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Social Isolation - The Key to Understanding Substance Disabilities

Dear Michael,

I am responding to your organizations contact from Margaret's Housing and Community Support Services, "to see if you are interested in receiving any Mental Health and Justice support during this time?"

Thank you for taking the time to speak with me this afternoon in this regard.

You will notice a number of stakeholders have been cc'd on this communication including Paul J James supporters. I have included them not to embarrass you or your organization but rather to document and protect the truthfulness of the Paul J James matter from being scapegoated and/or manipulated into the future most specifically in this case by the Toronto Star who have facilitated your organizations inquiry.

I appreciate Michael your professionalism in how you dealt with the call and the unique information you received which is layered and unnecessarily complicated. Over a period of a decade York University and an ever increasing number of collaborators have obstructed justice being served on a social mental health phenomenon of such importance and magnitude.

In short, I do not need any mental health assistance or addiction support. What is required is the delivery of social justice which has not only be denied, it has been unlawfully and immorally added to.

In reference to your comment that I am isolated and it is of concern to you and others. I appreciate the thoughts. However they are incomplete.

Of course I am socially isolated.

But not as isolated as I was prior to the hunger strike protests back in November 2016. Just the list of persons copied here plus 1.5 million website, YouTube views and the fact I have participated in more soccer coaching assignments since January 2017 than the previous 7 years combined is indicative of the juggernaut of stigma but also the decision to confront the social phenomenon head on.

You referenced vague familiarity with Dr Bruce Alexander's unparalleled work on Rat Park. For the benefit of other readers to this correspondence highlighted below is the hub of why delivery of social justice in the Paul J James matter is so important. It defines what it is to be socially isolated. What it means on a human level. And how unlawful discrimination facilitates it.


Rat in Cage. Two levers.

Lever ONE if pressed emits water laced with nutrients.

Lever TWO if pressed emits water laced with heroin or cocaine.

One week in cage. Rat dependent on heroin/cocaine.

Two weeks in cage. Rat dead.

Second Rat. One week in isolated cage. Rat dependent on heroin/cocaine.

Take Rat out of cage.

Put rat in Rat Park full of other rats. Food. Play things. All needs taken care of.

Same two levers. Rat no longer presses lever two. No longer dependent on cocaine heroin.

(Canadian Dr. Bruce Alexander SFU 1982)

While it is over simplified the conclusions are incontestable and consistent time after time. Addiction to a substance is not predominantly because of the "chemical hooks" of the substance but overwhelmingly because of social isolation influenced by a persons cultural environment.

Through appalling bad politics Dr Bruce Alexanders findings and discoveries were suppressed and prevented from further research. Over the decades however the straight forward findings have been found to be profoundly applicable to human beings with transferable limitations however, as Rats, for example, do not have to apply for Jobs.

I digress to the following good natured quote which encapsulates what it is to be or not to be socially isolated on a human level. A philosopher once said man needs three basic things to live a fulfilled life. A decent job of work. A partner to love. And to know you are making a difference. David Brent (Ricky Gervais The Office).

To know you are making a difference can only be achieved in a career or calling you are passionate about. In addition when you consider employment is the number one social determinant of good health for ALL citizens it solidifies the devastating consequences of losing a career and passion in ones life because of discrimination. Fuelled by Stigma which Rats do not experience.

And so Michael, look at the circumstances of Paul J James. Google the name. Read the Toronto Star, CBC and National Post articles. Then with consideration I am living on the street with nothing because of incremental oppression and tell me how a counsellor can solve those elements. York University and others including the Toronto Star have deliberately ruined a soccer career and life. Yet they are still facilitating such unrelenting scapegoating actions and abuse including the slyness behind your organizations contact. Not you yourself but the bad politics behind the scenes.

If you review the following link Michael it will highlight the work on confronting the stigma of drug addiction which has been completed over the past 28 months.

Again, I appreciate your professionalism and the dignity and resoect you afforded to me today.

Hopefully now you have a greater appreciation of why I will embark on a 250 mile walk to Ottawa without eating and with great enthusiasm to bring this matter to an end.

Paul J James

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