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ALAN CHARTOCK: We need to declare war on drug addiction

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New York State is not alone in its drug inundation. We’ve all been watching the heroin scourge threatening to drown us just as surely as the rising water levels in our oceans threaten the same thing.

We really don’t understand why our children too often turn to drugs. I recently went to an emergency room where a staff member told me that they could hardly keep up with all the young people coming to the facility, some of whom could hardly be understood, so slurred and incomprehensible was their speech.

The politicians hardly know what to do about the problem. One simple answer for so many of them is to call for the availability of Narcan for those who overdose. That, of course, is important but it is just treating the symptoms. It hardly gets to the problem. It’s important but it doesn’t help me understand why any thinking person, clearly having been warned about the consequences of heroin addiction, would put that stuff in their bodies. Obviously, many of them are in great mental or physical pain. Many feel hopeless. They have no hope for jobs or advanced education or even for places to go in their daily lives. So, they turn to drugs.

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