Sunday, February 2, 2014

Philip Seymour Hoffman 2014 RIP

      In reading the news on the overdose death of Philip Hoffman, I was saddened by the loss of a man of talent and I feel empathy for his partner and their three children and pray their grief is assuaged by a loving God and the memories of his time on this Earth which will live on in film for a long time. Even poets especially for strangers cannot find the magic wand of rhyme to allay the grief and help the wounds to heal, only to state I am sorry for your loss.
       I did, however, after reading the news, take the time to read some of the comments on his death--the lack of sympathy and compassion for his family and the lack of understanding of the disease of addiction was mind boggling. What people fail to realize is that alcoholics and addicts are wired differently than the rest of the population. Their brains process drugs differently and the addictive cravings after too much use for too long a time defy most humans' understanding of how a person could risk all to inject heroin into his body. They can understand the power of a magnet to draw iron filings to it but not the magnet of addiction to attract a human body to the magnet of drugs. Will power once that first drink for an alcoholic or that first shot, first pipe or first pill has been taken by an addict is not more effective in preventing further use  than trying to drag an ocean liner off the reefs at extreme low tide to the safety of an open ocean--does not work!
        We are in a real War on Drugs, both legal and illegal, in which, in the case of illegal drugs, the victims include our justice system susceptible to corruption due to obscene amounts of cash, the filling our jails and prisons with nonviolent drug offenders, severely limiting our ability to meet budgetary requirements for social services and devastating minority families and neighborhoods and the swamping our ER facilities, threatening their insolvency. We have lost this War, pure and simple and while we perform rearguard actions to stem the flow of drugs, it is time to focus on treatment, rehab and self-help and to  take away the dollars from the jails and put them into research on developing drugs and vaccines to prevent the cravings and minimize the highs addicts seek. Until we come to an acceptance that this is a disease not a moral failing of will power, get used to more news headlines like those for Philip Hoffman.
Philip Seymour Hoffman 2014 RIP!
Addiction is a disease, respects no boundaries of race, talent, creed, standing or smarts
When the needle injects, it's a roulette wheel fix sometimes a high and here it stops your heart
Belushi, Joplin, Hendrix, now Huffman who will never see another dawn
Joined by thousands less famous whose deaths unnoticed, mere stats or yawns
Addicts are cursed with an addiction defective gene
Too many drugs, too long becomes so hard then to wean
If there is a hope such that addicts dead with a needle in their arm may decrease
There are vaccines and drugs on the way to block the high illicit drugs will  release
Until then we have to avoid enabling but to try therapy, treatment and self-help like NA
Maybe from the normies some sense of compassion for cravings so hard not to obey
The War on Drugs we daily lose, Huffman's death more proof it has been lost
Worse, Cartels awash in cash and the jails overflowing as just a tip of the total cost
For each addict into a living hell and so far from heaven drugs have sent
Less on prisons and more on rehab and drug research is where money should be spent
Sadly, most, other than the addict's close family, have little compassion, empathy and cannot this disease understand
Probably in honesty could care less that this disease kills our kids, corrupts our justice and is laying waste to this great land.
Parents, hug your children and in their lives be loving and show them to live life with a purpose, life with a resolve,
Or as sure as the Sun, no matter how many clouds, will come up tomorrow, drugs in their lives may become involved!
© February 2, 2014 Michael P. Ridley aka the Alaskanpoet


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