While I agree that many of us are extremely spoiled because we have our basic needs met, many do not. Many are struggling to obtain decent housing, clothing, food, and basic commodities like diapers. In many parts of the world people are displaced by war or by natural disasters or plagues.
Now for the rest of us, including many of my readers here, we have the roof over our heads, we have clothing and basic food to eat. I agree that the peripheral needs, the ones that go beyond basic, are less important and shouldn’t be marketed as they are.
However, there’s one flaw to the article, the assumption that psychiatry and counseling meet a basic need. I don’t see these practices as having much of a role where you have people starving or homeless. How can a homeless person benefit from counseling, and why would he/she waste time and money that way?
They only type of counseling, or remotely close to that, that a homeless person might benefit from might be to get a donated haircut or to be able to go to a clothes closet to get nice clothes to be presentable to a landlord. Real estate brokers, if they don’t charge, would also be a great help. None of these are mental health counselors, because MH is irrelevant when you are desperate for a place to call home. Even a donated manicure, trivial as it is, will help a person make a good impression on a future landlord, and would be far more useful than a paid fake friend.
Psychiatry is also useless. Who wants to go apartment-hunting while feeling antsy or having the urge to pace? Who wants to have shaky hands while trying to sign paperwork? Or show up supervised because your court-appointed guardian (that the psych institution insists on) has to go along for the ride?
And so on.