ABC news has a compelling and tragic story of Iraq War veterans struggling with drug addiction. The stress of combat, failure of prescription meds, and easy access to controlled substances (despite 70 years of prohibition) has turned some veterans into addicts.
I hope we treat the soldiers better than the average drug defendant. I challenge any drug warrior to argue for the arrest of these brave soldiers.
Not every American who is an addict is overcoming the stress of war. This story highlights that addiction is a disease with different causes. These soldiers deserve help and treatment, not jail.
Someday all addicts will be treated the same way.
Here’s a quote from an injured hero-
Combat engineer William Swenson was injured on what
was to be his final mission in Iraq when his vehicle drove over a 200-pound
improvised explosive device. The blast injured Swenson’s spine, and he developed
syringomyelia — a condition in which cysts form on the spinal cord.
Swenson said a laundry list of prescribed painkillers was ineffective
so he turned to marijuana, the only substance that he said would numb his
physical and emotional pain. Swenson failed a drug test after testing positive
for marijuana as well as cocaine.
Godspeed to all soldiers fighting overseas, or battling addiction at home.