An excellent article that focuses on yet another failure in our war on drugs. Truly one has to realize at this point that our drug policies in this country are too often, mostly perhaps, driven by vested interests exploiting ignorance and fear for power and pay. The bureaucrats and the cronies in pharma take advantage of the deep Puritanical tendencies in this country. Tendencies that often contribute to people living lives of agony and despair.
Drugs are a mental health issue and should be treated as such. What we are doing now and have done for all too long is simply idiotic.
Heroin overdose rates doubled in 28 states between 2010 and 2012, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A record-breaking 28,000 Americans died of opioid overdoses in 2014. In 2000, the age-adjusted drug overdose death rate was 6.2 per 100,000 persons. By 2014, it had more than doubled, to 14.7, according to the CDC.
The truth is that many of those deaths are completely preventable and result not from painkillers, but from the Drug Enforcement Administration’s war on painkillers.
This week, the Senate is likely to pass the 21st Century Cures Act. Among other things, it allocates $1 billion to help states “combat heroin and painkiller addiction and recovery.” Policymakers would be wise to make sure that states don’t use that $1 billion to make the problem worse.