Paul Schlosser-Moller

LETTERS: Dangers well-known but ignored

Editor:

Re: ‘Dangers of fentanyl must be known,’ Nov. 25.

Editor:

Re: ‘Dangers of fentanyl must be known,’ Nov. 25.

When I read your headline, ‘Dangers of fentanyl must be known,’ initially I read this to mean ‘Dangers of fentanyl must (surely) be known (by now).’

But no, on reading the attached piece, it was actually in the sense of ‘Dangers of fentanyl must be (made) known.’

How could any sentient being in B.C. not know the dangers of fentanyl by now? Especially that sub-culture putting such narcotics into their mouths and into their veins, many of whom seem to spend so much of their lives ‘connected’ via their smartphones?

Now you report: “It’s a message that Surrey-White Rock MLA Gordon Hogg said needs to get out without delay.”

What other health messages does Hogg need to get out?

That if you choose to smoke tobacco, your health will suffer and smoking may actually kill you?

That if you choose to stop on train tracks when a train is coming, you’ll be killed? That if you choose to jump into deep water but cannot swim, you’ll drown?

That if you choose to drive while impaired, you may kill someone else? That if you choose to have unprotected sex, an unwanted pregnancy or an STD may result? That if you choose not to vote locally, you cannot then complain you are powerless to stop highrise development? That if you choose to drop out of school early, your earning potential will likely suffer?

That if you choose not to have your children immunized against serious communicable diseases, they may contract them? Even, that if you choose to go out in the rain without a raincoat, you’ll get wet and may catch a cold?

The list is endless.

What is important is that these are all choices people can make. But what exactly is it people don’t get about the bad consequences of their bad choices? Such bad choices are rarely made out of ignorance but rather of stupidity.

Because we don’t live in a totalitarian state, people in Canada still enjoy the freedom to choose whether or not to engage in such risky behaviours. For example, we don’t impose prohibition to try and stop drunk drivers, but instead we provide treatment for alcoholics. The same applies to drug addicts who, at least initially, choose to use the drugs that may eventually kill them.

No, this fentanyl tragedy is the collateral damage of this particular choice – the blameless, heartbroken relatives and friends, the straining of already-overstretched health-care resources, the burnout now being seen in first-responders, not to mention the enormous costs to the public at large. It is these people, left to pick up the pieces and to shoulder an often intolerable burden, who are most deserving of our sympathy and gratitude.

So, please, let’s get real with your headline. The dangers of fentanyl are well-known, but some people simply opt to ignore them. It’s their right to do so, but they should be enormously grateful most of us feel responsibility to look after the destructive outcomes.

Not all societies are so benevolent towards what is, after all, an extreme form of a self-inflicted illness, but let’s not pretend people are ignorant of just how foolish are the choices they make, nor suggest they need Hogg to fill them in on their stupidity.

Gerard Ponsford, White Rock

 

 

 

Just Posted

VIDEO: Surrey Vaisakhi Parade floods Newton streets

Hundreds of thousands of people attended the annual event

Setting the stage for emerging performers

Variety fundraiser and ongoing open-mics showcase local talent

VAISAKHI EXPLAINED: Founding of the Khalsa was a seminal event in Sikh history

There are five K’s – articles of faith – worn by baptized Sikhs

Four Surrey students head to New Brunswick for Canada-wide science fair

Three projects move to nationals following regional fair at KPU

Man ‘seriously’ injured in crash after driving wrong way on Highway 17: Surrey RCMP

Police say the sedan hit a transport truck, then another car

Dashcam captures close call between minivan, taxi at busy Vancouver intersection

To make the footage more nerve-wracking, a pedestrian can be seen standing at the corner

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

Most Read

l -->