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Bailey Jones

During the crack epidemic we missed the opportunity to treat addiction as the illness that it is, opting instead to fill our prisons with addicts. I hope we do better this time.

Robert Ray

I am doubly concerned. In the first place is the need to deal with addiction, regardless of the substance. The current buzz phrase of “Opiod Crisis†doesn’t really place the emphasis where it belongs. It is just the next in a long line of phrases trying to place blame on a substance rather than a behavior. In the second place, and what really is most disconcerting to me, is what using this phrase is meaning to those who have legitimate pain concerns. In a previous article, the author and several interviewees made statements to the affect that seemed to indicate a growing belief that nearly anyone with a prescription opioid was a junkie, if not a criminal. Worse than that assertation is that no one is talking about how all of this affects people with legitimate, serious, long-term pain. Articles such as these are incredibly one-sided and could be taken as fear mongering by many. Opioid use is a very complex issue. Addiction is only one facet of it. Yet legislators, law enforcement and the press are stuck on this one side, seemingly without consideration of those who have legitimate pain such that without the level of relief these medications provide, could not function. So I hope that we can all take a moment to stop and consider the situation carefully, and then tread softly and make sure we are treating the cause, not the symptom.

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