August 20, 2014. Napa Valley, CA. (ONN) The list of Hollywood celebrities that have accidentally died because of the side effects of their pharmaceutical medications is too long to include here. Names like Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Heath Ledger and Brittany Murphy quickly come to mind. Two days ago, well known comedian Rob Schneider publicly blamed the prescribed drugs Robin Williams was taking for his sudden and tragic suicide last week.
Comedian Rob Schneider says Big Pharma killed his longtime friend and fellow comedian Robin Williams. Image courtesy of NewsFiber.com.
Rob Schneider and Robin Williams were longtime, good friends. They met on the set of Saturday Night Live roughly 20 years ago when Schneider was a popular cast member and Williams was hosting the show. They’ve been good friends ever since.
Schneider lays blame on Big Pharma
For decades, Robin Williams has been battling a number of afflictions, including depression, drug addiction and alcoholism. Proving just how close the two comedians were, after Robin Williams’ suicide a little more than a week ago, Schneider was one of the first to confirm publicly that Williams was not only suffering from Parkinson’s Disease, but he had also started taking controversial medications with suicide warnings to treat it.
Schneider took to Twitter shortly after Williams’ death, pointing the finger for the fatal tragedy squarely at the country’s Big Pharma corporations. “Now that we can talk about it, #RobinWilliams was on a drug treating the symptoms of Parkinson’s,” he wrote, “One of the SIDE-EFFECTS IS SUICIDE!” A follow-up Tweet from Schneider continued, “The Evil pharmaceutical industry ADMITS TO OVER 100,000 people in the USA DIE A YEAR FROM ‘PRESCRIPTION’ DRUGS!! #RobinWilliams.”
Supporters of Big Pharma quickly tried to deflect the accusation, suggesting that Robin Williams may have died from mixing his doctor-prescribed drugs with illegal drugs or even alcohol. His wife Susan immediately jumped to her husband’s defense Tweeting, “Robin's sobriety was intact. And he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety, as well as early stages of Parkinson's Disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly.”
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Exactly one week after Robin Williams’ death by suicide on August 11, longtime friend Rob Schneider posted his final Tweet on the subject, and left any reference to Big Pharma out, “We are only allowed to mourn for 7 days so…Just thank and hug the ones you love and who have touched your lives! Thx4ever #RobinWilliams.”
Big Pharma goes on offensive
It didn’t take long for Wall Street’s pharmaceutical corporations to enlist their high priced advertising and PR agencies to go after Rob Schneider for his accusatory Tweets. The pharma giants also enlisted some of their highest paid news companies to inform the American people that prescription drugs had nothing to do with the suicide of Robin Williams.
ABC News came out swinging yesterday, nearly taking off Rob Schneider’s proverbial head in the process. The corporation’s derogatory headline sets the agenda right from the start announcing, ‘Experts blast Rob Schneider’s Parkinson’s Drug Twitter Rant.’ Apparently, that wasn’t damning enough. So ABC News quietly changed the headline to, ‘Doctors blast Rob Schneider’s Parkinson’s Drug Twitter Rant.’
Who should we believe?
Consider these facts when listening to people debate the safety and suicidal risks of so many Big Pharma drugs these days. Nobody paid comedian Rob Schneider a single cent to say what he did about the 100,000 preventable deaths caused by prescription drugs in America and their link to suicides. Like other celebrities such as Jenny McCarthy, Kristin Cavallari, Jim Carey and even Oprah before him, Rob Schneider simply said what he truly believes - pharmaceutical drugs are murdering more Americans every year on accident than any other cause, including car accidents and firearms.
Now look at who’s on the other side of the prescription drug debate. America’s broadcast media networks like ABC News that immediately jumped to Big Pharma’s defense were paid a combined $27 billion in 2012 by the very same pharmaceutical corporations. The allegedly impartial “doctors” the corporate news outlets like to hold up as unbiased experts were themselves showered with a combined $24 billion in ‘promotional’ spending by pharmaceutical corporations in 2012.
Lies and propaganda, but not from Rob Schneider
Showing how determined Big Pharma is to distance themselves from Robin Williams’ violent suicide, they enlisted no less than Good Morning America to defend the world’s pharmaceutical corporations. GMA is a property of ABC News, which is a property of ABC, which is owned by The Walt Disney Company - one of the largest recipients of Big Pharma money each year.
GMA quickly blasted comedian Rob Schneider yesterday writing, ‘Parkinson's disease experts say Schneider is out of line.’ The corporation’s hand-picked expert was Dr. Irene Richard, a professor of neurology and psychiatry at the University of Rochester and an adviser to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research. She told Good Morning America, “Suicide is of no more concern in patients with Parkinson’s versus those who don’t have Parkinson’s.” Notice Rob Schneider never said Robin Williams’ suicide was caused by his Parkinson’s Disease, like the doctor attempted to refute. Instead, Schneider blamed Williams’ suicide on the prescription drugs he was taking.
ABC News followed that by referencing an outdated 2001 study and reporting, ‘In fact, a 2001 Howard University study found that people with Parkinson’s are ten times less likely to commit suicide than the average person.’ Flash forward eight years to a 2009 study publicized by The Parkinson Hub, a support group made up of Parkinson’s victims, their families and their doctors. The report concluded, ‘Suicide is Five Times More Likely in Parkinson’s Disease.’
Further down in the very same ABC News/Good Morning America report, the network contradicts its own hand-picked expert writing, ‘However, some Parkinson’s drugs do list an increased risk of suicide as a possible side effect. The US Food and Drug Administration warns that patients taking either levodopa or SINEMET, two drugs commonly used to treat Parkinson's, “should be observed carefully for the development of depression with concomitant suicidal tendencies.”’