Off The Editor’s Desk – 10-11-2017

 Government can’t control drugs, how could they control guns?

There are no words that can explain why that deranged fellow shot up Las Vegas last week. I can only think about the loss of life and the families that are now grieving over the loss that they suffered.

Politicians and other influential people are calling for more laws to control guns. But is it the gun that is the culprit? I think not, it is the person that pulled the trigger? I never hear someone blaming the car when there is an accident that takes someone’s life. The driver is blamed!

The City of Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation. But hundreds are killed each year there from gun violence, most of which is tied to drugs or gangs.

We are a society of violence, just go and see a movie, or watch a television show, especially the cop shows. They are full of shooting, death, violence and sex, and seem to be the best sellers.

The government could take away all the guns from its citizens, and that would not end the shooting. The government has been trying to stop the distribution and sale of illegal drugs for as long as I can remember, but it appears that if someone wants to get drugs, it’s available. And, the same would be true for a gun. If someone were willing to pay the price, a gun would be available.

I don’t have the answers to what happen in Las Vegas. May be no one can fully understand why that guy went on a shooting spree and then killed himself. He should have shot himself first.

I recently read a column written by Jane M. Orient, M. D. about the opioid crises in America, and I would like to relate some of that column to you.

“More people are dying of opioid overdoses than died of AIDS at the height of the epidemic. The death toll is nearly twice that from global terrorism. The crises is so bad that it seems to be raining needles; 13,000 discarded syringes were collected last March in San Francisco, compared with 2,900 in March 2016. Coroners are experiencing personnel shortages and equipment failures across the U. S. In Berkeley County, West Virginia, two-thirds of the emergency medication budget is now spent on Narcan, used to treat overdoses.

“Between 1999 and 2011, annual opioid deaths nearly tripled, from 8,048 to 22,784, and the trend is accelerating. Probably not coincidentally, participation in the U. S. labor force started to decline at the same time, dropping to an all time low of 62.4 percent in 2015. While many people evidently have trouble finding a job, one building contractor said he has trouble finding workers who could pass a drug test and did not have a criminal record.

“The decades-long War on Drugs has obviously failed. Some recommended legalization, to reduce the profits from illicit drugs. That option is being tried for marijuana in some states. The odor of maturing marijuana plants in rural Oregon has become so pervasive that people worry about getting a second-hand high. And the drug cartels profits did suffer. So the Sinaloa drug cartel diversified into the heroin business. Mexican heroin is of very high quality, and is cheaper than OxyContin.

“What is going on? On the demand side, Americans are well indoctrinated by the sea of advertising about taking a pill for every ill. Nearly 70 percent of Americans take a least one prescription drug. Then there is the pervasive culture of instant gratification and moral relativism. As Paul Harvey predicted in his classic 1965 monologue, If I Were The Devil, these trends would lead to metal detectors and drug–sniffing dogs in schools.

“On the supply side, profits are enormous. The largest seizure to date of 63.8 kg of powdered fentanyl plus 30,000 counterfeit drug tablets, found in a tractor-trailer rig at a checkpoint near Yuma, Arizona, had a street value of $1.2 billion. Most of the fentanyl comes from China, a turnabout from the Opium Wars. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the British smuggled Indian opium into China, selling 1,400 tons per year in 1838, writes Dr. Marilyn Singleton, with devastating effects on the Chinese economy and political stability.

“America’s rivals and enemies clearly benefit from the deadly craving that kills or disables a large portion of the U. S. population, while imposing huge costs on the economy. Also benefiting is the multi-billion dollar treatment industry.

“While pouring billions into costly treatment methods with a one-year failure rate of around 90 percent, the government continues to provide free opioid prescriptions to Medicare and Medicaid enrollers, some of whom sell them on the street. And the Massachusetts attorney general shut down a network of sobriety-centric primary-care-based clinics with an astonishing high success rate and imprisoned the founder, Dr. Punyamurtula Kishore. His alleged crime: ordering too many urine tests.

“Is there any way that such massive international trafficking could thrive without some level of political protection? And is the government attempt to remedy the problem making it worse?”

Now let us all get behind Trump and get that wall built.

Thanks for reading! ~ Carlton