Letters to the Editor

Dr. Richard Gallagher’s belief in demonic possession is delusional

Dr. Richard Gallagher’s recent commentary on his belief in witchcraft and demonic possession (“As a psychiatrist, I diagnose mental illness. Also, I help spot demonic possession,” July 1) seems to give a contemporary confirmation of that old epithet for his vocation — “headshrinker.”

By his own words, he appears to have a delusional disorder.

This is defined by the American Psychiatric Association as “an illness characterized by at least one month of delusions but no other psychotic symptoms.”

Delusions are defined as “false beliefs based on incorrect inference about external reality that persist despite the evidence to the contrary.”

Unfortunately, Dr. Gallagher is someone who has the legal authority to confine other people involuntarily and prescribe very powerful, poorly understood drugs.

Someone is possessed for sure.

Loren Acord, San Luis Obispo

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