A while back Eric wrote a bit on divorce with the theme that state involvement with personal matters is a bad idea. I had a few comments on the subject but nothing worth a blog post.
I now have something I'd like to say. And it came about because Instapundit linked to this video about a boy whose parents divorced and who subsequently got into drugs and then died of an overdose. I think you can get the gist of the video from watching the first 5 or 6 minutes. I couldn't stand watching any more.
I want to start off with a review of Henry Granju's drug use. Why was he a drug user? Consider what follows informed speculation.
People take pain relievers to relieve pain. Under any rational regime we would be looking to fix the pain and consider the drugs symptomatic rather than causative. For “addicts” the pain is in the brain. And some how if the pain is in the brain we do not consider it “real”. But the user has no interest in right or wrong pain. Only in relief.That more or less covers the drug and prohibition issues. If you want to look more into the medical aspects you might like:
Now all this pain relief would be a LOT safer under a doctor’s supervision. But doctors have only one allowed treatment for the pain in the brain. Cut users off from all drug use.
We really have only two good options: drug distribution by criminals or drug distribution by doctors. Because “prohibited” does not mean “unavailable”. It means “distributed by criminals”.
Is Addiction Real?
OK. Drugs are out of the way as the cause of the event sequence. For that we have to go back a bit further and look at divorce. And why I came to a different conclusion than the video makers after watching as much as I could tolerate of the video.
DIVORCE IS EVIL if you have children. And some times kids turn to drugs to relieve the pain of the divorce. Throw in a step parent and it gets harder. I wouldn’t make divorce illegal. But folks ought to think 2E28 times (that is a very big number) before going ahead with it.Let me note that I do not believe any law can fix the divorce problem. Courage and a change of heart is required. The law can provide neither.
I know a kid (and his mother) who went through the same thing. Friends of our family. The divorce devastated him and then a few years later there was a drug “accident”. I wouldn’t make divorce illegal or harder to get. I would say that more folks ought to man up and find a way to live with their bad choice of mate. For the children. And the children? I would put them under a Drs. supervision at the first sign of drug use – if we got the government out of the prohibition business. In the mean time? Prayer is the best we have got and it ain’t much.
The adults ought to be willing to shatter their world rather than shatter the world of a child.
If our Drug War zealots put more effort into fixing families (by private efforts) instead of railing on about the evils of drugs we might actually decrease the incidence of these problems. The advantage for the zealots is that fighting drugs is easier than fighting bad parenting. You can at least point to piles of dope, cash, and guns. Proof that "something" is being done. Even if it is counter productive (it is easier for a kid to get an illegal drug than a legal beer). What can you point to that "proves" progress is being made with families? Of course the Drug War gains are illusory in the larger sense. But the efforts are photogenic. What pictures can you show to illustrate that something is being done about divorce; that fewer daughters are getting molested by step dads? That fewer kids are dying of a broken heart? Other than a lower incidence of divorce among families with children. Charts and graphs. That is the ticket.
That is why the work ought to be private. We won't know for 20 or 30 years what works. By that time if it is a government program it will be an empire.
Cross Posted at Classical Values