Kill drug indifference

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Illustration by Liz Coffee

Illustration by Liz Coffee

I’m a firm believer that adults should be able to live their lives as they choose. Generally, adults make decent choices.

What bothers me, however, is when people make rash decisions that lead to events that compromise their life and the lives of those who surround them. The leading cause of accidental death in the U.S. is no longer automobile accidents, but drug overdoses, according to Time Magazine. Something about that doesn’t sit right with me.

I’ll have you know I have plenty of friends, and plenty of those friends take illegal drugs. I’m sure you can think of people in your life, friends or otherwise, who do the same. These people are some of the most kind-hearted, creative, colorful individuals I’ve ever met. They lend insight by sharing a world that has less inhibition and more vibrant displays of character.

But I don’t know where I’d be if any of them suddenly left my life.

College is a time to expand your horizons and try new things. I have no doubt that those new things will be offered to some of you in the form of an array of kooky drugs. When you’re offered these things, I have one piece of advice for you: know what you’re getting yourself into.

I’m not here to preach abstinence or shame those of you who enjoy doing these drugs. It’s not the people who frequent raves, or do shrooms on the weekends with their friends that I’m worried about. It’s the students who observe these behaviors and feel like outcasts because they don’t partake in them. It’s the people who sit and listen to friends exchanging stories about their latest trips and feel like they have nothing to contribute. And it’s the ones who would do these drugs if offered, even if they know in the back of their minds they shouldn’t. It’s this sense of indifference that I want to eliminate.

If you decide you want to partake in this ever-expanding drug culture — or perhaps you already consider yourself a connoisseur — I encourage you to do research. Know what you’re putting into your body. Know how it can affect you, in both the long and short term. From what I’ve heard, most people don’t usually die from taking Adderall. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t know how it can and will affect your body. Popping Molly might seem cool, but the long-lasting neurological effects might not be welcome ten years from now.

You have the ability to be whoever you want to be. Make sure you’re making decisions that are congruent with your goals. Strive for excellence. If you feel like you have to experiment with drugs to fully develop your character, don’t let those decisions define your character.

 

Amanda Irons can be reached at ai[email protected] or on Twitter @Amanda_Irons