The AM New York’s cover story today is about the rise in Heroin and perscription drug use in the city, especially amongst teens and 20 year olds. I’m glad to see that a news organization is covering this story, but where the hell have they been the last ten, twenty, thirty years? All you have to do is go to 125th Street and Lexington Avenue to see the drug epidemic up close and personal. You could stock up your entire medicine cabinet for a month off of deals made on the corner in front of Pathmark. Pfizer has nothing on the junkies at Skid Row. 24/7 the people beg for change, turn in bottles and cans at the recycle spot, dope-lean on the sidewalk, exchange pharmacueticals and drug contraband, open the doors for patrons at McDonald’s and Famiglia, sell loose cigarettes and swipes using tampered metrocard. All the while the officers just let it happen, they only interject when people complain or violence ensues. It’s one of Manhattan’s dirty not-so-little secrets, the East Side of Harlem is disgusting (including the 4/5/6 train lines) and it only gets worst the further east you go. I once saw a hooker going to town on one of her custies under the overpass on 1st Ave and 125th- in broad daylight (I was on the bus going to The Bronx, I wasn’t “shopping” or anything.)
A rise in heroin and prescription drug use, as AMNY says, really means the this is increasingly becoming a white, middle class issue. Even though script drugs are being used more and more, dopefiends have been previlent in our society since the Vietnam War (since flappers and sufferage, really.) People in the ‘hoods and of a lower tax brackets have always known about this scurge on our community. Heroin’s like living death, I can’t see how, in 2009, anyone who has seen the effects of the drug ever think about using it. Honestly, we don’t, none of my graduating class has falling prey to heroine, oxycontin and the like, but Jack Osbourne, Nicole Richie and Mary Kate Olsen sure couldn’t help theirselves. So what does that tell you? Overpriviledged people take greater risks than others. It’s easy to comprehend how someone with a legitimate pain perscription can become dependant and addict to those drugs, but when it’s for recreation, I don’t get it. I don’t need any help feeling down, slow, half-dead and lazy- its called Mondays.