Presidential candidate Marianne Williamson is making headlines, but for all the wrong reasons.
Despite what critics have been calling a stand-out performance in last night’s Democratic debates, old controversial tweets have caused many to rethink their support of the best-selling author.
In the tweets, Williamson expressed her disbelief in medicine and modern science, stating that instead, illnesses such as clinical depression are “an arbitrary diagnosis.” She also previously tweeted that “there was no stigma to depression until it was medicalized.”
These are some of the things Marianne Williamson has tweeted about mental health and antidepressants. She is hideously dangerous. pic.twitter.com/kCwiw3ujxt— Courtney Enlow (@courtenlow) July 31, 2019
In a tweet posted last June, Williamson also expressed her skepticism of antidepressants and the doctors who prescribed them. She then suggested to another user that such prescriptions are linked to the rise in mass shootings in the United States.
“How many public personalities on antidepressants have to hang themselves before the FDA does something, Big Pharma cops to what it knows, and the average person stops falling for this? The tragedies keep compounding. The awakening should begin,” she tweeted.
“Yes, it’s very sad. And to top it off it’s one of the prime causes of mass shootings as well. We all know something’s wrong. Can’t the Right and the Left finally agree on this? They’ll never agree on the guns, but this is something that should unite all of us,” responded @gonegreenstore
“Absolutely. Las Vegas shooter and more…,” Williamson replied.
Absolutely. Las Vegas shooter and more...— Marianne Williamson (@marwilliamson) June 5, 2018
Williamson doubled down on these beliefs in a recent interview with BuzzFeed News’ AM to DM, insinuating to the outlet that antidepressants are overprescribed for what is “normal human despair.”
“The twenties can be very hard. They’re not a mental illness. Divorce can be very difficult, losing a loved one, someone that you know died, someone left in a relationship and you’re heartbroken — that’s very painful, but it’s not a mental illness,” Williamson told the outlet. “You had a professional failure, you lost your job, you went bankrupt. Those things are very difficult, but they’re not a mental illness.”
Since the author’s rise into the public conscience, many have been pointing out her controversial stances against modern medicine, and instances in which Williamson allegedly used to tell gay men with HIV that prayer could cure them.
“She literally told gay men who were HIV positive that they could cure themselves with prayer and visualization, suggesting they should go off of their meds. it’s nice that she’s saying impressive stuff about reparations but let’s not get blinded here,” tweeted writer @justiceaudre
she literally told gay men who were HIV positive that they could cure themselves with prayer and visualization, suggesting they should go off of their meds. it’s nice that she’s saying impressive stuff about reparations but let’s not get blinded here https://t.co/yMJHSKQAQg— justice (@justiceaudre) July 31, 2019
“Marianne Williamson has implied that people who take antidepressants are weak, that you can cure cancer and HIV with love, and that fat people need to pray more. She’s a heinous wind chime of a human and I’m losing a lot of respect for people praising her right now,” tweeted writer Ella Dawson.
Marianne Williamson has implied that people who take antidepressants are weak, that you can cure cancer and HIV with love, and that fat people need to pray more. She’s a heinous wind chime of a human and I’m losing a lot of respect for people praising her right now. #DemDebate— Ella Dawson (@brosandprose) July 31, 2019
Writer Garth Greenwell shared an excerpt of Williamson’s book, A Return to Love, in which she wrote that “AIDS and serious illnesses are physical manifestations of a physical scream.”
Marianne Williamson is a charlatan and a fraud.— Garth Greenwell (@GarthGreenwell) July 31, 2019
AIDS is not caused by psychic screams. pic.twitter.com/plorOdatnw
German Lopez, senior corresponded at Vox, also shared his concerns with Williamson’s ideologies.
“I don’t want to be a downer, but Marianne Williamson is genuinely dangerous and bad. She has said that people should get off their antidepressants and railed against vaccines—ideas that can literally kill people,” he tweeted.
Williamson is a best-selling author who has written numerous “self-help” books, and has been making waves on the campaign trail due to, as what one writer called, her “Santa Fe Aunt energy.”
“OK so Marianne said the right thing about reparations but she also has big Santa Fe Aunt energy + as a person who has been burnt by one too many Santa Fe Aunts I have to say she’s great at a dinner party to rile up dumb men and maybe not great to say, lend your car to,” said writer Rachel Syme in a tweet. “Santa Fe Aunts: amazing for asking about how to heal your broken heart, not amazing when it comes to returning the investment you made in their batik business.”
Santa Fe Aunts: amazing for asking about how to heal your broken heart, not amazing when it comes to returning the investment you made in their batik business— rachel syme (@rachsyme) July 31, 2019
Williamson has yet to comment specifically on the recent tweet controversies but in last night’s debate, she was praised by both Republicans and Democrats for her performance. She topped the Google searches after the debate in nearly every state except Montana, and began trending after she commented on the “dark psychic force” that Donald Trump is “bringing up in this country.”
“The racism, the bigotry, and the entire conversation that we’re having here tonight,” she said during the debates. “If you think any of this wonkiness is going to deal with this dark psychic force of the collectivized hatred that this president is bringing up in this country, then I’m afraid that the Democrats are going to see some very dark days.”
However, her debate performances still might not be enough to sway those who are less in favor of her.
We’ll find out in 2020.