Monday, October 28, 2013

Creating the Real Walking Dead

The timing of the news about the new heroin-like drug, Krokodil hitting Wisconsin couldn't have come at a more apropos time, with Halloween on the horizon.  This nasty new, man-made drug, which originated in Russia, is comprised of crushed codeine pills and a mixture of chemicals, like gasoline, lighter fluid and other toxic substances.

Apparently, officials had their first patient in Eau Claire, exhibiting the effects of Krokodil.  The drug literally makes abusers resemble crocodiles, as it rots their flesh from the inside-out, creating a real zombie appearance.  I watched two YouTube videos and couldn't finish either one, as I was choking back the vomit.  The flesh of the abuser was literally gone in one case, revealing only bone, where once a calf muscle existed.  His foot, a mere glob of dead flesh.  If you think you can stomach it, feel free to watch it here.  YouTube has deemed this video to be so horrifically graphic, that they require you to enter a birthdate to prove you are old enough to view it.

There are other videos, but this one is the earliest documentation of the effects that I could find.  It was put up approximately two years ago, which means that it's taken about two years for the vile drug to get to Wisconsin.  Why here? Well, much like a band on tour, it makes sense to pick up another gig between shows. La Crosse and Eau Claire are stopping points between Minneapolis and Chicago.

According to sources, Krokodil is a more potent high and cheaper too, with a going rate of $2 vs. $20 for heroin.  For a junkie, that would be attractive and they are not likely considering the advertising mantra, that you get what you pay for, when it comes to products.  The life expectancy of a Krokodil user is about two years.

I read a lot of Facebook posts over the weekend by people who are outraged at those who could do this drug.  I used to echo those thoughts too, until the fear that someone I love might be tempted to use it.  It's easy to cast dispersions on drug users.  To you and I, it seems like the most stupid thing in the world to do.  We like to be in control of our lives and would NEVER succumb to something like that!  Only junkies do that!

But who are the junkies?  How are they "created?"

Junkies are simply put, somebody's son or daughter.   Somebody's brother or sister.  Somebody's nephew or niece.  More specifically, they are someone who needs help in dealing with some inner problems, but never got that assistance to overcome their demons.  Demons that originated from years of child abuse perhaps, or the effects of seeing awful things during wartime, or even an undiagnosed chemical imbalance.

Not everyone has the "tools" to deal with such adversity.  Some people actually need professional help and many never receive it, whether it's because of their ability to hide or mask their challenges, or their inability to pay for services like therapy or counseling.  Add to that, the stigma of getting therapy, and it makes an already difficult situation virtually impossible.  When you consider this, it's not so hard to understand people who find themselves susceptible to the lure of drugs.  It's an easy way to placate their pain, with an impulsive purchase.

We humans have the propensity to make horrible decisions.  And addictions are a tough thing to beat, particularly on your own.

I have no answers, other than to try harder not to judge those who have riddled their bodies with drugs.  They obviously need some help and have slipped through the cracks in life.  But most importantly, they are somebody's son or daughter and are worthy of love and help... even if they act like they don't want it.  

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