Nick Kristof is wrong about Backpage (and other things too)

Nick Kristof is at it again. On Sunday, the New York Times columnist wrote yet another column about sex trafficking that was filled with inaccuracies and misleading statements. He was writing about a new lawsuit filed by two young women who say they were trafficked as teen prostitutes through ads that appeared on the online […]

My upcoming book on sex work and the law

For the past four years, I have been working on a new book that is a departure from my previous book, Side Effects.  Tentatively titled Getting Screwed: Sex Work and the Law, the new book weaves the true stories of sex workers (past and present) together with the latest research to make what I hope […]

A review of two new books that attack the DSM-5, psychiatry’s “bible”

I reviewed two books now circulating about the DSM and the current controversy over the DSM-5 for The American Scholar — see review here. The two books are The Book of Woe: The DSM and the Unmaking of Psychiatry by Gary Greenberg, and Saving Normal: An Insider’s Revolt Against Out-of-Control Psychiatric Diagnosis, DSM-5, Big Pharma, and the […]

Plot twists in Soderbergh’s new movie Side Effects strain belief

I went to see Steven Soderbergh’s new film, Side Effects, with anticipation and dread. The movie, after all, carries the same name as my 2008 book, Side Effects and from what I could tell of the trailers, its plot seemed loosely based on the issue I explore in my book: the sometimes dangerous effects of […]

One solution to prescription drug overdoses: make Oyxcontin and similar drugs safer

In my previous blogs about West Virginia’s shockingly high rate of prescription drug overdoses — the Mountain State has the second highest rate of overdoses in the nation — I focused on “the culture of disability” that created this problem and what should be done to curb the over-prescribing of addictive painkillers by doctors — […]

West Virginia’s prescription drug problem: a gift from the coal mining industry?

Ever heard of the term “culture of disability?” It was first coined by Judith Greenwood, who published a paper in the ’80s about how the coal mining industry in West Virginia, because the jobs were so difficult and dangerous, had created a culture where injured or unemployed miners endeavored to get a diagnosis that would […]

Falsely inflated statistics about sex trafficking in the U.S. make bad policy and laws

Wasn’t it Mark Twain who said that a lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes? I thought of his famous quote when my husband passed along a link he had received (from a social work listserv he subscribes to) to a trailer for a slick documentary […]

Why West Virginia has second highest rate of prescription drug overdoses in the nation

Did you know that West Virginia has the second highest rate of deaths from prescription drug overdoses in the country? I didn’t, until I moved to the Mountain State to live and work and became curious as to what was behind this tragic statistic. According to a recent CDC report, drug overdoses now kill more […]

Martin Keller, principal investigator of Paxil study 329, retires from Brown University

I just learned that Dr. Martin Keller, principal investigator of the controversial Paxil study 329, has retired from his position as a professor of psychiatry at Brown University — see here. As Pharmalot notes, Keller quietly retired June 30 in the midst of an ongoing campaign to have the Journal of the American Academy of Child […]

Calls for action against authors of controversial Paxil study are getting louder

In the wake of GlaxoSmithKline’s record-breaking $3 billion settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice, a number of psychiatrists and researchers have redoubled their efforts to get Paxil study 329 retracted. As mentioned here and in other news accounts, the federal prosecutors who won the recent settlement concluded that study 329 constituted scientific fraud, as I […]