Just say no to naloxone

Naloxone, or Narcan® is the antidote for heroin overdose. It puts first responders in a position to “save” junkies from their stupidity. The same junkies who, in many cases, have been taking up inordinate amounts of their resources- causing crimes to feed to their habit.

Some first responders don’t feel comfortable intervening in Darwin’s work. Others, worry about liability, as practicing medicine isn’t what they signed up for. And, in many cases, it’s really a moot point, because many junkies just come back and do it again.

The reality is, our country is schizophrenic about addiction and drug use. While there is a growing base of support for legalized marijuana which was often labeled a “gateway drug”, cigarettes which are said to be more addictive than heroin- are getting carte blanche access to a new nicotine delivery system via vapor/e-cigs. Stats are showing a decline in smoking among teens but a huge uptick in e-cig use.

What’s even funnier- is that persons vaping in the bar, may not even have nicotine fluid in their vape- it may be hash oil- and you’d be none the wiser. Chalk one up for the druggies.

Fentanyl is the “new problem” for junkies. Dealers apparently don’t see the value in return clientele and are cutting their H with Fentanyl- with deadly results. It’s a synthetic opiate- that’s much more powerful and fast acting. It’s a sad day when you need 100% organic labeling on the drug you’re buying to ruin your life- but, that seems to be the case.

Governments can pass laws all they want against drug use, but they won’t stop it anymore than laws against prostitution have worked, or prohibition with alcohol. Drug use is here to stay. What we have to decide is what our real goal is in society? Is it to eliminate people’s escape mechanisms- or to create a huge incarceration industry- or to improve everyone’s quality of life?

Think about it. You may never ingest a single illegal substance. You may not know anyone who does, but you pay for it in so many different ways.

  • The cost of crime to feed the addicts’ habits.
  • The lost hours of productivity as people deal with their loved ones’ addictions.
  • The cost of emergency services to respond to overdoses.
  • The costs of locking people up.
  • The cost of insurance against the actions of addicts- who are more likely to be uninsured motorists involved in accidents, thieves, etc.
  • The cost of health care provided “for free” to these physically debilitated junkies.
  • Costs of maintenance programs that substitute one drug for another at public expense.

Face it- we all pay the costs of a few peoples’ illness.

This isn’t unique to the United States- just our huge emphasis on incarcerating people for being involved with drugs are. We spend billions on a system that doesn’t solve anything. Just like Naloxone- it’s not a cure, just a quick fix- a return back to square one, to start the merry go round again.

Should we just let junkies die? While that sounds harsh- we seem to be in favor of the death penalty too, seeing as we allow it. It’s amazing- the State can’t find the drug combo it wants to use to kill people- with drug companies “refusing to supply it” – while Fentanyl seems to work just fine on the streets.

We need to totally rethink how we want to deal with drug addiction in this country. Suppose we supplied clean kits and provided no questions drug purity testing? Would heroin deaths and the need for Naloxone drop?

Or, if we just legalized the drugs and tried to make sure that the people who want to go through life stoned- can do so without impacting the rest of us? Sometimes I think we’d do better to just wall off a Vegas like compound- where people can go in and do whatever they want- signing waivers to enter- with the only condition is much like the old Vegas ad tagline- “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” You want to gamble, prostitute, do drugs- go to the compound, let the rest of us get on with our own lives free of your “sins.”

While I believe my body to be a temple- and that ingesting drugs and  alcohol are a defilement, most of the population has no problem with drinking- despite the huge numbers of deaths from drunk driving- and costs associated with lost productivity due to hangovers. Taking drugs is really a crime against yourself in my eyes- and having the government get involved in your personal decisions doesn’t work out most of the time, be it pregnancy, marriage or assisted suicide.

You can make a historical argument for such a place- didn’t the founding fathers declare: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” – and if you think heroin is going to make you happy- who are we to stop you?

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14 Comments on "Just say no to naloxone"

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Dave C.

Maybe a DEBAUCHERY ZONE is the answer. Maybe the Libertarians are right. Maybe incremental recreational suicide via chemicals is a personal decision, and the government shouldn’t get involved.

People ingest all kinds of awful stuff, including booze, fast food, drugs, soda, tobacco, etc. They also sit and stare at screens for hours, ignore common-sense medical advice, and engage in high-risk sex. The list goes on and on.

Legislating against stupidity has never worked. I say we tax and geographically isolate knucklehead behavior. Give each state an Amsterdam (or several) and tax whatever happens there according to societal cost. If that means Jack Daniels is $1000 a bottle, so be it.

It’s worth a try. Nothing else we’ve done has worked very well. Most cities already have an unofficial DEBAUCHERY ZONE. This concept just makes it official, and manages the cost MUCH better.

andrew

I was completely on board to vote Esrati until I read this. I never realized how blind to social issues you are until now. The more I read, the more you seem like every other politician in Dayton. But i think it goes beyond you being a politician, atleast they are just puppets. You are socially ignorant without the pressure of a party to influence your decisions. Congratulations, you lost a supporter.

jeanine

You really need to do more research. I am very disappointed in your statement. Being a nurse myself, I see this addiction day in and out. You obviously don’t have a loved one with an addiction problem. It’s a disease, you are overlooking that. These addicts didn’t choose this life. If someone came in with chest pain would I with hold treatment because of anything, no. This is a great program and people need to keep their own biasis to themselves.

new government
new government
It is very difficult when a family member, love one, good friend, or someone from a broken home feels the need to resort to drugs, or addicted to a substance or suffers the need to repeat hurting themselves and society at large; it is strain on all of us. We sometimes do everything humanly possible to break there bad habits. Sometimes law enforcement will do it with incarceration only to see the individual go back to their habit and repeat the destructive cycle. they can use other drugs to replace the bad habit like methadone did with limited or results of replacing one addiction for another. The difference with Narcan is fast acting to bring the person back from the brink but the individual can end up right back again and sometimes it will be too late. Gary Leitzell provided commentary on this both personally and to the media on methods of making legal and available substances in a safe environment with a trained health professional ( Denmark ) to document the individual in such a setting. This does offer an alternative to the dysfunctional thinking government and society. Lets offer a disclaimer to the user that they will be provided their fix with an option to wean off their fix until completely stopped. This can be done with more results, less money, and reduce the crime of the user saving us lots of stress. Did anyone listen to him locally with this viable option he presented? Of course the drug companies want to make their profits with their drug derivative substances with the false hope that this is some kind of solution, but only adds to the suffering and continuing addiction that keeps the problem needing a fix. We can hope that these options get some attention as viable options in the near future and give this a chance to a workable model. It is obvious the current treatments and options are not producing any meaningful solutions. Test studies can be done to at least see if this can produce results or other feedback needed to add other options… Read more »
Martha Hardcastle Guthrie
Martha Hardcastle Guthrie

I spoke to a first responder who is sick of reviving the same walking dead thieving junkies repeatedly. She suggested a three strikes and out on Narcan. I thought it worth repeating in this context.

Dave C.

The best we can do us create a safe place for people to engage in these behaviors, and monitor the strength and purity of the drugs taken.

For all DEBAUCHERY ZONE clientele, we attach an ankle monitor for remote reporting of vital signs, location, drug consumption,and communication. Also, it’s equipped with a built-in taser just in case police need to subdue/arrest the wearer.

Make drug counseling and medical care readily available, with the drug user paying all of the cost of providing these services and operating the DEBAUCHERY ZONE.

Ralph

” I believe my body to be a temple- and that ingesting drugs and alcohol are a defilement”

No doubt this is why you drone on for hours day after day, weaving in and out of rage with most issues being far from your circle of influence. Maybe you need to have a drink occasionally. I’ve never heard drinking or smoking a little weed has caused anyone to show up at a city commission meeting dressed as a Ninja.

Joe Strummer
Joe Strummer

David you are a asshole. You sound like Chris Christie. You both seem to have the issue with being over weight, and you like to talk about self control.

Joe Whalen

Hi David. I disagree with much of what you’ve written in this particular post, but that’s neither here nor there. I enjoy reading your entries and appreciate your passion for and dedication to the Gem City. As my father–former UD Econ prof and 3rd District congressman Chuck Whalen–often said to me, even when he disagreed with the contents of my messages, ‘Keep up the good work!’ If he was still alive, he also would, I think, enjoy reading your stuff. He believed everyone’s voice matters. Best wishes. Joe Whalen

Ice Bandit

…Jeanine: Angel of Mercy, sister of Florence Nightingale and purveyor of aid to the least worthy of us: perhaps your compassion and empathy have left you myopic to one salient fact. For not person who injects themselves with heroin for the first time can be ignorant that addiction and the turmoil that comes with it will be the end result. Alcoholics may start with legal consumption in socially accepted settings. And the prescription pill addict may start with medical confidence. But heroin is purchased from the most sociopathic in the most dangerous parts of town. So in spite of your contention, this is the lifestyle they pursue and prefer. Of course, when presented with this human wreckage, you are bound by ethic, oath, tradition and law to render assistance. But after a fifth or sixth overdose, not unusual in this community, one can’t but wonder if suicide wasn’t the real pursuit, and how much effort and treasure should be expended to halt that goal…

Jill

My brother just did a shot of heroin. He laid out of work this morning…had our mom take him to the ER for one of his many aches and pains…the hospital found nothing wrong with him and evidently sent him home with no narcotics…therefore he went out and got dope. I am as disgusted as a person can get. Going to find a way to really f*** him up…dulled his needle a few days ago…now on to bigger and better punishment for this loser. He has made our mom miserable with his heroin use so now I plan on making him pay the price. Lmao…

bilbo baggins
bilbo baggins

heroin will fix itself. just like it did in the 60s. leave it alone. Darwin will take care of it. but too late politicians and pharma have found a profit vehicle which is just a derivative market off of heroin. drug dealers love naxolone. dead junkies don’t by more dope!! wake up people. this shit is just one more thing to add to the growing weakness of the US population.

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[…] wrote a post about Narcan, coincidentally, 2 years ago to the day: “Just say no to naloxone” I was chastised in comments. And in the two years, we’ve just seen massive increases […]

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