Author, artist, & peace & human rights activist Chuck Falcon has appeared on TV and radio shows across the country, including syndicated networks with hundreds of stations and millions of listeners.
Author Interview Below
Author Chuck Falcon graduated from the University of Florida with a Master of Counseling Psychology degree in 1985. Next, he devoted his life to researching and writing a self-help psychology book.
He has never worked as a psychologist, yet national and international psychology organizations rave about his book, even though it fiercely criticizes the profession of psychology.
The National Mental Health Association (now Mental Health America) called it “enlightened and comprehensive,” with “terrific understanding, compassion, and clinical knowledge.”
The Journal of Contemporary Psychotherapy described it as “immensely beneficial … shows how to parent more effectively … with utmost sensitivity and know-how … a tribute to the field of psychology.”
The International Academy of Behavioral Medicine, Counseling, and Psychotherapy called it “remarkable … practical and useful … designed to be used by the lay person but a useful guide for the practicing clinician.”
The book sold to 3 book clubs (Behavioral Science Book Service, Nurses’ Book Club, and Executive Program Book Club) and led to TV appearances and radio shows across the country.
It sold mostly to libraries and also sold both Russian and Chinese translation rights, selling out in both countries and reprinting.
Falcon has worked in several psychiatric hospitals, addiction programs, and a school for intellectually and developmentally disabled children.
He has worked with veterans with PTSD, survivors of abuse and rape, incest abusers, and adult, deaf, teenage, and child psychiatric inpatients and outpatients.
He has volunteered with autistic children, psychiatric inpatients, and a drug crisis center. He taught some courses in communications disorders for Delgado Community College in New Orleans.
His parents were both deaf and he has taught sign language courses. He has survived abuse and two kinds of cancer and he often volunteers with severely abused people. His own abuse history resulted in years of nightmares and ongoing throat spasms and vomiting.
Working part time as a sign language interpreter is a flexible job that allowed him to research his book in many libraries across the US and travel to promote his book. But devoting his life to his dreams meant for half his career, he only made $8 an hour.
Falcon also devoted his life to taking care of his parents when they got sick. His father had a stroke during back surgery and became paralyzed. The doctor shouldn’t have done the surgery because of his father’s history of minor strokes but the family never sued.
His mother had Alzheimer’s disease. Chuck took care of his parents until they both died, working only part time and taking no long jobs, so neither of them ever had to go to a nursing home. This stopped Falcon from traveling to promote his psychology book.
For the past 15 years, including that time, Falcon has worked on his new book on progressive politics Rich & Peaceful, progressive art shirts to change the world, and artwork for crowd funding to promote his ideas.
His activism started as far back as high school. When a violent incident caused tense relations between whites and blacks again in a high school torn with racial conflicts, the police had to again maintain a presence in the school.
Chuck was a new senior there, transferred from the local Catholic high school. A really cool girl came up to Falcon at lunch and said, “Let’s be the first ones to sit with blacks.” And so they did, forming what they called the “peace and good will” table.
Once, after volunteering for many months with a child who had been beaten and sexually abused in the dorms at the state residential school for the deaf in Louisiana, Falcon testified in court for the child. After working with other victims from the same school, he gave a TV interview to a reporter investigating sexual abuse there.
The superintendent of the school furiously screamed at him, ordering him to never set foot on the school property again, but publicly commissioned a study of other state’s systems for improving personal safety in the dorms.
Falcon wants to help Americans use our political system to win free health care and college. He believes simply living up to our talk about human rights can bring world peace.
A dreamer in the tradition of John Lennon, Falcon wants everyone to understand providing basic needs (clean water, food, medicines) is far, far cheaper and far more effective than war. This is a vision of justice, peace, and prosperity that should bring together people of good will everywhere.
How long did it take for you to write Rich & Peaceful?
“About 15 years. I used to be fascinated by compiling the most practical tidbits of counseling information in psychology. Then I became fascinated with our foreign policy and human rights. I’ve always been a peace activist, all the way back to the Vietnam war, but I became obsessed with the money our country wastes destructively and what it could do for us and the world.
I read news online and in magazines for a few hours every day to keep up with the latest. I’m constantly picking out new ideas, statistics, slants, or arguments to update my work. I really just pull together other people’s work, zero in on the most practical information, and summarize it.”
Do you have any reviews for your new book Rich & Peaceful?
“Not yet. I haven’t even started submitting it anywhere yet. First, I’ll be making videos of my petitions to submit for local public access cable TV stations across the country. Then I’ll be working on submitting my book for reviews. These things take time and I stay pretty busy working, so it will be a while.”
Can parents teach babies to cry less?
“Sure. One very simple way is to use one of those pouches with straps for carrying babies on your back or chest while you do chores, run errands, or visit people. One study found carrying babies only two more hours each day reduced crying and fussing by 43%. This also helps a new mother lose weight and the close contact means quicker diaper changes and less trouble with rashes. Another easy way is to check on your baby regularly and touch it, say a few words, play, change, or feed it. This teaches the baby that it doesn’t need to cry to get its needs met. My psychology book describes many ways to reduce infant crying and also how to differentiate between normal crying and crying that suggests a serious physical problem.”
Nowadays, young children face great pressures to have sex early. How can parents help their children deal with this kind of peer pressure?
“The most effective way is practicing saying no with behavioral roleplays. Make up situations where dates are pressuring them (“If you really loved me, you would do it.”) and ask them to respond. Create a variety of pressuring statements–about how all the cool people have sex, ridicule about being afraid or a baby, arguments you’re uptight and sex will really relax you, promises to marry or provide for the baby, complaints about severe physical needs, and threats or hints about ending the relationship.
Make sure your child develops and practices many good responses about self-respect, unwanted pregnancy, sexual diseases, and life goals. Teach your child to be assertive, to keep repeating no, to complain about the pressure, to describe how the pressure makes them feel about the relationship, and to refuse to discuss it further. Point out that many girls who have sex to keep a boyfriend end up losing him anyway and feeling extremely hurt and used.”
People think of meditation and deep relaxation techniques such as using mantras and deep rhythmical breathing as ancient Oriental traditions, only recently imported to the Western world. That’s not really true, is it?
“For centuries, early Christians often said the name “Jesus” repeatedly as a prayer or meditation or mantra. They often used rhythmic breathing with this and with other prayers, like the Lord’s Prayer. Of course, Abraham and Jesus often went into the desert or mountains to meditate or pray alone.”
“I love to cook, love artwork, and I enjoy doing home renovations. I’m a nut for astronomy, archaeology, different cultures and lifestyles, and those wacky physics shows about multiverses and extra dimensions. It’s mind-boggling that gravity might be nothing but heat. It’s amazing that one tribe builds their houses hundreds of feet up in the air in trees with no walls and the dogs and babies just learn not to fall off the edge. I’m fascinated by anything about cavemen and the earliest Christians, too.”