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As Long as We Remember...

January 17, 2019

The Scourge of Opioids

Harry M. Covert

For years illegal drug use has been invading every community of the nation. One of the world’s biggest purveyor of drugs is on trial. And, the talk is how opioids are destroying young and old alike.


Use of pot, officially called marijuana, has creeped into public acceptance. States, including Maryland, have jumped on the bandwagon allowing medicinal use and public sales.


At the same time, the discussion permeating those in authority involves opioids. As a reader once wrote, “drugs are bad, not good.” Actually the comment was meant to trivialize my column.


All know illegal drug use is devastating school students, some as young as fifth graders. So, the matter is talked to death.


The question? Who is at fault for the cruel assault on the young lives? Movies and teevee shows portray the drug business, how the insidious dope reaches American users. Viewers see piles of the billions of dollars in currency that result. Almost like watching the Prohibition-day gangsters cashing in on boozing. Exciting stories. Dirty business.


The rampant talk today is how to help those caught up in the opioid crisis. To be frank, law enforcement and courts are asked to control the epidemic. How can they do it? This is the impossible dream.


Here is how the National Institute on Drug Abuse describes the matter:


“Opioids are a class of drugs that include the illegal drug heroin, synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, and pain relievers available legally by prescription, such as oxycodone (OxyContin®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®), codeine, morphine, and many others.”


The easy thing is to blame local police and sheriff departments. Then we feel sorry for the victims/users/sellers of the stuff. The political jurisdictions and health communities are given the tasks of helping out.


Yes, buyers and sellers are busy cashing in on the problem. How to stop the business anyway? The U.S. military is in Afghanistan fighting the rogues. Just what is the national export in that part of the world? The answer is heroin and opium, smuggled. The market is incredible.


From South America, the drug lords flood the nation with cocaine and marijuana.


The matter now turns to the southern borders where the opioids enjoy easy access. But listen, please, the Department of Homeland Security is tasked with stopping illegals and dope dealers from entering the country. Oh, my, some of the invaders are children. The Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement have the dangerous job of enforcing the law.


No one seems to mention the illegal drug invasion in the print or broadcast media. It’s more inflammatory to talk about the poor Latinos escaping their crooked home nations.


All right, keep spending tax monies for vehicles to carry drug abusers for mental and medical treatment. And funding other Band-Aids to heal drug addicted lives.


The current hubbub over protecting Americans from illegals is strictly a smoke scream. It is sad that drug abusers are caught up in destroying their own lives and those around them. There is the thing called personal responsibility. No one forces users to inject themselves, no matter how you cut it. Not popular talk.


Entertainment stories are fun to watch as drug kingpins go about the business of marketing drugs. The blame of drug use does not belong on public officials in any department. The latter is in the cleanup business.


The modern day drug crisis is indeed a national catastrophe. It is not funny, not a path to happiness and success, nor something to emulate on the big screen or teevee.


The president can wipe out the Afghani poppy fields with air power. Why should our soldiers and airmen/women keep risking their lives in that hell hole? That part of the world is not worth the “blood, toil, tears and sweat” of a single American.


Then we learn five more Americans gave their lives in Syria yesterday. And more police officers and sheriff’s deputies are being shot at home.


When do we all protect the homeland? The slogan must be America First. Keep out the drugs in all forms and the illegals, too.


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