Monday, May 16, 2011

The Dark Side of Insite



There has been a lot of press about the joys of insite as we approach the supreme court's decision about the government's appeal to close it down. I will admit that saving lives is a good thing. Yet in all fairness we need to discuss the dark side of insite if we are going to fairly address the issue.

My personal problem with insite and needle exchanges isn't the fact that they exist. It's the social problems they create. Selling crack is against the law. Yet when we open up a needle exchange or safe injection site we then allow drug dealers to sell crack and everything under the sun openly and publicly. In fact the amount of drug trafficking goes up not down.

We want to help the addicts by reducing the risk of overdose yet in doing so we create more addicts. Sure a handful will enter a detox program but look at the huge number of more addicts we create by making the drug so accessible. Not to mention how hard we make it for addicts to quit when the drug is so accessible and everywhere they go dealers are pushing it in their face.

I will admit, cleaning the allies and having a nice clean place to inject heroin or inject cocaine looks nice. It almost looks compassionate. As long as you don't look at the dark side and deny it exists.

Anyone with a brain will agree that the huge exposure insite is getting, there is a huge amount of money to be made from the illegal drug trade it promotes. Extremists would then claim the next step is to legalize all drugs. Yet that would be irresponsible as would promoting an illegal drug trade.

So here we have a safe injection site in East Vancouver that has greatly increased not decreased the amount of drug trafficking in the area. Let's pause for a minute and ask ourselves who is profiting from all this misery? Who are the ones making the big bucks from supplying the drugs to be injected there? It is the Hells Angels. The Hells Angels control the drug trade in East Vancouver. They are so ruthlessly violent the people in East Van are too afraid to mention their name. The name Hells Angels is then replaced with the acronym the boys, the big boys or not even repeated out of fear.

Kind of like the fear Tony Terezakis instilled on behalf of the Hells Angels in the American hotel and the Cobalt. Kinda like the fear that Juel Stanton instilled for the Hells Angels in the Ivanhoe. Which was reinstilled when they even killed Juel Stanton which made the fear and uncertainly of their brutal ruthlessness skyrocket.

Kinda like the fear that would generate enough public outrage to hold demonstrations for Ashley Machiskinic's murder when the police tried to claim it was a suicide.

Kind of like the fear generated by the Surrey House of Horrors or the Prince George torture chambers. That is the dark side of Insite. If that kind of drug related torture exists in Surrey and Prince George, we know it exists in East Vancouver. The Pickton farm was just one example.

So there are clearly pros and cons of keeping Insite open. Preventing over doses is a good thing but increasing the number of addicts is not and supporting the kind of torture and abuse addicts are experiencing is socially irresponsible. The methadone program has good intentions. Yet when we refuse to reduce the dosage for people on the program those good intentions fail.

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On the subject of Insite John Ferry from the Vancouver Province wrote a good editorial called: Addicts need more than a clean needle. "On the other hand, former longtime heroin addict Barry Joneson wants Insite shut down. He's saddened people don't seem to understand you have to confront addiction, not coddle it."

Which kinda brings me to my statement doctors don't prescribe alcohol to alcoholics. James Coulter said Clay had a very big heart. I will never forget how he helped me get out of addiction.

We don't want a safe injection site in Surrey.

7 comments:

  1. Good to see the correct judgements and observations here.

    Yes, the Carnegie corner is getting a big facelift, the alley behind it is paved, lots of new brickwork, fresh concrete, new paving, modern lighting, the whole feel is very upscale and yuppified now. One can now go there & score any amount of any drug you want from the local Mexican cartel reps. (smack & some coke) in nice clean surroundings, how pleasant of the poor fleeced taxpayers! Nothing of reality has changed of course.

    Again your comments on the crazy methadone world are right on, clinics are in business, as are their doctors, to push push push meth.....I go to a very upscale clinic that will never ever ask anyone to drop one single ml. of their dose! Ever! They were hugely surprised when I FORCED them to slash my dose EVERY
    single time I go there, will be off soon, I tell ya I'm the only one. Anyone can get on meth., with one dirty test, then they'll UP your dose every time you tell them you have a slight headache. Next thing ya know you're making great cash, $20/100 ml., on all that endless free juice the Province just pushes & pushes on you. Dirty pharmacies that pay for dailies, meth. "hotels", con-man pharmacists, its a whole world of taxpayer-subsidized criminality. A gushing river of meth. runs through this province, I see it first-hand.

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  2. I've decided the only way to win this fight for a moral caring drug-free Universe, is that you're on yer own; it's all up to your personal morality, no help from anyone. I just said to myself, ENOUGH. I won't resell my meth., I won't deal dope, I won't TAKE dope of ANY kind, that goes for alcohol & tobacco as well if yer honest with yourself. No one in BC will help you, no one will aid you. It's all on one's own head, its up to the individual here NOT to take part in the fuckin' sick drug economy here. Shoot down the fuckin' HA in the streets if you have to; anything.

    It's up to all of us to fight back by making your own trip, one by one, to first stop & then (at least in my world) take a terrible revenge on those fuckers who pollute my land.

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  3. Good for you for decreasing your dosages. It’s great that you’re taking complete responsibility for getting things right. I still don’t think it should be that way. I don’t think people on the program are to blame I think it’s the dirty Pharmacists and Doctors who keep upping the dose instead of decreasing the dose. The whole idea of selling the methadone is another can of worms.

    As you said any crack addict can take a couple of hits of heroin and claim to be a heroin addict and get on the program. They could in theory sell the methadone to buy crack at the tax payers’ expense. That’s another example of tax dollars with good intensions getting misspent.

    I think most of us in society have compassion on the heroin addict. Giving them a clean needle doesn’t make it free so they still suffer the abuse and torture to come up with the money to pay for the drug. We could still let Insite continue while we arrest the drug dealers at Carnegie centre.

    As far as shooting the Hells Angels for profiting and controlling the drug trade, I don’t think there’s enough bullets in the world. When the police arrest one Hells Angels mule, a dozen more are willing to take their place. Likewise, shooting one patch member and a dozen more are chomping at the bit to get his colors and take his place selling drugs for the club.

    I just think the key is to stop letting the crack dealers sell crack, meth or heroin in public. People will always be able to get it but stopping it from being so public is the first step. That is the New York model.

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  4. I wish you were right about sympathy for the addict but I've carefully read citizens' replies to national Insite stories. In fact the replies are very harsh against the addict, many apparently favouring addict death as a form of Darwinian selection! I had my hands full rebutting some of the most savage, but its clear a lot of citizens still don't see addicts as humans even.

    We're a long way in society from a greater & more humane understanding, so maybe Insite has to stay.

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  5. Good point. No doubt there are many people with the screw the addict attitude. Yet when you see the support Insite does have many others don’t share that attitude, myself included. Crack addicts tend to be more aggressive than heroin addicts. I think some people get upset when they see the extremists demand this and that at the taxpayers expense.

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  6. Agent K:

    "...there is a huge amount of money to be made from the illegal drug trade it (Insite) promotes."

    How exactly does the safe injection site *promote* drug use ? Because dealers hang out there? If so, then any site that dealers hang out in front of, to you, promotes drug sales. So, please, how does the Carnegie Centre, which serves the community thru endless free or cheap services, promote drug use, 'cuz of the dealers who congregate there? Or any place they are at? Why choose one place out of ten dozen others?

    Your statement is not logical, unfortunately.

    Agent K:

    "...a safe injection site in East Vancouver that has greatly increased not decreased the amount of drug trafficking in the area."

    How so? You've made a plain statement of fact; now it's up to you to prove it. Please do.

    One presumes you have the Police stats., the arrest records, the beat patrol write-ups.

    Any of those, or any other linked, verifiable statistics will be fine.

    Otherwise, are you willing to withdraw your statement, if in your answer it's proved to be nothing more than your personal prejudice against Insite?

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  7. When the police let crack dealers sell crack in public outside the Carnegie centre that promotes drug use. The Carnegie centre is a wonderful thing. Letting it be taken over by drug dealers is not. I’m not going to withdraw a true statement. You’ve been downtown. In the last 10 to 20 years the bad problem has become epidemic. You see the same thing anywhere crack is sold openly in public.

    In Surrey we have a needle exchange right beside if not in the same building as the Front Room homeless shelter. Because there is a needle exchange right there, the police allow crack dealers to sell crack in public there. That homeless shelter is now a drug house. I’ve spoken to many homeless in Surrey that refuse to go there because of the drug related violence. We can have Insite and needle exchanges, but that doesn’t mean we have to let crack dealers sell crack in public outside them.

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