The Opioid Epidemic
The Opioid Epidemic has ravaged Ohio, with many dying where I live in Avon Lake and in the surrounding communities. This problem spans the whole nation, and I personally have family that have been affected. We need to have better foresight with issues like this, our fight to stop OxyContin overdoses has led addicts to heroin, and now we have as many dead Americans as a result of this epidemic as we did in WW2. This could have been avoided if we had established border security more than a decade ago, but we didn’t. What’s worst is that under former President Obama, our border was LESS secure with the catch and release policy. Making it easier for drug smugglers to get massive quantities of product over our border to meet the demand of the struggling drug addict population. That circumstance lead to an increase in heroin availability, which lead to an increase in users, addicts, and deaths. Now, heroin is coming in through various countries and criminal organizations and the problem has grown.
This is serious. We must stop what is happening, we need to help heroin junkies get clean, and find a way to get that deadly drug off our streets. If we have to burn the fields of origin where it is grown, I believe us justified in doing so. We must take care of those at home, and police the issue better. While we are engaged in a domestic battle against opioid addiction, we ought to engage the drug cartels and smugglers head on, at home and abroad. Building the Southern Border Wall to help CBP better prevent smugglers is a necessity. This problem will not stop unless we take unified action and serious preventative measures to prohibit heroin from entering our borders. We need to push back on places like San Francisco, where they have “shoot up shacks” where junkies can do heroin without fear of police activity. Ohio is a great state, and there is no doubt in my mind that our people have the resolve required to end this epidemic in our own state, but what concerns me, is that if other states don’t fall in line, then our efforts will be for naught. We need FEDERAL legislation and executive action to solve this problem. President Trump is doing his part, and now it time for Congress to do theirs. A federal law should force certain states to comply, and non-compliant states should be barred from federal funding. We have to take a heavy-handed approach to interstate compliance and do so from the position that we are exercising the government’s mandate to protect citizens from harm, which is at the core of federal responsibilities. If elected I plan to work on an agenda that helps prevent addiction to narcotic prescription drugs and stops the heroin trade at the source. We can no longer stand idly by and watch our friends and neighbors die by the hundreds of thousands. We must act swiftly, as lives depend on it.