“People are worth more than their worst mistake” Vivek Murthy, MD

I live right smack in the city. I pass people who may be without homes, exhibit mental illness and those who are addicted to opioids.

Opioid addiction is a disease; just like your diabetes or heart disease. Would you admonish a pancreas if it was sitting on top of the head of a diabetic, visible to everyone,  commenting as you pass the Pancreas, “You filthy glandular organ, why don’t you just produce insulin and get the hell out of my way?!” Or, “You got yourself into this mess, you ugly organ, go die.” Or, “Just repair yourself. It’s easy! I’m perfect! Look at me!  Be more like ME!”

These diseases are similar. You break your wrist, you get Vicodin, your brain changes where it tricks you into thinking you truly need it to be out of pain and happy; like those drugs you take to enhance the function of the nerve cells in the brain, called SSRI’s.  So that’s a chemically induced feeling of happiness, right? Gotta have that serotonin. “Don’t mess with my serotonin!”

Well, you’re a walking addict too. (I was on Wellbutrin for five years and the “duh” factor was awful.)

So… if arresting Pancreas for stealing that wedding cake because it’s tricked into thinking it “needed it sooo bad” is a crime punishable by prison? Think about it.

If arrested, addicts need to go immediately to a rehabilitation facility. No stopping in jail.

They are our children, our moms, dads, grandmothers and siblings. We have to look at addiction from a scientific angle, not from prejudice and emotion.

And remember…people are worth more than their worst mistake.

A hug to you dear friend. We’re in this together.

 

 

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