The D.E.A and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement swooped in last week and shut down one of the local pill mills. Sarasota wasn’t the only city they targeted; several pill mills across the state were also raided. My first thought: FINALLY! There had been rumors swirling around for years that a few hundred dollars and a smile would get you almost any prescription you wanted. The relief only lasted a few seconds before sheer panic set in. What would happen to the addicts who bought their drugs from this pill mill? Would the state/county offer free counseling? Rehab? Without getting help or treatment, addicts would find new doctors to write prescriptions or turn to street drugs.
And that’s exactly what’s happening…
According to the news, heroin is on the rise in Florida. It’s cheap—much cheaper than pills—easy to locate, and its high is intoxicating (as you all should know from reading Memoirs Aren’t Fairytales). In fact, the other night the news showed the top signs/symptoms of heroin abuse: small pupils, laziness, not showing up to work, and a lack of cleanliness. Nothing against the local news and their efforts, but really? That’s all they’ve got? A lack of cleanliness? If you’re going to inform the public of sign/symptoms, at least give the viewers a little more than heroin addicts don’t shower regularly.
Addiction is already storming through our houses, affecting our parents, children, friends, and community. It’s a tornado that’s pulling from the roots and leaving death in its wake. And it’s only going to get worse. There are hundreds—maybe even thousands—of pill addicts who are going to switch to heroin or some other drug because we’re shutting down their distributor. We need to do a lot more than just warn the public that junkies have small pupils and don’t show up to work. We need a plan, and we all need some hope.