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(Guardian)   Prisoners set to win cash settlements from government after being unable to use heroin in jail, arguing cold turkey withdrawal was tantamount to assault   (guardian.co.uk) divider line 149
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4345 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Nov 2006 at 1:51 AM (8 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2006-11-13 03:55:21 AM  
My point is that when we were discussing his addiction, the very same people who come in here and write "string 'em up" were the very ones making excuses for him.

There's a huge double standard when it comes to crime in this country. A person who is rich and white stands to get much less punishment from the law and much more sympathy from the general public than a person who is poor and black, or poor and hispanic, or poor and american indian, or even poor and white.

That, and the idea of celebrating killing ANYBODY whether you feel they deserve it or not is pretty repulsive. Especially if their crime is addiction.
 
2006-11-13 03:55:42 AM  
MWeather, whether it is a bad thing or not depends on the perspective.

I posted the article earlier why just because we make it legal doesn't mean we remove the black market for it. Many things have a black market that are legal: body parts (we obviously can all own body parts, and in a hospital we can recieve them legally from a donor), guns (just have to wait those few days and pass a simple background check), tobacco (just have to be 18 and pay the extra tax), alcohol, DVDs, CDs, etc etc.

There are many homeless people who would rob someone for enough cash to go buy alcohol. Do not kid yourself on that one, however a lot like you said do get enough from getting spare change and harassing people.

The smart ones collect cans, lol. However, some people actually steal peoples collected cans to pay for their alcohol and drug problems. Some use violence.

I do not think we should legalize hard drugs. Drugs like marijuana and shrooms and stuff like that is fine to legalize.

Damn it I am tired and I am starting to forget what I am argueing again, lol.
 
2006-11-13 03:57:58 AM  
rga184, there is a double standard for a reason. When you are rich and have money, you can pay for your drugs (with usually legally made money). If you are poor and a drug addict, you usually have to steal to pay for your drugs. See the reasoning behind that double standard? It's not about whether you do the drugs, its about how you pay for them and what you do after taking them.
 
2006-11-13 04:04:54 AM  
GenesisExodus
But, do not forget that ours (Canada and the US)'s problem of overcrowded jails. I don't have an answer for that issue...

I do. Legalize drugs.

I don't know the stat for sure, but does anybody out there with more knowledge on the subject know what percentage of US arrests are drug-related?

You also mentioned kids killing kids on the streets. I wonder how many of those deaths deal with drugs directly or indirectly (gang wars, ultimately also drug-related).

There's an article on Time magazine about "bombers row", the supermax security prison where they keep the shoe bomber, the Olympic Park bomber, the 9/11 asswipe, the Unabomber, etc. Trust me, the thought of those guys spending the rest of their lives in that jail is infinitely more pleasant to me than putting a bullet in their head.

I would venture to say that after a year in that jail, if you invited anybody over for dinner and a shot to the head, they'd take you up on it.

And it wouldn't be for the dinner.

Nah, death penalty is too easy. Give them a miserable life inside a cramped, dark jail cell.
 
2006-11-13 04:06:10 AM  
WaffenSS: MWeather, whether it is a bad thing or not depends on the perspective.

Yes, if preventing crime is your concern, it's good. But them so is suspending most constitutional protections.

From the standpoint of justice and the rights of citizens, it's bad.

I posted the article earlier why just because we make it legal doesn't mean we remove the black market for it

Of course. People still moonshine. But how widespread is moonshining, and how much violence does it cause? Not a whole hell of a lot.

Many things have a black market that are legal: body parts (we obviously can all own body parts, and in a hospital we can recieve them legally from a donor), guns (just have to wait those few days and pass a simple background check), tobacco (just have to be 18 and pay the extra tax), alcohol, DVDs, CDs, etc etc.

None of those black markets is anywhere near as violent or widespread as they would be if those activities were totally illegal.
 
2006-11-13 04:09:15 AM  
WaffenSS: When you are rich and have money, you can pay for your drugs (with usually legally made money). If you are poor and a drug addict, you usually have to steal to pay for your drugs.

And we don't need evidence that the poor person comited other crimes. The mere fact they are poor and addicted is reason enough to treat them like a criminal.

It's not about whether you do the drugs, its about how you pay for them and what you do after taking them.

You keep saying that, yet you want them mere act of taking them to be a crime.
 
2006-11-13 04:12:27 AM  
Well I've got work tomorrow and it's getting late, so I'll leave you with a quote.

"The free man owns himself. He can damage himself with either eating or drinking; he can ruin himself with gambling. If he does he is certainly a damn fool, and he might possibly be a damned soul; but if he may not, he is not a free man any more than a dog."

-- GK Chesterton

/woof!
 
2006-11-13 04:14:32 AM  
You do realize you can die from withdrawals from heroin without detox, don't you? You kind of need help to get off it.

Proves the system is fooked and the fools running it are fookeder.
 
2006-11-13 04:18:03 AM  
Waffen

That argument has already been shot down in numerous threads. Even in instances where a person in a poor neighborhood gets busted for pure possession, their sentences and likelyhood of getting thrown in jail are higher. Even in instances where a person from a rich suburb gets busted for a drug-related crime, they are much more likely to be sentenced to rehab at a cushy facility.

Consider the sentencing guidelines for "yuppie" drugs like coke vs ghetto drugs like crack we had during the 90s. I don't know if those have changed, or if there's not a distinction between what drugs rich and poor kids use anymore, but I have to tell you they did make me wonder.

That, and your assumption that people who can pay for their drugs is erroneous. Think of the Dr. who snorts coke, the mom who ignores her kids to smoke crystal meth, or the oil tanker pilot who drinks off the coast of alaska. I'm sure they can afford their drugs well enough.
 
2006-11-13 04:23:25 AM  
rga184, I wholeheartedly agree. But, it's a fine line as to which drugs are legalized. I am for the legalization of all "natural" drugs, eg. Plants and so-forth. However, there are some chemicals that should just outright be illegal. Heroin, coke, PCP, etc. It's too easy to get outright farked on that stuff.

/Either way. I need sleep.
//Thanks for some stimualtion lads.
 
2006-11-13 04:26:37 AM  
MWeather, I was not for putting away anyone that is poor and addicted, I simply think it acts as a tool to increase the time of often dangerous criminals.

If you pay for your habit legally and do not harm anyone else, then I see no problem with it.

I was simply saying that as it is now, drugs are an easy way to gain legal access to places that are usually harder to get to legally. Do to this fact, law enforcement can often find other illegal things and prevent worse things from happening.

You do a simple traffic stop, you see some weed in the back seat, you use that as reasonable cause to arrest and procede to search the suspects car, it turns out the person is a known gang member, so you search his vehicle and find an ak47 in the trunk.

Now if drugs were legal, you could not have searched that vehicle, and that ak47 would be used later to mow down kids outside a school.

Now, if you wanted to make it were if you are a known member of a (violent) gang then the police can legally search them (however tighten the meaning of a gang so a group of people hanging out cant be searched) then we could legalize drugs, reduce those gangs, make inner cities safer, etc.
 
2006-11-13 04:29:21 AM  
luciferos

Actually, heroin isn't so deadly. The more dangerous withdrawals are from EtOH and Benzodiezepam-like drugs. The long-term adaptation is to up-regulate inhibitory mechanisms as the addiction becomes stronger and stronger. When you finally take the drug away, there's no inhibitory signal to keep other circuits at bay. Blood pressure can shoot up, there are seizures, hallucinations, etc, etc.

That's besides the point though. I still think that forcing somebody through a cold-turkey heroin withdrawal is tantamount to assault. It might not kill you, but it's still a pretty terrible process. A medically supervised program with methodone would have been much more humane.

Yes, I know that there are those out there that think that it's silly to be humane to prisoners. But please tell me who was it that said (paraphrase) "the measure of a man's greatness is not how he treats his friends, but how he treats his enemies."? I would venture to say anthropologists 200 years from now are going to judge us by how we treat EVERYBODY, not just toddlers or unborn fetuses, but also drug addicts in prisons and insurgents in Abu Grhaib (sp?).
 
2006-11-13 04:32:03 AM  
rga184, it isn't cops fault the time, it is usually the jury's and judge's fault for the sentencing. However the likely hood that the person who commited the crimer in the poorer area stole to pay for that drug is higher. Which is howcome the time ends up being higher for that pessession. Where if you are some yuppy, chances are you aren't stealing to pay for it.
 
2006-11-13 04:33:44 AM  
Alright, I am calling it a night, my spelling is turning into crap and I think my arguments might be too, so goodnight.
 
2006-11-13 04:33:53 AM  
Waffen
You do a simple traffic stop, you see some weed in the back seat, you use that as reasonable cause to arrest and procede to search the suspects car, it turns out the person is a known gang member, so you search his vehicle and find an ak47 in the trunk.

Now if drugs were legal, you could not have searched that vehicle, and that ak47 would be used later to mow down kids outside a school.


Wow. When you put it that way, with every drug arrest in the whole country leading to the prevention of kids getting mowed down outside a school, well, it changes my perspective altogether.

Seriously, do you wonder if that kid would be a gang member in the first place if drugs were legalized?
 
2006-11-13 04:35:15 AM  
Waffen
However the likely hood that the person who commited the crimer in the poorer area stole to pay for that drug is higher. Which is howcome the time ends up being higher for that pessession. Where if you are some yuppy, chances are you aren't stealing to pay for it.

You keep telling yourself that. Sure.
 
2006-11-13 04:57:09 AM  
Any real criminal should be able to get his heroin while in the joint. Where's O'Reily when you need him?
 
2006-11-13 04:57:12 AM  
If you never plan on releasing prisoners, then I guess it doesn't matter how you treat them (that is if you want to be a cold hearted bastard). If someday they'll be back on the street, which is the case for the vast majority, it's in the best interests of society to not turn them into monsters.
 
2006-11-13 06:30:30 AM  
"The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons."
--Fyodor Dostoyevski (apocryphal)

Like Martin Niemöller's famous poem, there have been many modifications to this quotation. This source identifies several classifications of people that are often used in the quotation. They range from children, the sick, the elderly, the poor, the handicapped, people with unpopular opinions, and finally, to prisoners.

I find merit in including any of these categories. Unfortunately, in virtually all of them, the conclusions are less than favorable to us.

As many other people have stated, withdrawal can kill. Unless the judge's sentence included "painful withdrawal with a chance of death," this is disgraceful. Even if such a privision is included in sentencing, it's probably a violation of the Eighth Amendment probition on cruel and unusual punishment. (After RTFA'ing, I notice it's in the U.K., which doesn't really change the point. "Cruel and unusual" was taken from English laws, and is also currently included in E.U. law, which the U.K. has agreed to follow).

I support this completely. Appropriate medical treatments for detox should be provided to all prisoners, upon request, no matter how short their stay, or their potential for rehabilitation.
 
2006-11-13 06:32:38 AM  
Jesus, after two edits I still missed "privision"? Bah. Provision. Christ! "Prohibition" too! WTH? This is what I get for being online at 6:30 am...
 
2006-11-13 06:48:48 AM  
Finally, one of these schemes that actually works;

1. Take Drugs
2. Go to jail
3. Profit


I'm off to become a petty criminal; it seems I'll have a better lifestyle than I do now, and earn more too.
 
2006-11-13 07:50:02 AM  
Wow, everyone here is soo smart! Why aren't you all in politics, making the world a better place? You all seem to have the answers, at least that's what you're saying.
 
2006-11-13 08:37:37 AM  
rga184: There's a huge double standard when it comes to crime in this country. A person who is rich and white stands to get much less punishment from the law and much more sympathy from the general public than a person who is poor and black, or poor and hispanic, or poor and american indian, or even poor and white.

If it's any form of consolation, I'm an asshole to everyone regardless of colour, culture of heritage.
 
2006-11-13 08:46:18 AM  
I noticed that one person in this thread knows that heroine withdrawal will not kill you. It just makes you wish you were dead. I also noticed that no one else conceded that point.
Alcohol withdrawal can kill you if it is not managed with a drug like Librium.

To the drug addict apologists in this thread:
1. Addicts will always be addicts. How many times does society need to be asked to pay to save the same person?
2. Addicts will do anything to maintain their addiction. This is one of the main reasons why illegal drug are illegal.

If you think inside of every addict there is a heart of gold you should test that theory out and volunteer at the methadone clinics. When you see, year after year, the same people doing the same thing you will know: there is nothing you can do to force people to become better people.
I've spent a lot of time working with people on the streets that have addiction problems. I've spent a lot of time working with chemical dependency detox and rehab clinics.
I've seen the same people come back time after time for the same thing.
You cannot save them when they don't want to save themselves.
 
2006-11-13 09:02:18 AM  
$2TacoBill: I noticed that one person in this thread knows that heroine withdrawal will not kill you. It just makes you wish you were dead. I also noticed that no one else conceded that point.

That's probably because of the link I posted that says heroin withdrawls can kill you.

Addicts will always be addicts. How many times does society need to be asked to pay to save the same person?

Exactly my point. Why should I pay to house them in jail or unwanted treatment? So long as they don't harm anyone, leave them be.

Addicts will do anything to maintain their addiction. This is one of the main reasons why illegal drug are illegal.

It's also one of the main reasons to legalize it. If you make it expensive through prohibition, they don't stop using, they just commit crimes to get it.
 
2006-11-13 09:02:41 AM  
too bad that it IS technically assault.
 
2006-11-13 09:03:36 AM  
double post:

BC withdrawal is a medical emergency and denying medical treatment is a big no-no.
 
2006-11-13 09:41:52 AM  
I've never heard of opiate withdrawl being lethal. Benzos, perhaps -- perhaps even alcohol. But opiates? I doubt that!
 
2006-11-13 09:45:36 AM  
HEROIN WITHDRAWL CANNOT KILL YOU! (to whoever said that it can)
 
2006-11-13 09:49:41 AM  
ragga_muffin: HEROIN WITHDRAWL CANNOT KILL YOU! (to whoever said that it can)

I suggest you contact the University of Maryland's Center for Substance Abuse Research and tell them they're wrong. There is a contact form at the bottom of the page.

http://www.cesar.umd.edu/cesar/drugs/heroin.asp
 
2006-11-13 09:51:52 AM  
I'd like to go back to the days when the government didn't try to control every aspect of your life.

You want to fark up your life on heroin? Be my guest. Just don't go to the government for the inevitable handout afterwards. Go to a private organization.
 
2006-11-13 09:52:29 AM  
Also, contact the National Institute of Drug Abuse who say that although rare, opiate withdrawl can be fatal:
http://www.nida.nih.gov/ResearchReports/heroin/heroin5.html
 
2006-11-13 10:24:05 AM  
MWeather: It's also one of the main reasons to legalize it. If you make it expensive through prohibition, they don't stop using, they just commit crimes to get it.

Drugs aren't illegal to stop the current addicts. They're illegal to make is less likely that anyone will start using and become addicted. Alcohol is adangerous, addictive, and unhealthy drug, but it's legal, so use is widespread.
 
2006-11-13 10:36:09 AM  
AtomicDragon: Drugs aren't illegal to stop the current addicts. They're illegal to make is less likely that anyone will start using and become addicted.

Do you really think that people refrain from using crack, heroin or meth merely because it is illegal? Do you really think people will start smoking crack and shooting up merely because it is no longer illegal to do so?
 
2006-11-13 10:53:05 AM  
There are some people in this thread I wish could more readily get their hands on some better substances to fark their lives up sooner.
 
Bf+
2006-11-13 11:48:55 AM  
"Drugs aren't illegal to stop the current addicts. They're illegal to make is less likely that anyone will start using and become addicted. Alcohol is adangerous, addictive, and unhealthy drug, but it's legal, so use is widespread."

You may want to reconsider. The legality of drugs and their levels of use are not correlated. Alcohol was widely used during prohibition and the current "war on drugs" is a complete failure when it comes to prevention. Education is the only proven effective way to curb the increase of drug use. Tough drug laws actually tend to do the opposite.

Drugs are almost always illegal to:
A) Imprison/attack immigrants of a particular race or heritage (Blacks, Mexicans, Irish, etc.)
or
B) Increase the value of the drug for more profits.
 
Bf+
2006-11-13 11:56:09 AM  
trappedspirit: "There are some people in this thread I wish could more readily get their hands on some better substances to fark their lives up sooner."

You seem nice.
 
2006-11-13 12:26:22 PM  
If you are using heroin you are dead anyway. Let them rot in prison
 
2006-11-13 12:47:02 PM  
Just a couple of points

1,
Opiate withdrawal can kill, but it is fantastically rare. The inmates were in no danger.

2,
The prisons in the UK do have a methadone program. The point of contention is that the program is short (designed to get people off heroin) as opposed to the programs on the outside (which often appear to have been set up as long term maintaince for addicts) where the methadone never runs out.

3,
This article is from the UK. I don't know how it works in your part of the world but you will not get prison time if you're caught with a personal supply of any drug (even a class A). You can get time if your caught often enough (but you would have to be a complete half wit), dealing or importing.
The reason for so many drug addicts being incarcerated is the crimes they commit to fund their habit (One piece of research for the home office reported that 643 drug addicts were responsible for over 70,000 offences in a single three month period).


To sum this up this is just a bunch of smack head lags who have just won big at the tax payers expense.
 
2006-11-13 12:49:02 PM  
Drug abuse is a choice. The consequences of such choice should be the responsibility of the abuser, not me.

If you use addictive substances for recreation, don't expect me (society) to pay for your withdrawal treatment.
 
2006-11-13 01:14:07 PM  
MWeather Do you really think that people refrain from using crack, heroin or meth merely because it is illegal?

Yes. Making it illegal makes it less readily available. If you leave cigarettes lying around the schoolyard, the children WILL smoke them.


Do you really think people will start smoking crack and shooting up merely because it is no longer illegal to do so?

This is essentially the same question, phrased a different way. So again, yes. If such drugs are easier to obtain, cheaper, and legal then many more people will try them out of curiosity, boredom, whatever. With substances like meth and heroin, it can take only a few baby steps to start along the downward spiral to addiction.
 
2006-11-13 01:34:29 PM  
Fark the druggies. Seriously. I want my Second Amendment rights fully restored here in California before I want to hear another goddamn word about legalizing pot or heroin.
 
2006-11-13 01:50:56 PM  
MWeather: Do you really think that people refrain from using crack, heroin or meth merely because it is illegal? Do you really think people will start smoking crack and shooting up merely because it is no longer illegal to do so?

Yes.

People are STUPID.

Being legal is interpreted as being OKAY.

There are endless incidents of idiots stating just that.
 
2006-11-13 01:57:37 PM  
In case it wasn't said earlier, heroin withdrawl WILL NOT kill you. In fact, the only withdrawl that will kill you is alcohol.

Do all the blow, heroin, crank, whatever you want. It'll hurt to quit but it won't seriously harm you. Stop drinking and you're gonna be in serious trouble.

Look it up. Withdrawl is unpleasant, that's it. It's a misnomer that withdrawl is harmful.
 
2006-11-13 02:34:59 PM  
Benzodiazepine withdrawal will kill.

Under certain conditions heroin withdrawal can be lethal, but for the most part it is not.
 
2006-11-13 03:31:37 PM  
Getting high originally was a criminal act, and since the only reason he had withdrawl in jail was because of a criminal act, I fail to see why it's the government's fault. What's next, drunks getting payouts because the government doesn't give them booze?
 
2006-11-13 06:37:54 PM  
I had surgery one time and got the shakes after they switched me off "diloted", a nasty synthetic opiate I didn't like at all.

I had been on it like two days, and when they took it away, I got the shakes for an afternoon. Very informative lesson on what withdrawal is really like! It blows.

Next day I was fine, and on a morphine clicker. Much better.
 
2006-11-13 10:07:44 PM  
we should just grind them up and feed them to the homeless
 
2006-11-13 10:09:09 PM  
hell, better yet..... give them a gun and parachute them into iraq.... get our troops the fark out of there, AND clean up our streets....
 
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