Pubdate: Fri, 06 Jan 2017
Source: Peace Arch News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2017 Peace Arch News
Author: Jerry Lucky



Re: Delve deeper into drug issue, Dec. 28 editorial.

Quite frankly, I was appalled at the tone of your editorial, which I
assume was written in reply to your paper's online survey results that
showed an overwhelming response from your readers who wanted to see
governments reduce spending to fight the current drug crisis.

Your passive-aggressive and condescending tone to somehow guilt the
reader was, to be blunt, shameful. How dare you accuse us of lacking
empathy or sympathy.

There is no question the current drug epidemic is a crisis and a
tragic situation for all involved, however, in a misguided effort to
show compassion, many in the media, civic politics and the various
drug-treatment programs have simply become enablers.

As most parents know, showing compassion to children often means
showing where behaviour boundaries are. It is in no way compassionate
to allow people to abuse themselves or those around them.

Your analogy - creating some form of specious parallel to smoking,
alcohol and commuters - breaks down as all analogies do. Even if we do
bear costs related to these activities, the last time I checked,
smoking, drinking alcohol and commuting are legal activities. That
cannot be said for the drug crisis, which is one of illicit drug-use
and, by definition, refers to a product that is forbidden by law, rule
or custom.

Users purchasing these drugs - whether in Vancouver's drug-ridden East
Side or the recreational user in Kitsilano - know they are doing
something that is illegal.

No amount of 'clean-injection sites' will solve this problem. No
amount of money spent equipping first responders will help those
taking an illegal drug, alone in their home. No amount of education
will prevent drug purchases for those who choose to ignore reality.

The simple truth is we are looking for the wrong solution to the
current drug problem. The people who are currently taking these drugs
are, in many cases, trying to fix a hole in their heart, to help them
get by and make it to another day. You can't fix that hole with
so-called progressive, trendy "feel good" ideas, even if there is some
supposed science behind it.

We have been fighting this problem for decades and it's only gotten
worse. There is no amount of money, education, "safe-injection sites"
or science that can fix a problem of the soul.

Let's stop looking for well-intentioned but sorely misguided Band-Aid
solutions to this current tragedy and start asking the hard questions
about why these people are taking drugs in the first place.

As a society, we need to get to the root of the problem. Only when we
can identify and attempt to fix that problem will we be able to help

Jerry Lucky, White Rock
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