So we are living in a society that shames addiction and addicts.
And this approach is the one we have tried to implement for the past 50 years time and it has gotten our society absolutely nowhere.
Yes there has been tries to not punish addicts, but they have been wrong in their own way.
A good example of this is the huge homeless population in America that is addicted to either alcohol or drugs, and sometimes even both, they dont in many states get punished anymore, but they get to help either to get clean.
Not to mention that many homeless people suffer from mental illness also, and the same thing here almost no help is available due to the costs.
We should judge our society based on how we treat our week sisters and brothers and how we treat animals.
A mentally strong person tries to help a week person, and does not look down on that person, when they are on their knees!.
We are building new prisons where we house addicts and the core problem never gets solved.
Addicts need treatment and not incarceration, and any half smart doctor can tell you that.
So we have lost countless lives to the Opiod crisis in the US for the past 20 years time, and maybe, just maybe there is some light at the end of the tunnel with this crisis.
But it will be another 10 years until we know for sure.
So there is a Swedish study of petty crime and low end crimes in our society and it goes like this.
After studying 5000 criminals committing burglary, steeling from cars and other not so monetary wise big crimes and without any violence linked to them.
Here is what the study says, over 98,8% of the people studied between 1995-2000, where addicted to drugs.
The study was made at Lunds university in Sweden by a professor called Gyllengren, we can not find the study right now to post here, but we remember it well.
So basically we could stop these small types of crimes by treating these addict and stop 98,8% of those crimes in the future.
These where generally good people , but they committed crimes to support their never ending addiction.
So what do we do today?, so basically most of the times we lock the person up, and they serve 3-18 months and they come out and they start to use again and they commit the same type of crimes all over again, and the viscous cycle never gets broken until they are dead in most of the cases.
We know that a criminal that is a drug addict will cost the society over 4 million dollars in their life time, while a citizen not hooked on drugs will bring in money to our society as a productive member of said society.
So when we talk about treatment being more expensive than prison , this is only true when you look at the short term costs.
We have to look at the long term costs for our society and for the individual!.
And we have to take the shame factor out of it.
Everybody can become and addict, and it can be drugs, alcohol or gambling you name it!.
We treat only gambling addicts at Mrlifeadvise but we are tight with other experts that are treating alcoholic’s and drug addicts on a daily basis, so we have some insight into this also.
So when we just focus on building treatment programs , massive state run facilities for many people that is the key to fixing many of these issues in our society.
Some people get scared when they hear state run treatment program’s, but we have so many addicts in our society that we need to build up a bigger program than normal privatized treatment centers can handle.
So as long as we can not accept that people who are addicts need our help and not look down on them we are getting nowhere.
California and Oregon has stopped punishing drugs users and people using, but that does not solve anything if they do not also get the help they need , true treatment programs.
So the step is a good one, that we dont keep locking up the same person over and over again for their own drug use.
But then we also need to be bold enough to build up a large scale treatment program than can handle a 1 million people a year true the doors.
So of course bad people should go to prison, we are 100% for that, to keep our society safe, but when we send massive amounts of non violent offenders to prison on a regular basis for drug possession, that is where are acting 100% wrong, since we are not fixing the core problem in our society with our addicts!.
Take care out there.