A Medal of Honor Recipient Is Speaking Out About Veterans Being 'Over-Prescribed'

Code Red News
CNN/screenshot

There's a serious crisis in America when it comes to opioids. Millions of Americans are addicted to prescription pain relievers, and tens of thousands die from overdoses each year.


But the veteran community leads the way with a sobering statistic: They are two times more likely to overdose than non-veterans.

And beyond the overdose risk, opioids also offer challenges for mental health treatment since, according to VA data, more than 63 percent of veterans receiving prescription medication for chronic pain also have a mental health diagnosis.

That's why Medal of Honor recipient Clint Romesha is lobbying Congress and the Department of Veterans Affairs to look at other options besides the "quick fix" of giving prescriptions to veterans in pain.

"There are so many different options other than just 'fill that prescription,'" Romesha said Thursday in an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper.

Many injuries affect the muscles, according to Romesha, which may be better suited to chiropractic care instead of a magic pill. He specifically mentioned the Patriot Project in Canton, Ohio, which has a goal of offering free chiropractic care to wounded veterans, military members and their families, and Gold Star dependents.

The organization boasts eight Medal of Honor recipients as board members or spokesmen, along with other prominent retired military leaders.

"The culture we had when I was in was, 'Here's pills, get back to work,'" Romesha said, noting that there are other options that should be explored such as chiropractic care or acupuncture. "It's been world changing."

There is one option Romesha didn't mention that's been embraced by some veterans: medical marijuana. The VA issued guidance late last year on its medical marijuana policy, which allowed doctors to discuss (but not prescribe) marijuana with veterans, although the agency still refuses to study its efficacy.

You can watch Romesha's full segment with Tapper at CNN.

Guided-missile destroyer USS Stethem (DDG 63) Sailors participate in a memorial for the shipÕs namesake, Robert D. Stethem. Navy diver, Steelworker 2nd Class Robert Stethem, who was returning from an assignment in the Middle East, when he was taken hostage aboard TWA 847 commercial airliner. The flight was hijacked by terrorists, and Stethem was shot to death after being tortured by the terrorists on June 15, 1985. (U.S. Navy photo by Ensign Danny Ewing Jr.)

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greek police have arrested a 65-year-old Lebanese man suspected of involvement in the 1985 hijacking of a Trans World Airlines (TWA) plane in which a U.S. navy diver was killed.

A Greek police official said on Saturday the suspect had disembarked from a cruise ship on the island of Mykonos on Thursday and that his name came up as being wanted by German authorities.

Read More Show Less

The last time the world saw Marine veteran Austin Tice, he had been taken prisoner by armed men. It was unclear whether his captors were jihadists or allies of Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad who were disguised as Islamic radicals.

Blindfolded and nearly out of breath, Tice spoke in Arabic before breaking into English:"Oh Jesus. Oh Jesus."

That was from a video posted on YouTube on Sept. 26, 2012, several weeks after Tice went missing near Damascus, Syria, while working as a freelance journalist for McClatchy and the Washington Post.

Now that Tice has been held in captivity for more than seven years, reporters who have regular access to President Donald Trump need to start asking him how he is going to bring Tice home.

Read More Show Less

SAN DIEGO — John Timothy Earnest didn't hide his smirks as he sat in a San Diego courtroom on Thursday, watching surveillance video of Lori Gilbert-Kaye being shot down inside the lobby of a Poway synagogue.

Earnest also smiled as a synagogue congregant testified about running toward the shooter, screaming "I'm going to kill you!" and seeing the gunman "with a look of astonishment or fear" turn and run.

Earnest, 20, is facing one count of murder and three counts of attempted murder in the shootings at Chabad of Poway on April 27. He also faces an arson charge related to an Escondido mosque fire in March, when several people who were sleeping inside escaped unharmed.

Read More Show Less

Sometimes a joke just doesn't work.

For example, the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service tweeted and subsequently deleted a Gilbert Gottfried-esque misfire about the "Storm Area 51" movement.

On Friday DVIDSHUB tweeted a picture of a B-2 bomber on the flight line with a formation of airmen in front of it along with the caption: "The last thing #Millenials will see if they attempt the #area51raid today."

Read More Show Less

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey is ready to act on its southern border with Syria, President Tayyip Erdogan said, after warning that it could take unilateral steps if the U.S. does not establish a "safe zone" in northeast Syria this month.

"Our preparations along our borders are complete," Erdogan told reporters in Istanbul on Saturday before departing to attend a U.N. General Assembly meeting.

Read More Show Less