — I want to know where they are made, so I can decide if I want to support that economy or not. And let there be no mistake, the biggest manufacturer in the world today is China.
At first, I noticed the label Made in China on toy products, decades ago — the kind of things that didn’t cost much and broke easily, trinkets. Gradually, the list of items manufactured in China grew, and now it is difficult to find anything that is not made in China.
It’s depressing. Personally and economically.
But although China is the main manufacturer of most products made today, it is not the only one. Cheap labor is also had in the other Asian Countries, from East to West. However, the most pathetic item I ever came across that had been outsourced was a plastic laundry bag in a hotel room — Made in India!
Another depressing thought. Are we so stupid that we can no longer manufacturer cheap, plastic laundry bags?
While this shift was occurring, it seems we also developed a bigger and bigger appetite for objects that conveyed status, either from handbags or the name of a designer on clothing purchased, which afforded the designer free advertising, the name emblazoned there for all to see. Ironically, there was a period when designers, especially of handbags, waged a minor protest about knock-offs, clones of the real thing. But as designers also succumbed to the realization that if they manufactured their products in Asia, they would make shit-loads of money, as opposed to paying workers here to make those products, which, alas, would require they pay a decent salary and demonstrate humane tendencies, and help those struggling to survive in this abysmal economy, which is so not in the Bible of Corporate Philosophy, that protest dissipated. So, really, at this point what is the difference between a knock-off and the real thing?
Our market has become over-saturated with designer labels that for me, at least, has led to an aversion response whenever I see this stuff. I first noticed it while subbing in high schools in the affluent Montgomery Country School System, Maryland. I reached the point where I felt if I saw another — See? I have blocked the name, and can’t remember it! — I would gag. Everybody had these jackets, from Gang Bangers to the Preppy Population. The air become polluted, and my eyes, fatigued, from the constant monochrome message pasted on student bodies.
(Nor do I understand the appeal of those cheap-looking, plastic bags that sell for over a grand, with the YSL logo emblazoned on the them. What’s up with that?)
The Extrapolation of Education
Going back to that anemic learning environment we call Education today, I find that there are parallels between that and the intelligence of the work-force.
The lack of curiosity has turned people into working and shopping zombies. Go to any upscale shop today, and the sales associate is clueless about the product’s manufacturing history. My favorite is Coach. What a status symbol that is, huh? Now there was a time when Coach manufactured its bags in America — not so, anymore. How long have they been manufacturing in Asia? Not sure. But long enough. I think I bought my first Coach bag 3 decades ago. That bag was manufactured in the U.S. But the name has become so synonymous with prestige, that most women don’t even realize that these bags are all manufactured in China. So as Coach reaps substantial profits, while its headquarters building in NYC appears abandoned, even if you point out where the bag was made, after asking the sales associate where the bag was made, they give you a dumb look, a blank look, like nothing whatsoever is there, empty minds —aside from designer logos floating around.
Check any designer label, and you’ll find the same manufacturing label. You would be hard pressed to find something that is actually Made in America. Calvin Klein, Ann Taylor, GAP, J.CREW, Madewell, Michael Kors, — I’m drawing a blank here, but go ahead and play Hide ‘n Seek with designer labels, especially now that they bury the origin of production deeper and deeper into the pockets of the items they sell. They’re catching on. Especially disappointing are those designers who exclusively produced their clothing in America then succumbed to allure of Asian manufacturing. Eileen Fischer, for example.
Now whether there is a correlation between our decline in critical thinking skills because of the frenzy to keep testing students for what they already know, which is not much, but surely makes testing companies happy, and the absence of producing anything of significance in this country, may be an unknown, especially since I have not seen any researchers tackle the monumental task of measuring Stupidity and the Decline of Manufacturing in America.
Below is the most gratifying comment I’ve ever written! In response to The Absurdist Tragedy of Greece now –
(The Final Act. Scene I)
See? Democracy works. But if you just sit on your ass, glued to soap operas and reality show nonsense, instead of getting out on the streets and making your voice heard (It’s hard work, dammit!) and then you elect a government that reflects the nation’s angst … someone outside the Tower of Babel, concedes that common sense must prevail, instead of the yahoos who keep squeezing and saying, “MORE austerity. More!” What is it that they refuse to see? That it’s been an abysmal failure? A humanitarian disaster?
As for those former ministers – Samaras, et al – who now have the nerve to challenge the current government, they failed miserably. They were squeamish about standing up to those EU ministers, and thus, they played an active role in the present state of the nation.
Of course, the people will once again say – as they’ve said many times before – OXI. Enough of this Absurdist Drama. But you can bet plenty of material will be there for Satirists, both high-brow and lo, to feast on for generations and generations and …
Good work, Boys!
Go there and come out stark raving mad?
Sheppard Pratt Asylum Is designed as a Critical CARE Psychiatric Stabilization facility for those who struggle with medical conditions such as Bipolar Disorder (like myself) or any other psychiatric “diagnosis.” It has an impressive and illustrious history as an innovative facility when it was first conceived and built in the mid-19th century – a refuge, with its concentration on humane treatment.
However, reputation, to be sustained, must demonstrate consistency of those values and principles, rather than regression from them.
Undoubtedly, Sheppard and Pratt are totally turning in their graves.
The isolation we feel exhaustively, all by ourselves, ripens there.
So there are parallels to the real world. Severe Depression, which is just a hop, skip and jump away from Death, actually spikes exponentially there.
The Human Spirit is crushed, until we finally, breath by breath, disappear. This, my friend, is where you go to watch yourself become one of The Invisibles.
Now when you are on the outside, you have some wiggle room. You may choose to remove yourself from the Kingdom of Ignorance, if only for a breath of fresh air, and focus on the brightness of the Human Spirit.
We have choices.
Smell the fragrance of a lovely flower.
Listen to music.
There we have no choices. We are at the mercy of Stupidity, Ignorance and Fools, and we have nowhere to go, locked between two nightmares.
There is this clearly defined and unshakeable and raw feeling that they do not care.
Then again, if you wanna but haven’t yet experienced depersonalization, it’s available there. Think of it as a lean, introductory course on the subject. And since I am naturally an optimist, I feel compelled to plug the positive spin here.
First, your empathy and understanding have grown for those who do experience such devastating psychological symptoms.
This accidental slip, for example, allows you to drift into unknown territory altogether, as you wonder if you really did, in fact, erase your memory of an entire day of your existence, because someone is insisting you did – when you didn’t.
Luckily, there are other patients there who know that you didn’t – just as you had thought. And they are now your salvation.
But this additional drop of uncertainty and confusion has now bloomed in your head.
Shit happens, right?
Be forewarned, however, any heroic attempt to battle the trolls and the slugs just makes you crazier. Totally not worth it.
They follow whatever code they’ve culled and pinned to you from the Diagnostic Statistic Manual, and we all know how that keeps expanding with each new edition.
But that’s exactly when the epiphany occurs …
I had never truly understood what I Am Not My Diagnosis meant until I realized that that is all you are there – a code.
Hey! Look at me. I’m still here.
Sadly, they do not hear or see you. You have disappeared.
So when the object of hospitalization is to support and help you shed the nasty symptoms of Depression, and instead you are fighting to be seen and heard – those are the exact type of challenges we do not need.
The salt on the wound is the absolute isolation from the actual world. This is the abyss. Isolation is not good. They keep preaching that. And then that’s exactly what they do.
So what do you do?
Well, trying to pry open their eyes is futile. They get really, really pissed at you. And that makes them more sinister and deadly, while they sharpen their ignorance from unbelievable heights, as you are fighting for your sanity …
You are too fucking busy to be worrying about Suicide. So in that sense they have met their goal. You have shifted from suicidal ideation to absolute self-preservation. Plus, Existentialism is the only dish on the menu.
Reminds me of a poem by Stevie Smith. An attempt to communicate with those on shore, while being swallowed by the sea …
“Not waving. But drowning.”