Chris Christie Hopes to Push Addiction Treatment, Not Punishment
In the fall, Chris Christie spoke out on drug rehabilitation to New Hampshire voters. The Governor of New Jersey shared the heartbreaking story of his own mother’s personal troubles with cigarettes. He explained her losing the fight to lung cancer at age 71, “Nobody came to me and said ‘don’t treat her because she got what she deserved.’ Yet somehow, things are not the same when it comes to heroin or cocaine.”
Christie’s attentive audience learned about the politician’s personal story of a friend from law school at Seton Hall University School of Law in New Jersey. The friend eventually became an editor of the Law Review, married a gorgeous woman, had three beautiful children and maintained a healthy body into his forties. “The guy had everything,” Christie said.
Eventually, the gentleman hurt his back. As a result, he was put on prescription pain killers and became addicted to Percocet. It wasn’t long before the professional was kicked out of his house, got divorced and lost the right to see his own kids. Not only did he lose his family, but he lost all of his money and could no longer practice law. Unfortunately, Christie’s friend was found dead at age 52 from Percocet and vodka. “He was a drug addict. He couldn’t get help, and now he is dead,” Christie explained.
Do Not Penalize Those in Need of Substance Abuse Treatment
“It can happen to anyone. And so we need to start treating people in this country, not jailing them. We need to give them the tools they need to recover, because every life is precious. Every life is an individual gift from God. And we have to stop judging and start giving them the tools they need to get better.”
As explained by Christie, drug addiction treatment needs to be accessible to everybody. Much of the problem that middle and upper-class American men and women face is prescription narcotics. Too often, potentially lethal prescription pain killers are pushed by greedy salesmen and overprescribed by doctors.
Drug Addiction Treatment Has No Concern for Race, Creed or Color
A drug or alcohol addiction does not care if you are rich or poor, white, black, Asian, Hispanic, Christian or Jewish. Sorry Nancy Reagan, but not enough folks are saying “no” to drugs, whether they are from the street or your local drug store. Rather than filling up our jails, we need to assist all of our troubled citizens to overcome their potentially fatal addictions. With high quality drug and alcohol treatment, topped with vocational training and life skills counseling, we can overcome the addiction epidemic plaguing this nation.
How exactly an individual grew into an addict is not nearly as crucial as helping him or her to overcome their problem. Rather than throw them in jail, our community needs to do everything possible to help those in need of substance abuse treatment. When Chris Christie’s mother was dying of lung cancer, the system did not turn its back on her for smoking cigarettes. Rather, they did everything possible to assist her battle against cancer. Why should addiction treatment to illegal narcotics be handled any differently?