posted on Mar, 20 2018 @ 04:09 AM
I have watched this issue for the last few days, listening to differing opinions, considering the effects both short-term and long-term, and
considering what I personally know about drug use. I think I'm ready to choose a side.
Trump is wrong this time.
As I understand it, capital punishment is already available for kingpins, but the legal requirements are so steep it is almost never pursued. That is,
really, how it should be. While I support capital punishment, I only support it when there is no question as to guilt. That means it should present a
very steep legal challenge to pursue.
The problem isn't the same as what I grew up with in the 70s. Back then you had the liberal (truly liberal, before pundits changed the meaning)
hippies, who were essentially three bricks shy of a load IMO, but who never tried to harm anyone. The drug war was in response to them, because they
did tend to make a mess wherever they went and their big thing was drug use. Back in my day, you had a whole bunch of small-time dealers, a few big
time dealers, and a lot of users. The big thing was marijuana, which is as harmless (maybe more so) than alcohol.
Today, it's not the dealers that are the problem... it's the cartels and the pharmaceuticals. Pharmaceuticals are constantly wining and dining doctors
to push their drugs onto patients, even going as far as to advertise prescription drugs on TV. You sit around watching all these commercials telling
you 24/7 that this little pill will solve all your problems, it's likely that you will come to believe it. So when there's a little hurt, find a pill
to make it all better.
But opiods don't make it all better.
I just recently lost my mother to a 30-year battle with schleroderma. Her last years were pretty rough, at one point requiring her to get a feeding
tube. She was suffering from a side effect of the schleroderma: esophageal dysphagia. In simple English, she could not swallow. Anything she tried to
swallow just went straight into her lungs. Shortly after she got the tube, the doctor put her on liquid iron and the hospice nurse was adamant about
making sure she got her Norco. Now, I was adamant that she had Norco available, but I had also been cautious about only giving it to her when she
needed it. But now, the regular doses of Norco three times a day, combined with the iron, set up OIC and caused her to throw up... which was an
emergency trip to the hospital to try and clear her lungs out.
A friend of mine's father died some years back of bone cancer. I'm told it is the most painful type to have. I know he laid screaming in agony for
hours on end at times. He needed opiates, and thankfully his son, my friend, made sure he got them.
Point being, opiates are not evil. What the problem is, is in how we use them. Taken for a terminal illness to ease suffering, they are a Godsend.
Taken in moderation to make life a little easier in one's elder years, they are a Godsend. Taken regularly for minor discomfort, they are a dangerous
crutch that can turn a normal person into a drug addict. Thus, the decision to or not to prescribe falls upon those closest to the patient: family and
doctors. And the doctors only know what the patients and their families tell him.
What would you expect someone hooked on painkillers to say to get more?
So it is a problem with society, not just a problem with pushers. They are filling a demand that exists only because doctors will over-prescribe on
request, then shut someone off with no thought to the addiction already in place. While it may well be true that illegal dealers assist thousands of
deaths a year, it is also true that they are not the lone assistants. The pharmaceuticals advertising their poison on TV as some sort of snake-oil
sure-all, the doctors who either don't know or don't care about the effects of addiction, and a society who cares only for short-term relief over
long-term health, are all responsible. That's not to state there should not be stiff penalties for drug dealers; there should. Some drug dealers are
indeed spreading pain and misery for profit. It just means they are not the only problem and should not be subjected to something as severe as capital
The best way to start combating this is to tightly regulate how pharmaceutical salesmen can interact with doctors and make it illegal to advertise any
substance which requires official permission to use on TV.
Of course, another issue is poor quality medications imported from cartels... fixing the border will solve most of that issue.
Stopping the "war on drugs" is another giant step in the right direction. There are a few illicit drugs, like crystal meth, that need to be strictly
outlawed. Those who produce them typically flush the hazardous chemicals used down the drain, contaminating groundwater for miles around. Crystal meth
also destroys the body, killing a user slowly and painfully, and has no legitimate medical use. That should be strictly illegal under any
circumstances, while marijuana should be legalized and controlled similar to alcohol.
Those three things will stop the epidemic of opioid abuse, and no one need sit in an electric chair (or whatever the silly concept of 'humane
execution' has come up with this week).
So yeah... this time Trump got it wrong. I still support him in general, but not on this issue.