Opioid overdoses have recently skyrocketed in America, in response to which the Journal of the American Medical Association advocates greater distribution of an antidote. But why should taxpayers be responsible for such an expense, and why are these drugs prescribed so much more often anyway? Dalrymple’s answers won’t be pleasing to the medical establishment:
The people who pay for the naloxone are often not the people taking heroin or opioids; one might have supposed that those who can afford street heroin, at the very least, could also afford to buy their own naloxone. If they do not care enough for their own safety to do so, why should anyone else care – unless, of course, they are deemed, like Ophelia, to be “incapable of their own distress.” But if so, why should they be left free to take the heroin in the first place? In other words, like bankers, addicts want to be free to indulge in their own excess but someone else to pick up the pieces when the excess leads to a smash.