Focus on drugs, not gun violence

Ron Arnoldsen


This opinion piece will stir the “pot” and will have some saying I am bizarre. However, I choose to think that I have vision and the rest of the country wears bifocals.

I am somewhat amazed that folks are so focused on gun violence. It would seem to me that those parents that are concerned about their children not coming home from school due to an active shooter should also be very concerned about their children losing their life to drugs. They are more likely to be introduced to drugs in school than be shot.

More people die of drug related deaths each year than gun violence.

Losing their life doesn’t only mean dying, they can lose their potential, their hopes, their family, and their jobs due to drug addiction. In short, a life is wasted and lost.

How many children say they want to be an alcoholic or drug addict when they grow up? They want to be firefighters, police officers, play professional sports, doctors, computer programmers etc.
Their hopes, ambition and futures are snatched from them due to alcohol and drug use. They have lost their lives and dreams. Here is a bumper sticker you will never see, “I am the proud parent of an alcoholic/drug addict?”

Everyone I know has a friend, relative or friend of a friend who has lost the potential of a good life due to drugs. I do not know of a friend, relative or friend of a friend who has lost their child to gun violence (I know I am probably lucky). But we all know someone who has wasted their life through addiction.

We deplore the fact someone’s loved one loses their life randomly to violence. However, we embrace drugs and alcohol even though they randomly take our loved ones lives daily.

Yes, marijuana is the savior of our state. It will generate a great deal of tax revenue and bring prosperity to the general funds of all government agencies. I know I am bazar. But where is your outrage over the loss of your children’s potential? Where are the mothers against drug sales and abuse?

What is the underlying cause of homelessness, the huge number of individuals in prison and our mental health facilities? I am bizarre enough to think there is a very large correlation with substance abuse.

We are focused on the guns and not the mental health of the individuals who are behind them. Where are the mothers who advocate for greater mental health awareness programs?

Where are the mothers who will take a stand against substance abuse and the violence and death associated with it? Are our politicians whores for grabbing the money associated with legal drugs and disregarding the cost of abuse?