Tuesday, February 04, 2014
Death By Overdose
I just re-read the first paragraph and realized that it reads harsh and maybe a tad cold. I thought about trying to tip toe my way into this post about drug addiction, and realized that Reality suits my mood better than hand wringing platitudes. Drug and alcohol abuse are ugly realities of the human existence.
I know of what I speak because I was a drug addict for a time back in the day. I abused alcohol for a period also. I sit here now at age 62 contemplating the bad boy shit I pulled and all I can think of is "What the Hell was I thinking?" I sit here at age 62 and know that if someone were to offer me some toot, some smack, I might just cave. Nothing feels like good drugs. Sex feels as good, but it is a different good.
Phillip Seymour Hoffman died with a needle in his arm. I understand he had been clean for over twenty years. I wonder if an old drug buddy caught him in a weak moment and got him going again. I know that is my fear and the one reason I make no effort to contact the people I did drugs with back in the day. And even though it has been over 35 years since I did any hard drugs, I know myself pretty well by now and it would not take much for me to cave to the rush.
What pisses me off about drugs, alcohol and tobacco is that our society seems to think one is worse than the others. Our laws allow the use and sale of two of the biggest causes of death, yet the law considers drugs to be the ultimate evil. And death from drugs is but a blip on the "why people die chart" compared to Alcohol and Tobacco. This hypocritical attitude in my opinion is a main contributor to the scoff law mentality that has saturated our culture.
Suddenly with the death of a celebrity and the rise in OD's from Heroin, panties are getting bunched all over. Get a grip. We cannot keep people from what they want. Chasing the Dragon will always be with us. We have proven that we cannot legislate it away. Incarceration does not help. Maybe it is time to assess some of the European efforts to deal with drugs. Rather than punish an addict, many countries put the money previously wasted on trials and jail to different methods like counseling, clean needles, and in some cases, clean drugs. Often providing drugs of a known quality will cut down on the petty crime associated with drug use. I only mention the notion we should look to alternatives than continuing the same failed polices we have been using for as long as I can remember. It is another wake up call people, don't let our leaders punch up the snooze button.