I would think that from a Social Politics point of view regarding Illicit or Legal Drug Marketplaces, that it should be the perogative of the Attorney General AND Surgeon General TO COOPERATE AT A FUNDAMENTAL LEVEL and do a BASIC research program and an accompanying long-term study (4 years+) of WHY Americans in general WANT to medicate themselves into a general stupor thus allowing such drug marketing and general addiction to arise.
YES! I know many patients are using because of actual physical pain from general or specific medical complications and ailments BUT I think there is an underlying "Belly-of-the-Beast" social aspect to this widespread drug use of ALL kinds. Nobody has really asked and answered the basic questions of:
1) Why are Americans in so much psychological and/or physical pain
that it requires you to self-medicate?
- i.e. were you abused at home, school and/or work and require more-specific mental health services?
- i.e. were you in a car accident or were otherwise severely medically injured
that resulted in extreme levels of pain that cannot be easily alleviated?
2) Is there a workplace aspect where not enough time is given to recover
from basic physical ailments thus giving rise to general opiate use?
- i.e. is a solution such as creating a paid and medically MONITORED form of
national short duration Sick Leave that is like Unemployment Insurance viable?
- i.e. Are basic financial needs getting in the way of a viable long-term recovery?
- What workplace programs can be initiated that allows workers to fully recover
yet gives employers some relief from excessive employee absenteeism?
3) Is there excessive "local social persuasion" or general over-marketing of either legal
or illicit drugs such that Americans are being sucked into use of said items.
- i.e. What sort of psychological resistance programs can be started to get youth
and adults to resist and/or defend themselves against such social programming?
Does Just Say NO need to be revived on a widespread national basis?
- Is TV or general Media or specific parts of the internet creating or showing such marketing?
- Can or should those specific parts be regulated and how?
4) Are there specific physical issues with the human body itself that are causing or allowing
more and more Americans to fall susceptible to drug use and addictions?
- i.e. what SPECIFIC brain or neuro-chemical receptors are causing addictions?
- What ethnotypes or genotypes are more or less susceptible to specific drugs or classes of drugs?
- Why are those receptors there in the first place? Which ones make
it more likely that a given population or geno-type is susceptible to addiction?
- Are there viable medical/physical counteractives to such receptors that either
tone down or eliminate such addiction-causing activities?
- What immediate lifestyle and/or environmental variables are there that will affect addiction
behaviour or the basic strength of any given drug addiction? How can they be mitigated?
5) What aspects of the American Legal System and Medical System are exacerbating addiction behaviour?
- Are the legal penalties such that they cause perverse incentives for drug addiction continuation?
- Are the criminally convicted having such a rod put on their backs by sentencing and/or punishment
terms that there is no hope of breaking the addiction cycle? i.e.
i.e. Cant get employment due to harsh legal sentencing terms or overlong police record-keeping.
- is too much policing the problem?
- is too much concentration of illicit drug dealers within prison/jail systems
allowing ad-hoc marketing networks to form thus creating actual demand and supply?
6) What physical aspects of American Rural and/or Urban communities are giving rise
to concentrations of drug use and addiction behaviour?
- Is there too much or too little affordable public housing in a given area?
- Are financially or socially-defined population groups concentrating in specific locales
that allow addiction or drug marketing to arise or be continued?
- What are the specific physical or social attractors that bring in more and more
like-minded people that are susceptible to drug use or drug production?
- Are there natural environmental or human-built physical obstacles within communities
that are causing areas of high drug use or production to arise or continue?
- How can those obstacles be removed or mitigated affordably?
- Are there specific types or combinations of street-layout, common area lighting,
policing outreach facilities and/or religious worship or charity-based groups that
giving rise to an "Addictions Industry" or "Keep-em-All-Poor-and-Addicted" mentality?
Are those community service groups actually part of the problem?
- Should those services or groups be withdrawn from a given area
and/or how can their unanticipated negative effects be mitigated?
ALL THESE basic questions have NOT been asked and answered in a scientifically SOUND and methodically researched manner! Until we ask the BASIC questions of WHY and HOW humans physically or psychologically use drugs and WHY and HOW they get addicted amongst a large statistically significant sample group, we will NEVER be able to offer any series of small or large steps to reduce or even eliminate physical addiction and its detrimental behaviours in humans.