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  • Virginia Waters
    June 15, 2013 - 20:51

    ".. some patients in their 10th year on methadone who are reluctant to leave it" - i.e. from one crutch to another. I think I agree with 'Sometimes'. Perhaps our efforts to minimize the pain and suffering associated with 'getting clean' or 'drying out' are contributing to the high rate of relapse. Is it possible that the stark memory of a painful rehabilitation unassisted by methadone or other drugs would help addicts more in the long term? When we look at the enormous costs and grief for families and society that accompanies addictive drugs, we have to ask whether it is time for a two pronged approach. The first step is to take the manufacture and distribution of pot out of the hands of criminals and assign responsibility for it to the liquor commission. (Yes, I realize that alcohol is addictive - but one battle at a time please.) That will free up an enormous amount of money and energy that can be redirected to the interdiction of harsher drugs. The second step is to make treatment of addicts mandatory under law. For those for whom voluntary treatment doesn't work, incarceration would be necessary. The latter would be outside the prison system unless the addict is found guilty of crimes other than the possession of addictive drugs. I don't insist this is the only solution, but I think it is high time that we considered other strategies and therapies. The current system simply doesn't work.

  • Sometimes
    June 15, 2013 - 08:16

    Sometimes I wonder if society is better off to put these people in a room for as long as it takes for the drugs to wear off. Withdrawal is rough, really rough. I wouldn't wish it on anybody. Crime has escalated because of drugs. Needles are left out in the open. People are getting killed. Some time of being sick may make them think seriously about going back on drugs.