Street tales: Dumb and Dumber

“When the pain (of loss) gets too hard I smoke some pot; it helps and doesn’t give me the aftereffects of that harder crap”. These words came out of the mouth of the young woman in last week’s article. Her state of mind at that moment was one of humiliating loss and rejection which is usually the time that she craves more dope; it deadens the hurt inside of her.

Although I will probably get a bit of objection to my statements, the fact remains; marijuana is a mind altering and harmful drug and can be a gateway to harder drugs. My reasoning is based on having heard hundreds of statements from users who will make claims of the benefits. Trouble is, the majority of the benefits are mental; there are some who would benefit physically from it for sure, but by and large, most use it to get high or just to ‘feel better’ as in the case of young Penny. It is like the claims made for cigarettes as a relaxant.

There is absolutely no scientific verification in either case, but Facebook stories and the like rule the day. Some may be true, but many made up testimonials lend to the acceptance of this drug. Here in lies the problem. I liken the acceptance of marijuana to the frog’s acceptance of the temperature increasing pot of water that he is in. Dumb!

I am not referring to the occasional user, but one who likes the ‘buzz’ so much that it becomes a habit. Even one time is enough to give a feeling of well-being, enough so that the acceptance of more and more, grows, weakening the resistance to an addiction. Dumber!

In all likelihood you would have heard the commercials claiming the prevention of serious heart failure if the person takes Low-dose Aspirin. For some with a history of heart problems it is probably true, but now I speak to many folks my age who take it just because of the commercials. In speaking to my doctor about it, his statement was, “if it eases your mind, go ahead, it won’t hurt you”. Now I’m not so sure.

I’m not exaggerating when I say that life at times is very difficult. That is just a fact of life. To face the difficulties in life with a clear mind is also at times quite hard, but the use of drugs whether prescribed, (sometimes needed), street purchased or given by a ‘generous benefactor’, is a cop-out pure and simple. If what I have learned through reading and studying that perseverance and hardship builds strength and character, then what does a cop-out build?

It seems at times, that prescribed opioids have created as many addicts as the street has. Our modern culture and propensity to ease each and every little pain or problem with drugs has seemingly turned our entire country into a culture of addicts. How did people survive or even live before drugs were invented? Problem is, I have to include myself in that mess; I don’t want to live with pain either.

Someone commented on my articles one day during a meal at the kitchen, “You always identify the problem and explain it, but very seldom offer a solution.” I thought about that and realized that the solutions that I could offer, no one wants to hear because of their resistance to it. My view is that we do not want to let anyone else have control or influence in our lives, so very few solutions are possible.

But no solution is possible if at first we don’t as an entire country recognise our dependency on drugs; legal though they may be. This is where the rubber hits the road! Think about it.

Chris Salomons is the kitchen coordinator at Potter’s Hands in Red Deer.

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