Some are touting this decision
as wonderful, stating their opinion that it will save lives. I take the contrasting viewpoint, that it will in fact only serve to further ruin the lives of so many of our vulnerable.
I've said it before, I oppose addiction-prolonging programs such as Insite. I will say this however... it's the best we've been able to come up with in this society, where we lack the collective will to actually dig in and help the victims of this awful scourge, of drug addiction.
The evidence of our collective lack of will is seen in the very court case that brought forward this ruling... stating that drug users have a "Constitutional right" to continue to use drugs... albeit in a "safe environment".
Hogwash. Where's our society's collective will to get these folks OFF the drugs that are destroying theirs and their families lives?
The solution? To band together, as a nation, and say to our fellow citizens who are addicted, "We stand with you, and we are going to do what is necessary to save your life, even if you don't want our help."
Then give our courts the mandate to get our friends, relatives, our fellow citizens into real drug rehab programs, and keep them there until the habit has been broken. From there, people need to be able to start a new life, with employment training, and then perhaps even relocation to a new town, in order to break the cycle and the circle of friends that keep bringing our vulnerable down. Get them into suitable housing, get them a real job, and help them start fresh... with a REAL chance to succeed.
And it won't happen so long as we continue to provide them an opportunity to wallow in their misery.
But you say, "That's a violation of their rights!!! That sort of thing is unConstitutional!!!"
Perhaps it is... but then again, I've never claimed to be a Libertarian.
Our fellow citizens need our help. Most of them can't solve this problem on their own. We need to, as a society, stand up and say to them, "We're with you to the bitter end". Then we need to stand firm and collectively work together, across all political lines, and do what is necessary to help our most helpless.
Do we have the collective will to do that? I don't think we do. I think that any such program, where desperate times call for desperate measures, will be opposed by those who advocate the notion that "Freedom of the Individual" trumps everything, even when it's obvious that the individual in question is unable to make the rational decisions necessary to preserve their own life.
I'm no fan of the State, however, there are times and places where the intervention of the State is necessary. This is one of those rare and few times, in my opinion. By getting our hands dirty and actively helping those who so desperately need our help, so many other problems are addressed. The overload our Healthcare systems have to bear when dealing with the drug afflicted. The crime that can result from our hurting citizens robbing and stealing to get their next fix.
Then we have to REALLY deal with those who are enslaving our fellow citizens, the drug producers and distributers, by giving REAL sentences, and getting them off the street. I'm talking about 10+ year sentences, without parole until the full sentence is completed. And I'm not talking about the low level folks dealing because they need the money, I'm talking about the suppliers, the labs, the kingpins. Make the penalties so severe that no one will even THINK about getting into the trade.
Do we have the collective will to do this? Some will say that my approach is overly simplistic, and that it's all been tried before, but to no avail. My answer is NO, we've NEVER really tried. We've never really put our backs into it, collectively as a society, and said "We will do what it takes to end this disease".
So you see, I'm not some heartless soul who has no interest in the vulnerable. I do, I really want to see them saved from their sin and misery. But the problem is, what I think is the only real solution can't happen until we finally decide to get the job done. We can't solve this problem until we decide, together, to stop providing addicts with a means by which to remain in their despairate state.
Can we really help them? Yes we can. Will we help them?
That's for you to decide. But yesterday's ruling is a step in the wrong direction.
Labels: crime, judicial activism