Why Do We Have A Society On Drugs
The United States is a world leader in many ways. We have one of the largest populations in the world. The American economy, despite its recent problems, is still among the most vibrant and affluent. Our military is one of the largest in terms of manpower, and it holds a position of undisputed domination in terms of capabilities. American pop culture sets the trends in most areas of the globe, and people in nearly every nation of the world buy products that were either made in the United States or are sold by American companies. For all of the ways in which the United States is distinguished for positive characteristics, there are also negative aspects to the situation. Perhaps the worst is the fact that American society is, by and large, a society on drugs. In 2010, the Centers for Disease Control reported that more than 10% of Americans use at least one prescription medication every month, and nearly half use 5 or more drugs on a monthly basis. As bad as that was, the problem is getting worse. Earlier this year, the Mayo Clinic reported that 70% of the population uses one drug, and half are using two or more. These figures are in addition to the estimated 22 million Americans using illegal street drugs, people of all ages and from all walks of life. For example, the 2012 Monitoring the Future survey, published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA), found that more than a third of high school seniors uses marijuana.
Living in a Brave New World
The current state of affairs has been described as an epidemic of drug abuse, and it certainly does portend bad things for the future. With more and more people in the United States using drugs, we can expect to see general levels of physical and mental health decline, while levels of economic production and the overall vitality of the drop can be expected to drop as well. Despite the fact that the federal government continues to spend billions of dollars every year to fight the War on Drugs, the United States continues to suffer from the plague of drugs. Why are things the way they are? There are many reasons. One of them has to do with the current mindset into which Americans are indoctrinated concerning drugs. To a large degree, people in the United States are taught from a very young age that the natural thing to do when feeling a pain or other type of discomfort is to take a pill. This starts out with taking a Tylenol for a fever or an Advil for a headache, but it easily leads into using OxyContin or Vicodin for chronic back pain, which very often results in addiction. Americans are, furthermore, increasingly being told that the answer to their emotional disturbances is to pop a pill. Children who have difficulty focusing in school or obeying their parents are now more and more being put on Adderall or Ritalin, while adults who suffer from depression or anxiety often wind up taking SSRIs such as Paxil, Zoloft or Prozac, or an anti-anxiety drug such as Xanax. In the past, it was already common for people to drink away their sorrows with alcohol, but now even the doctors are promoting using chemicals to get rid of unpleasant feelings.
Manufacturing America’s Drug Addiction
While the widespread acceptance of using drugs — street drugs or medication — to get rid of upsets and discomforts may largely explain America’s problems with drugs, they do not represent the full picture. On the other side of the coin, we have to recognize the fact that there is enormous money to be made in selling drugs. Those who do make their living off drugs, whether they are part of an international drug trafficking organization smuggling in heroin or cocaine, or if they work for Big Pharma, stand to gain by promoting further drug use in American society. Naturally, these parties will do what they can to make drugs more popular. This can take the form of pressuring members of the entertainment industry to portray drugs in a positive light to make them seem cool or at least normal. It can also take the form of outright advertising during prime time and in the pages of magazines, as is so common in the case of pharmaceutical drugs of all types. The drug industry is doing what it can to sell more of their products, and they are doing a very good job of marketing to the American people. If one wishes to do something effective to turn this situation around, it is important to first recognize that drugs are being actively pushed on society, as is mentioned in the new Narconon book, Ending Addiction.
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