Without a doubt, one of the worst problems extant today in the culture is the addiction to opiates. Even libraries are scrambling to stock NARCON so that they can save lives as people overdose in public lavatories. That said, has America learned nothing from this and how this problem only highlights the failings of the drug war?
Apparently not, since Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has “introduced legislation to restore enforcement power to the Drug Enforcement Administration to target suspicious drug distributors,” according to the Washington Examiner. This is just a retread of everything that has led to bloodshed, street gangs, and out of control addiction since drug prohibition began!
The drug companies fought against such overreach before, during the Obama administration. He quickly gave in to them and rolled back the power of the DEA. While Big Pharma is known for being quite greedy and surely not caring about anything but their bottom line, they have a point. Why should people who are in pain and in need of such medicine face hurdles because some others abuse the same drugs?
Manchin’s bill “would restore the DEA’s authority to go after suspicious drug distributors that divert powerful painkillers to corrupt doctors who distribute them,” but if those policies worked, there would have been no uptick to start with. This is the same tactic which has failed the nation since Nancy Reagan said, “Just say no” and no one listened.
“This bill will make sure that the DEA regains the legal authority that was wrongly stripped from the agency in 2016 to ensure that they can go after companies taking advantage of the system, including those companies that send millions of opioid pills to tiny towns in West Virginia,” the lawmaker opined.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee is also looking into “eight bills that address the tide of the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl and would expand treatment options.” While treatment is certainly a strong need today, even that is best handled on the state level, not the federal. There is nothing in the Constitution that would imply that this is the role of Uncle Sam because it is not.
Committee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR) said that such bill to “restore powers” is not in “the works,” thus adding a touch of confusion to the topic. He claims that they are waiting to hear from the agency.
The fact is that, be it Tide Pods or pot, whatever a person chooses to ingest is up to them. There is no reason for those who are in need of pain medicine for an injury or illness to suffer because some people can not police themselves any more than there is a reason not do laundry because people eat the detergent.
There is no reason to spur the gang wars on by making drugs harder to move, either. That is all that has been done so far as the drug war carries on and there is no reason to suggest that it will have a different outcome this time.
Sadly, far too many lawmakers have failed to learn this very timely lesson.