We may think ourselves superior to addicts, since we are not addicted to the same things as they are. We may not be addicted to heroin or alcohol, but we certainly have a lot in common with them. If we have a look at “them” and “us” we can clearly see that there are more than striking similarities. Let’s examine them!
So, we both need air, food to live, we both were born to a mother and the father, the blood in our veins is red, although it may contain different substances, and believe it or not, we both need love. Furthermore we all are most likely addicted to one thing or another. It may be alcohol, gambling, junk food, sugar, junk on tv, computer games, caffeine, anger, religion and so on. It is a matter of using our own dictionary to define what “drug” is.
It is erroneous to think drug addicts are addicted to drugs. They are addicted to the feelings generated by the drugs. Do we honestly believe that listening to Alan Jones’ self-righteous rants and feeling relieved is that much different to taking a hit from a syringe? Let me be the one to pop the bubble for ya: if you consume mass media you belong to a very persuasive sect, if you buy the newest gadgets without considering the suffering went into producing your Eye-phone then you are just like a junkie. You feel you need to have the next high.
You can stop your internal dialogue if you are about to say that what you do is legal and socially acceptable. Just because something is legal, as slavery and the oppression of woman were not long ago, it does not make it ethical or morally acceptable. Sorry. You may even try to put forward an argument for the consumption of alcohol, saying it can be done in moderation. Quite a few illicit substance user can say the same things about their choice of drugs. There are people who can use drugs and kind of control their behaviour. I am not saying that I condone any of it, I am merely outlining a different argument.
So what can be a solution? We can continue to put drug addicts, sick people, in jail and hope they’ll get better while being locked up. But what if they won’t? They will get out eventually and go back to the same behaviour. Not to mention the money and resources wasted on prosecuting them. Imagine if the police could actually focus on real crime instead of chasing drug users. We could consider legalising drugs, but that would just be morally unacceptable to allow uninformed 18-21 year old people to ingest unknown substances with unknown consequences. Do we honestly believe just because they are of legal age they suddenly know how to handle drugs? Just take a walk in downtown (insert name of any Australian city) on a Friday or Saturday night or in the Emergency Department of Hospitals. The streets have become war zones and the victims are us: drunken fights ending in serious injury or death have become our reality.
How about decriminalisation? Being addicted is not a crime. Selling drugs of addiction is. Keep your eyes peeled for the next dealer. He may be wearing a suit telling you about the best loan you (believe) you need, she maybe carrying a holy book or a gadget you (believe) need to have. He can have a phony smile while holding some fizzy drink, she can be a movie star selling you fake dreams.
So when you are sitting together with eleven other wise humans, be watchful. So thou shall not judge before you look your high in the eye…
You have gazed into your eyes. What did you see???