Does that Sound Crazy?
By Chief Danny Watson
There is nothing more traumatic than the loss of a child. There are at least some cases where having your eyes open could prevent needless deaths. As a law enforcement officer I constantly have my eyes wide open. Often having our eyes wide open is like the sensation of standing on a train track waiting for the train to hit us. We see what’s coming but are helpless to do anything about it. We can’t protect people from the harm they do to themselves. Does that sound crazy?
Since 2010 about 105 people a day die of drug overdoses in the United States. Most of these deaths can be attributed to prescription drugs not from illegal drugs. These are completely preventable deaths. (teens.drugabuse.gov/blog/post/drug-overdoses-kill-more-than-cars-guns-and-falling) More people die from overdoses than are killed by guns or in car accidents every year. Would it surprise you if I were to tell you that a large majority of these overdoses came from medicine cabinets? Does that sound crazy?
A death that does not have to happen and is 100 percent preventable is especially frustrating. An alarming trend of teenagers coming to a tragic end because of prescription drugs is on the rise. What do you see when you look at an old fashioned medicine cabinet? Do you see your reflection? When I look at them I see a skull and crossed bones. I see that because my eyes are wide open. Does that sound crazy?
There is an explosive trend of teenagers raiding medicine cabinets to get high. They combine different kinds of pills with no idea of what the result of taking them will be. We have a responsibility to get rid of the prescriptions that are no longer needed. The more addictive or the higher the abuse potential there is the faster we should get rid of them. Reducing access to these dangerous drugs can only help to curb the problem. The lives you save may be those of your children or your grandchildren. Does that sound crazy? What it sounds like is prevention through perseverance and having your eyes wide open.
Chief Danny Watson MPA FBI NA # 228, Chief of Police for City of Darlington, has been on the Darlington Police Department since 1994 and Chief since 2011.
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