Friday, April 14, 2017

America's Addictive-Drugs Epidemic!

"Drug-overdose" is now the leading cause of accidental death in America—more so than that caused by guns and automobiles combined!

[12/21/2017 Update: Opioid drug deaths continue to skyrocket—as U.S. life expectancy drops for 2nd year! Centers for Disease Control & Prevention data released on 12/21/2017 show YR 2016 drug-related deaths increased to an alarming 63,600—a deadly 21 percent increase from the 52,000 reported in YR 2015. Further evidencing a very real and worsening U.S. opioid epidemic in which, for the first time, the powerful and addictive painkiller fentanyl, and its close opioid cousins, contributed to more deaths than any other legal or illegal drug, and exceeding prescription pain pills and heroin. Our U.S. death rate from drug overdoses has reportedly more than tripled from 1999 to 2016!]

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On October 26, 2017, President Donald Trump declared our U.S. opioid crisis a “national public health emergency.  Citing it to be the “worst drug crisis in American history”; stressing that preliminary data indicates that approximately 64,000 Americans died last year of drug overdoses, the majority of them from opioid abuse; and, prompting states across the country to act more rapidly to combat this epidemic. During this crucial declaration, President Trump especially noted that "no part of our society – not young or old, rich or poor, urban or rural – has been spared this horrible plague." First lady Melania Trump, speaking at the White House before the president, also stressed that “drug addiction can take your friends, neighbors and families. No state has been spared.”

The universal struggles to experience love, joy, happiness, belonging, social relevance, longevity, freedom or relief from pain, etc., and various escapes from some of life’s discomforting and sometimes harsh realities, have likely been with us since the beginning of humankind. Struggles also concerning the special challenges associated with self-perceived “uniqueness,” suffered at times by many, if not all, of us in some manner.

And, among the many responses to such age-old struggles has come an ever-growing arsenal of natural and man-made "substances." Some offering solutions and promise on one hand, while also harboring the many sufferings involved with addiction. For example, substances commonly called "drugs," "alcohol," "tobacco," "marijuana," "narcotics," and seemingly less stigmatizing and less threatening terms, such as, "prescription medications." Substances used legally and illegally for a growing number or purposes, including but not limited to; recreation; relief of pain, ranging from the imagined to the most severe; stress relief or avoidance; treatment of diseases ranging from the common cold to the most painful and debilitating; capital punishment; performance enhancement; sedation; stimulation; and behavior control (such as, wrongfully and destructively preventing young children from behaving like “young children”).

“Addictive substances” that (regardless of technical definition) are all nonetheless very much “mood and behavior altering.” [Think not? Then step into the shoes of anyone now abusing or attempting to withdraw from any addictive substance—yes, even alcohol, marijuana, tobacco, etc. Or, into the shoes of the family or other lives that drug-abuse impacts.] Therefore, throughout the herein recommended book---"Destruction From Within"---each and all such substances are simply and fittingly referred to as “addictive-drugs.” Whose use and abuse by millions can, and increasingly does, involve a thin line between a positive outcome and one of dependency, addiction, and death.

The types of natural and man-made “addictive-drugs” are many and involve a long and complex history of world-wide scope. One entailing a depth of detail purposely not addressed herein. Nor is such detail required in order to grasp the truly devastating reality of America’s “present and rapidly spreading” addictive-drugs epidemic. One fueled in large measure by both our natural and unrealistic cravings; a profit-driven drug industry; drug cartels; ignorance; apathy, complacency, denial, greed, fear; technology; and even well-intentioned physicians. A “self-destruction from within” that “Trump’s Wall” and our nation’s borders, regardless of how strong, will not alone shield us from. An ever-spreading epidemic of tragedy from which no individual, family, group, age, race, religion, sexual orientation, political affiliation, or other population demographic is immune! 

                                                            —William James Moore

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“There is no chemical solution to a spiritual problem.”

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