PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The National Heroin Threat Assessment released Friday by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administrations shows heroin use and availability are on the rise, with more heroin-related deaths than at any time in the last decade.
Funny how the media is only showcasing the problems with heroin, when:
Nationally, the number of deaths involving heroin more than tripled to 8,260 overdose deaths in 2013, from 2,402 deaths in 2007, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention…
Out of a population of 318 million in the U.S., 8,260 overdoses would be 0.000025%.
Although fewer people presently use heroin than other illicit drugs, the heroin user population is growing at a faster rate than any other drug of abuse, the DEA said in a statement.
This one report is only about heroin, no other drug. See, it’s important for the DEA to create reports like this — it’s called job protection. First, the DEA causes the problem with its war on pain patients — restricting access to pain medications by fear and threats, and closing down doctors, pharmacies, and suppliers — then it reports on the resulting problems so everyone thinks we need to keep funding the DEA.
The higher demand for heroin is partly driven by an increase in controlled prescription drug-abuse over the past decade. A recent SAMHSA study found that four out of five recent new heroin users had previously abused prescription pain relievers.
And I bet 5 out of 5 heroin users previously abused alcohol and cigarettes, too. No doubt 4 out of 5 heroin users are also survivors of some kind of trauma, like child abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault, bullying, discrimination, gun violence, and/or poverty. And I would guess that a significant percentage suffer from mental illnesses, some of which are undiagnosed.
And what does that mean, that the SAMHSA study found four out of five “recent new” heroin users had previously abused pain meds? What percentage of heroin users are recent or new?
Heroin is now higher in purity, less expensive, and often easier to obtain than illegal prescription painkillers and is of a higher purity, so it can be smoked or snorted, thereby avoiding the stigma associated with injection, the DEA statement said…
“DEA is targeting the cartels that produce and smuggle heroin into the U.S. and organized criminals that distribute this poison,” DEA Administrator Chuck Rosenberg said. “We will continue to combat heroin trafficking to protect Americans from this severe and growing threat.”
The DEA has been “targeting” cartels for as long as I’ve been alive. (And that’s a long time.) And it’s only “poison” because of the drug war and because it wasn’t manufactured by Big Pharma and prescribed by a doctor. If heroin is now allegedly of a higher purity, why call it poison? To stigmatize both the drug and those who use it, just like the DEA has stigmatized and criminalized pain patients and the drugs they use to treat their pain.
The problems with heroin are similar to those with cannabis, which is still federally illegal and illegal in most states, giving rise to synthetic and poisonous drugs like Spice.
Thanks DEA, ya’ll are doing a bang-up job.