Pubdate: Mon, 21 Nov 2016
Source: Daily Courier, The (CN BC)
Copyright: 2016 The Okanagan Valley Group of Newspapers
Author: Jorgen Hansen
Page: A7


To the editor: An addiction is requiring or needing something urgently
on a regular basis. Tobacco, booze and other chemicals are an example.

Then, the next question is: how do we become addicted?

Some become addicted after a serious injury, etc. after a doctor has
prescribed a chemical to ease their pain or discomfort.

Others become addicted through some social behaviour, such as when you
are out with friends and they introduce you to some chemical, such as
cocaine or the like, thus an addiction is set up.

A doctor may be responsible, in part, for your addiction to his
prescribed medication, but you are still responsible for continuing to
consume the chemical.

How much a prescription contains or continues to be used is also an
ethical dilemma in that, once addicted, it may become difficult to
come clean again.

Let us now talk about the taxpayers' responsibility. Does someone's
addiction become the taxpayers' problem?

What responsibility does the addicted person have for himself and for
the society in which he lives?

If there is no will or self control to become clean, then what can
society do for this person?

We cannot lock them up until clean. We cannot prevent them from
consuming the next dose of chemicals, but we choose to chase after the
addicted with a needle full of the antidote so the person does not die
from his addiction.

We also have the police across the country as well as border patrol,
attempting to prevent drugs for the addicted coming into our country.

The addicted, once in an overdose, will, hopefully, be brought to the
hospital or attended by medics and not die - this time, at least.

If an addict has a close call, will he quit the drugs? Not a hope in
hell - he will take the next dose as well.

These medical interventions are expensive and do not help the addict
or prevent the next overdose.

So, what should society do to help our fellow man and his

Booze has already been controlled to a certain extent, but we still
have alcoholics in our society.

Chemicals, heroin or cocaine as examples, still seem to available on
every street corner or at every high-end party for the people who can
afford the price, but police cannot seem to put this under control.

Many dollars are spent each year in an attempt to slow the drugs
entering or being made in our country.

We seem to be able to catch the small fish, but not the big ones. What
can the answer be? Street drugs are relatively cheap to produce. We
can choose to do it legally, i.e. purchase all the available cocaine
and heroin direct from the producers, thus eliminating the many middle
men who profit on the sales.

Each addicted person would be required to carry his ID card and could
go to a registered pharmacy or liquor store and only once per day pick
up his required drug, which would be pharmacy quality and not doctored
with other dangerous chemicals.

Let the addicted people have this for free, especially if they would
steal or rob to get their drugs.

It has been proven that addicts can function quite

The money spent on the daily policing of the drugs would easily pay
for the clean drugsfor the addicted people.

Today, we can say for sure that the medical system has not found a
cure or an answer for addicted people.

An addicted person has to have a very strong will to come clean. If an
addict decides to overdose, then it would be his choice and we could
let that person make that choice without interfering.

Booze is bad enough, but the chemicals are much worse.

I have seen many serious addicts during my years at school in
Vancouver and I do feel for them in their efforts to come clean or at
least have a comfortable life.

Just think, it may also help to reduce the crime and killing on our

It is time we make some changes and offer some type of relief for the
addicted and for the society.

What is happening now is not good for anyone. We can reduce the street
value of the drugs by giving the drugs away. Maybe the drug dealers
will be out of business.

Jorgen Hansen, Kelowna
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