I don’t remember hearing a whole lot about PTSD until more recent conflicts. Now, it’s about all you hear when veterans are talked about in public forums. Every soldier that returns from active combat is pretty much assumed to have PTSD. It’s the explanation for rising suicide rates in the military and for the severe epidemic of low morale and depression that sweeps through every branch of the armed forces.
No one thinks for a moment that maybe the fix for PTSD is a different foreign policy. I doubt there would be anywhere near as much PTSD if we just withdrew our military from unnecessary military conflicts. No. No. Let’s not do that. Instead, let’s just develop a drug that soldiers can take so that they can fight and kill potential terrorists (read: foreign—soon to be domestic!—citizens trying to protect their homeland) without any chance of stress, fear, or depression.
That’s just what researchers at MIT are working on at this very moment. They believe that a hormone your stomach produces (called ghrelin), which exists in higher quantities during times of high stress or potential danger, might be the cause of PTSD. They think blocking ghrelin receptors would allow people to have clear memories of traumatic events without feeling any of the stress or fear involved. In other words, they are researching a way to create inhuman killers without guilt, fear, or remorse. This is, after all, so much easier than pursuing a peaceful, non-interventionist, diplomatic foreign policy.
This is like an obese person becoming a serial liposuction patient rather than changing his diet. The problem is not the weight itself. The problem that needs to be dealt with is the over-eating and lack of exercise. Similarly, dealing with PTSD as the problem in itself will not have good results. Who knows what kind of drugs they will come up with, and what those drugs will do to America once they (inevitably) hit the streets. I shudder to think.