I come from a long line of alcoholics. My brother died from a bleeding ulcer after two tours of duty in Vietnam, My mom was a heavy drinker until she reached 70-years-old and then she stopped suddenly without a reason why. I drank a lot when I was in my twenties, but now I limit myself to two drinks and I haven’t broken that rule for some twenty years.
I strongly favor the legalization of marijuana. I don’t do that any more either, but if you compare it to alcohol, which is legal, it is much less harmful. The only reason it is illegal today is because DuPont Chemical didn’t want hemp to compete with its newly developed synthetic fibers back in the twenties.
According to Medical News Today: “Alcohol is the most damaging drug to the drinker and others overall, Heroin and crack are the second and third most harmful, “
While cigarettes were not included in the study, they also rank near the top in regards to damage to individuals and to society as a whole.
The study was conducted so policy makers can accurately access the effect of the drugs on individuals and society and pass legislation accordingly.
The researchers had previously tried to rank illicit drugs on a scale of just how harmful they could be, not only to the individual’s health, but also to society as a whole. The older study sparked a lot of controversy and was later discarded because there were some doubts about how accurate the rankings were.
One drug that I was surprised didn’t make the top three is crystal methamphetamine, or the “poor man’s heroin.” Crystal meth is highly addictive, easily made, and produces a very short “high.” Sometimes you can get addicted by just trying it one time.
The drug is also devastating to the person’s health. They quickly become emaciated and lose their teeth and break out in sores. It doesn’t take long for this horrible drug to produce death. I’ve personally seen its effects.
Some of the nine criteria used to rank the drugs include: harm to the person’s physical health, harm to mental health, loss of relationships, and loss of personal property. In other words, the addict will sell his personal possessions to obtain the drug.
I wonder about the old truism that a heroin addict will kill to obtain the drug, but an alcoholic won’t? I think that most people would agree that it’s not a good thing to be addicted to any of the top three.