This sort of talk breaks my heart. I’m a medical student at Harvard in my final year. I’ll soon be deciding on a specialty. I’ve been more or less at the top of my class here; I’ve worked hard to keep my options open. I went to medical school because I wanted to work with the homeless and tormented, and those I see as least fortunate among us. I’m fascinated by the intersection of the brain and the culture in which we live, so I’ve liked the idea of doing psychiatry quite a bit. I’ve seen psychiatric treatments have dramatic effects in turning around people’s behavior and attitudes almost overnight, and I like being able to take the time to speak with my patients (rather than just “treat-and-street” them as is the unfortunate case in many other fields). I come across comments like this, and it just makes me sad to think that despite all the time and hard work I’ve put in (and believe me, it’s a lot of work), I’ll just be thought of as a greedy quack by so many in society. It’s ironic, actually, that you feel the way you do about psychiatrist incomes, since I’d give up a massive amount of expendable income if I choose psychiatry relatively to almost any other specialty, including primary care (since our healthcare system reimburses for procedures, which psychiatrists don’t do). All I want is to be able to build relationships with people who struggle with addictions, disorganized or disturbed thinking, and emotions that get in the way of living the kind of life they want to live. It’s sad to see that if I choose to enter a field where I think I might be able to do that well, there are people who will automatically think of me as evil.