Heroin and other addictions damage everyone.
Two heroin smugglers caught in Bali in 2005 were executed this week. Ten years ago, they masterminded this crime and led of a pack of drug carriers. The seven drug mules are still in Indonesian jails.
Dramatic news reports surrounded the deaths of the smugglers. Pages of newsprint were devoted to them. Stories about them and their families led television news reports. Social media was inundated with comment. Not all reports were in good taste.
Sympathies ran high for these men. They were said to have been rehabilitated. Candlelit vigils were held in Australian capital cities. People gathered to express their displeasure and sadness about the death penalty. The government made repeated representations to Indonesia for mercy.
The executed men were subjected to barbaric state-sanctioned murder. Their families and friends suffer grievously and deserve our ongoing sympathy.
The bodies were repatriated to Australia. Such was the hype that one would hardly have been surprised to read an announcement of a State funeral.
However, nearly four people in Australia die every day from drug overdoses (not necessarily heroin). None of them has the chance to rehabilitate. Their families suffer grievously.. They must bury their sons and daughters, mothers and fathers, grandchildren and friends. Such senseless waste of life.
Others have lives in tatters because of their addictions. Their families are affected.
By all means let us campaign about the death penalty in other countries.
Let us also campaign strongly against heroin and other drugs
Here’s my list for things to campaign for
- Protection of our sons and daughters from dangerous suppliers of illegal and legal drugs.
- Appropriate care, treatment and rehabilitation for those in our community with heroin and other addictions.
- Adequate education, care and treatment for people with mental illnesses.
- Appropriate protection of children of drug-addicted parents.
- Rehabilitation opportunities for those convicted of drug crimes.
- Reduction of drug-related crimes such as home-invasions.
And let’s have some prayers and candlelit vigils for these people.
- People with addictions.
- Families of those who have overdosed.
- Victims of intimate violence where drugs are a factor.
- Victims of violence at the hands of drug-affected strangers.
- Children who will never know a normal home-life.
- Grandparents whose grandchildren they never see, or see infrequently.
- Victims of drug-fuelled home invasions.
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