In the wake of collapse


“Drug deaths, fueled by prescription drug overdoses, now surpass motor vehicle deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” from an article on Yahoo! News, http://news.yahoo.com/houstons-death-spurs-look-her-doctors-meds-230640043.html

So why is it that we blame the doctors–did they say to take the xanax with alcohol? Probably not. Only in the case of Michael Jackson does a physician seem rightfully questioned for some serious lapses in judgement — administering a drug used in anesthesia to a known intravenous opiate user is clearly a sign of a doc who’s lost his way.

But this latest ‘celebrity’ death? Why is it the doctor’s fault when celebrity’s over-indulge and underestimate their resilience? And why do we care more about them than the guy on skid row who became a junkie after his father beat him to a pulp his whole childhood or the girl who was raped hides in some sort of inebriated mess of an existence? No, we mourn the celebrities, forgive them their excesses, while continuing to demonize anyone our daughters may come into contact with (a junkie who became that way because his pain went untreated by the medical establishment — found pain killers and then, what are you gonna do?). Or the crack head or speed freak who started off just recreationally–like the banker or the barmaid down the street. We forgive you if you don’t get into the hard stuff. We eulogize you if you do the hard stuff and come out the other side, as long as you’re a successful pop star or favorite movie star. And if you happen to die when too much of everything is NOT enough (my take on the Grateful Dead/Robert Hunter lyrics)–well, then we feel really, really sorry in a way we only reserve for public figures.

Try applying some of this mercy and forgiveness to the next ‘bum’ you see and think, ‘Oh, that could never be me,’ from your BMW with your iPhone5 and over-priced everything. Oh, and when your doctor says don’t mix with alcohol, maybe forget you are a celebrity with lots of comebacks still to come, and act like a mere human.

I am deeply respectful of anyone’s memory when they die, as we say ‘tragically,’ but I just question why a celebrity’s death is considered ‘tragic’ when every day on Skid Row, people are suffering and most people just scoff and say, “They deserve what they had coming to them, good riddance.”

Poor form for the lost and broken. Just as it is pathetic to me how we treat people in death so differently than when they were alive. All of a sudden, people are coming out of the woodwork with kind words for someone who a few years ago they would have dismissed as a has-been crackhead.

Hypocrisy at its finest. Here was a desperate woman, sad and belligerent in her final appearances, who didn’t have anyone close to her who really understood how to help her. Sad, very sad.

Now I can go back to my own suffering and how I sometimes don’t want to live myself. Not when I can’t even make a living and I am expected to survive on $ 30 for 3 weeks after rent took all my unemployment and I can’t find a job to save my soul.

One thought on “In the wake of collapse

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