Renewed Psychedelic Drug Research is a Bad “Trip” for Mental Health

psychiatric drugs

Current research into psychedelic drugs in the treatment of mental disorders is heading in a dangerous “Brave New World” direction. With a history of psychiatric-intelligence abuse, the drugs should have no role in treating Americans today, watchdog says.


Citizens Commission on Human Rights International

Current research into psychedelic drugs in the treatment of mental disorders is heading in a dangerous “Brave New World” direction

Whether given in a clinical setting or abused, the drugs can have harmful outcomes and, arguably, have no use in the mental health field.”

— CCHR International

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, February 4, 2020 / — A psychiatric drugs side effects online database may soon add hallucinogenic drugs to warn consumers of the drugs’ mind-manipulative history and risk of inducing violent and psychotic behavior. The mental health industry watchdog group, Citizens Commission on Human Rights International’s (CCHR) online side effects database already contains hundreds of psychotropic drugs that have amassed over 400,000 adverse effects reported to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), yet one-in-four Americans, including 7.2 children, are still taking them.[1]

CCHR says that even if psychedelic drugs are administered to consenting subjects, such research demonstrates a fundamental disregard for human life because of the drugs’ mind-altering properties, born out by the psychiatric-intelligence community’s past research of LSD, psilocybin (magic mushroom) and amphetamines.

Despite the risks of LSD, the FDA has now granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to a Europe-based company for its psilocybin therapy for “treatment-resistant depression.”[2] The company is running a 216-patient clinical trial and has made enough synthetic doses of the psychoactive ingredient in magic mushrooms to supply more than 30,000 patients.[3]

The European company has raised $58 million in venture funding, including from Thomas Insel, former Director of The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), who, along with Paul Summergrad, former head of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), sits on the company’s board of advisers.[4]

The FDA, National Institutes of Health and the Defense Department’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) also support research into psychedelic drugs.[5]

Harvard University boasts a Harvard Science of Psychedelics Club.[6] In the 1950s Harvard received substantial funds from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) for mind-control experiments using LSD.[7] NIMH also received CIA funding in the 60s.[8]

The research into LSD and amphetamines as documented by Tom O’ Neill in Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties should begs questions about hallucinogenic drug research today. The extensively researched book is based around Charles Manson and the Family who, after many months of LSD use, gruesomely murdered 9-month pregnant actress, Sharon Tate (Valley of the Dolls) and four others in August 1969.[9]

In less than a year of starting to take LSD, “Manson turned a group of peaceful hippies, mainly young women, into savage, unrepentant killers.” Their grisly crimes “have now inspired Quentin Tarantino’s latest movie, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. But little is known about how Manson became Manson,” O’Neill said.[10]

While not excusing the crimes committed, Manson was dropping acid on a daily basis when he lived in Haight-Ashbury in San Francisco from late Spring of 1967 to June 1968.[11] At the time, two researchers had an influence on his life: Roger Smith, his parole officer and Dr. David Smith (not related).[12]

Chaos provides information about their LSD and amphetamine research:

• Roger Smith led a study on amphetamines and their role in the violent behavior of the Haight-Ashbury hippies. NIMH funded this.[13] His Amphetamine Research Project hoped to learn why some people, but not others, became psychotically violent on amphetamines—and to see if this violence could be controlled.[14] It was run out of Smith’s Haight-Ashbury Free Medical Clinic (HAFMC), which Manson and the Family members regularly attended.[15]

• Dr. David Smith injected mice with amphetamines and within 24 hours, “they transformed from docile animals into frantic combatants, fighting one another until they died…The violence was unremitting: Smith described ‘frenzied attacks of unrelenting rage.’”[16]

• Dr. Eugene Schoenfeld, who was involved in the study, said the rats were also injected with LSD in hopes of making them more suggestible before they were given amphetamines.[17]

• Smith wrote that in “people with prepsychotic personalities,” LSD precipitated “a long-term psychological disorder, usually a manic depressive reaction of a schizophrenic process.”[18]

• In 1966, psychiatrist Louis Jolyn (“Jolly”) West was in Haight-Ashbury to study hippies and LSD. In a 1967 psychiatry textbook, West wrote that LSD was known to leave users “unusually susceptible and emotionally labile.” Now deceased, his project was funded by the Foundations Fund for Research in Psychiatry, Inc., a front for the CIA.[19]
CCHR says the facts show LSD and/or amphetamines cause “unrelenting rage,” can trigger “violent behavior,” “frenzied attacks,” “aggressive and assaultive,” behavior and “precipitates mental disorders.” Whether given in a clinical setting or abused, the drugs can have harmful outcomes and, arguably, have no use in the mental health field.

CCHR is the mental health watchdog responsible for more than 180 laws that now protect patients from damaging practices. DONATE to support its work, including the upgrade of CCHR’s Psychiatric Drugs Side Effects online database.


[2] “FDA Gives Stamp of Approval for Clinical Psilocybin Trials,” Psychedelic Times, 13 Nov. 2018,
[3] “Shroom-Therapy Startup Edges Toward FDA Approval: The feds have designated Compass Pathways’ experimental psilocybin treatment for depression a ‘breakthrough therapy,’” Bloomberg Businessweek, 6 Jan. 2020,
[4] Ibid.
[8] Tom O’ Neill, Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties, (Little, Brown & Co. New York, June 2019), pp. 300-301
[11] Op. cit. Tom O’ Neill, pp. 284, 290
[12] Ibid., pp. 285-286
[13] Ibid., p. 300
[14] Ibid., pp. 300-301
[15] Ibid., p. 302
[16] Ibid., pp. 312-313
[17] Ibid., p. 314
[18] Ibid., p. 319

Amber Rauscher
Citizens Commission on Human Rights
+1 323-467-4242
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Source: EIN Presswire