Dear Dr. McDonald,

Before I go further, I want to begin this message with a huge, loud, and resounding THANK YOU! I just finished your book, United States of Fear, and it was as if I was reading my own thoughts published in a wonderfully organized and eloquent manner. Several years ago, prior to the pandemic, I had renounced social and traditional media, and, honestly, any media outside intelligent informational podcasts and books, usually produced by historians, psychologists, philosophers, comedians, and medical professionals who exercised their First Amendment right by publishing their honest observations of the current American culture despite being contrary to the popular narrative.

I apologize for my lack of familiarity with you or your mission of information distribution during the peak pandemic times. I am one of those who sit proudly in your corner, although I felt isolated and stifled by the surrounding insanity. It's strange to think that those of us who utilized rational common sense and exercised the most basic of observational skills inherent in our species are the "black sheep" of our contemporary culture. I sure am glad Amazon is doing its part by offering an unbiased algorithm where your book was brought to my attention and bookshelf. My name is Aeon. It is a pleasure to digi-meet you.

I can speak for hours on my thoughts and feelings about the pandemic of fear: how I observed its beginnings; the obvious illogical hysteria; the countless arguments I got into regarding masks, vaccines, sheltering in place, social distancing, shutting down the global economy, etc. But that seems like a waste your time to put into this email. You were there. You know what it was like. #solidarity.

After the first month of ridiculousness (I believe it was the absurd stimulus check situation that broke me first.), I decided to move out of Los Angeles, the only home I had ever known, and head to a new city for a new perspective. I read about the absolute idiocy that is Oregonian politics and decided to move to Portland to observe the wildlife in real time. Like Darwin, I really should have kept a journal since moving up here. The people here are out of their mind. It's truly an interesting phenomenon. Again, I will spare details, as I am sure you're familiar with the news of these past two years. As you might have guessed from my language, I do not fit in here. But it is a grand place to observe the human subspecies of WealthyWhiteGuiltLiberalism. Witnessing the chaos of the logic apocalypse, I decided to apply to graduate school, because our country is just handing out money these days, and clearly debt is a construct, as well as gender and sex and race and ideas and thinking and hugs and language, so why not contribute to the industrialized educational system? Our culture is in serious trouble, and I, like you, am determined to be a force for rationality and positive mental health. I'll be back in the City of Angels soon enough. I, like you, am not a fan of our modern educational system (or medical system), but I decided the only way to change it is to go through it.

As a future clinician, I believe it is paramount to educate myself outside the formal--and, dare I say, overpriced--institution, and I am often surprised by how many of my cohort-mates have not read a single psychology book outside the assigned curriculum. To consider so many graduate degrees are awarded, and so many people are set free to operate as psychotherapists without the slightest idea how reality operates, is a bit worrisome. I see that as potentially doing more harm than good. Also, most of my cohort are female. Some, as has been made clear from classroom discussions and presentations, are the very hysterical Karens you so vividly described in your book. These are the next generation of therapists? How can they help others, when they cannot help themselves? It's the traumatized counseling the traumatized.

Anyway, thank you again for taking the time to write a book, talk to communities, and inform the public of the truth. You're doing great work, and it is appreciated. I am glad to know that there are people in the mental health field with whom I can pledge my alliance and allegiance. I am in your corner and looking forward to your new online platform. I hope to be a part of it one day.

In awesomeness,
Aeon Black

Future Psychotherapist to
Generation Bewilderment

Mark McDonald, M.D.
Psychiatrist and author of United States of Fear: How America Fell Victim to a Mass Delusional Psychosis