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Trump brings drastic idea to opioid epidemic

by Kristina Livingston - Executive Editor
Tue, Mar 27th 2018 09:00 pm
The opioid epidemic has had a hold on America for a while now. In an effort to combat that, President Trump has proposed a new method for combating this epidemic at the source. However,  some think the idea is a bit too drastic.
The opioid epidemic has had a hold on America for a while now. In an effort to combat that, President Trump has proposed a new method for combating this epidemic at the source. However, some think the idea is a bit too drastic.

If someone does a disservice to their name, to their family or perhaps their community, and makes a mistake in the eyes of the law, whose place is it to demand justice in the most extreme form, requesting the cessation of the individual’s life? Certainly not President Donald Trump’s, if I may be so bold to say, particularly in the shocking context of his call for the death penalty to be imposed upon drug dealers who feed into the opiate crisis.

At a press conference back in October of 2017, Trump declared the opioid crisis to be a public health emergency in the United States, as it causes the deaths of over 100 Americans each day, according to The Washington Post. Alright man, you’re off to an acceptable start. Someone somewhere allowed him to go home dwelling on this topic for far too long. Now we have headlines akin to crises in the Philippines, where the nation’s president has led a murderous tirade against drug dealers for years.

“As U.S. opioid crisis grows, Trump calls for death penalty for dealers,” according to The Washington Post. Hold up, what? This man’s sexual assault accusations are more than you can count on two fingers, he handles the responsibility of our nation’s leader childishly while weaving in and out of scandals which always seem to go unresolved and unaccounted for in the eyes of congress – and now you’re going to sit there and tell me he has blatantly stated opioid dealers don’t deserve to live? Flooring.

There is absolutely no doubt that opioid dealers contribute directly to lifetimes of pain and suffering, and often, death. Yet, as with many crimes, a person should not defined by their mistakes and I truly believe, above all else, there is an infinite amount of better ways to mend these mistakes through rehabilitation.

As stated previously, this is not an unprecedented focus of a nation — both Singapore and the Philippines embarked on nationwide missions. Their missions were to eradicate drug dealers from the premises.

According to axios.com, “Trump has said he would love to have a law to execute all drug dealers here in America, though he's privately admitted it would probably be impossible to get a law this harsh passed under the American system.” 

 This man is not only unfit to run a country, but seems incapable of valuing life that isn’t part of his lineage of old money entrepreneurs with miserable faces.There is not one single shred of evidence to support the claim that sentencing drug dealers to death will benefit or save any of the U.S. population of addicts. According to nbcnews.com, these dealers already lead high-risk lives, many in understanding of the danger they could face at any moment. It is time for those crying out for dealers to receive the death penalty to understand that removing one from the streets is not a one and done deal; these people are replaced almost instantly. More importantly, that they may just be crying out for the deaths of those they believe to be less deserving of life. 

It is important to also consider the scientifically supported fact that an active threat of the death penalty is not successful in deterring criminals from future crime, and for those that value money over human life, this may sway you — the very act of committing one person to death is an expensive process. 

But then again, there are those who would rather their tax dollars go to taking away life rather than uplifting it in a different context — say, to aid those struggling in poverty who are at risk of becoming involved in a life of drugs and violence, or to fund legislation that may create prevention and recovery programs for opioid addicts.

As stated by nbcnews.com, “Street level dealers are essentially entry level employees of large illicit businesses: they are infinitely replaceable. Every drug dealer taken off the streets is immediately replaced.”

The argument for this is pointless and cruel. Sure, it’s backed by the president, but what kind of capital does such a statement of fact hold in this day and age?


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