While the political elite stands idle eating each other alive, the country slides further into an epidemic of epic proportions. There is not a community from coast to coast immune from opioid addiction, and it has infiltrated every color, class creed and religion. Quite simply every single person in America today is at risk of contracting this deadly disease. A disease that steals 70,000 lives and counting, every year. So why the public service announcement in this arena?
Quite often I am grilled by parents, family and friends, as to the reason I invest so much time, effort and money in organized softball. Of course many of them quickly assume the relentless journey is the pursuit of the elusive college scholarship. Although there may be some truth to that assumption, the greater truth is I am simply TERRIFIED.
Even the casual internet researcher would know opioids, specifically Heroin are highly addictive. There is no such thing as a casual opioid user. There are only opioid addicts. There are really only two scenarios for the first time user, Addiction or Death. Experts concur that heroin addiction occurs almost instantly, and they further concur the rate of recovery from this addiction is exceptionally low. In the 1920's Heroin purity in the United States was around 5%. Today purity levels hover around 99% in almost every US market. Even an inhaled dose by a first time user can very easily result in death. An individual who has zero tolerance simply cannot handle a 99% dose, where an addict whose tolerance is rising with every dose can survive. Very toxic and deadly additives such as fentanyl greatly enhance the high for addicts but greatly enhance the chances of death for the casual user.
My philosophy is simple and one of fear. If my kid is at the field or in the gym every day and on the weekends, then they are not left to their own devices out on the streets. If the cost of hitting lessons, club teams and weekend tournaments can help keep my children safe, then so be it. College Scholarship or not.
I am terrified by what I see in my own suburban community. If you think this has not affected yours, then you need to remove your head from the sand and open your eyes.