I am from a small town that is living in the wake of an epidemic started by Oxycontin. I cannot possibly remember the names of the vast numbers of friends, and friends of friends that have become addicted to this drug.
Some years ago, there was a dealer that I visited regularly. He was a sickly man, in a wheelchair and had dialysis performed on him twice weekly. He was also a scumbag, though I don’t want to get bogged down in detail. His routine was doctor shopping, obtaining and then selling oxycontin. One day, I got word he may be selling to someone very dear to me. I went to him and said that under no circumstances was it okay with me for him to sell to this person. I also warned him that if I found out, I would report him.
Later that year I found out he was in fact doing what I heard. So making good on my word, I went to the police. I was in the methadone clinic (thinking I was clean) by this time, so it wasn’t hurting my supply. Anyway, I went to the police and had a sit down with the head drug guy. I was surprised to find out they already knew everything I was telling them. They knew he doctor shopped, knew he was selling, and even knew he was a scumbag.
Why didn’t they arrest him then I asked? Because it would cost the prison too much to house him they said. That was their answer to me! This is a guy who had a large hand in starting the oxycontin epidemic in my small town. Something I predicted to the police he would do by the way. However, as I began thinking about it, I realized that the sickly scumbag wasn’t the one truly responsible. I did some research, and became convinced that Purdue Pharma needed to be graced with that title.
Oxycontin is a drug that Purdue Pharma released in 1995, supposedly for chronic pain. I think it is plain to see now however, that this company knew it was creating a drug many people would abuse. This could not be made any clearer when three of Purdue Pharma’s top execs plead guilty in 2007 to criminal charges. They admitted their company had misled doctors and patients by saying that Oxycontin was less prone to abuse than similar drugs because it was a long-acting narcotic.
Purdue Pharma was basically saying that because of Oxycontin’s outer, time released coating, it was “long acting”. It is actually long acting when taken as directed because the drug is time released over a 12 hour period. I’m thinking this is what allowed Purdue Pharma to get away with putting such powerful pain pills on the market. Until that point, one of the strongest, regularly used pain pills was a 5mg Percocet.
5mg Percocet has 5mgs of Oxycodone with 500mgs of acetominophen (tylenol). Oxycontin comes as strong as 80mgs of straight oxycodone. Tell me how any of us with even a sliver of the addictive nature had a chance? Can’t you just picture the glee in their eyes, as these three yo-yo’s dreamed up this mega pill? Do you think for a second they didn’t know thousands would be addicted in a short time? By the same token, do you think they didn’t know that people would begin chewing the pills up, effectively nullifying the time release and giving the person an insta-high?
It would be alright though, because the methadone clinics were waiting in the wings to welcome all the new-born pill heads. They were there to shift the addiction from oxycontin to the lifesaving drug methadone. Thank goodness they left the light on for us right? Wrong! Rest assured I have plenty of rage in store for those fine folks. Just feel like I need to wait until I’m completely clean first. Lest the unethical dip shits get wind of it and throw me out on my ear before I’m fully detoxed. I don’t think for a second they would hesitate to do it either.
Quickly, I have one more thing to say. I know some people may think that going to the police made me a rat. Others may think it made me a hypocrite, and you all may be right on both points. I just knew what the drugs had done to me, and at all costs, I was going to attempt to intervene on behalf of this loved one. It did not help, nor could anyone have helped me (at that point), but I had to try. Lastly, I want it perfectly clear that I am not angry with law with law enforcement. Quite the contrary actually, as I am very pro law enforcement. However, I do feel they dropped they ball on this matter.