Arizona Views: Opioid risks not an exaggeration

December 2, 2018

My column about drugs on Nov. 23 elicited many responses, such as this from “Larry,” a daily opioid user. “I have a terribly painful chronic condition and there is little hope that I will be able to stop using this medication any time soon. … At best, this medication reduces the frequent flare ups of pain so that I can continue a pretty normal and modestly active lifestyle.”

What’s interesting was his observation from a related article, about fentanyl and Sgt. Jeremy Martin, who said the 14 pounds of fentanyl “could have killed well over 3 million people.”

“Oh please, I don’t see how 0.00000467 of a pound of fentanyl can kill that many,” Larry responded.

Well, considering that just two grains of fentanyl is enough to kill one person, I believe it. This is a drug that is used only in extremes; it is reportedly used in hospice situations, for instance.

I do not think Martin exaggerated at all.

Remember these things are killing our children. Help #StopFentanylNow. Report what you know to Silent Witness. You never have to give your name.

Christmas shopping doesn’t have to be a headache

Black Friday is one of those “events” that comes and goes in my family.

The “great deal” is the draw, not the pushing, elbowing-crowd experience; no great deal, we don’t go. And, even if the deal seems fantastic, we sometimes save our money rather than fight the shopping masses.

Shopping at Christmastime doesn’t have to be an arduous task.

First up is the idea of retail bliss — our local brick-and-mortar stores want us to visit them this shopping season. To get us there, they offer great prices and also should deliver awesome service, regardless of the season.

What gets me beyond the lines and bump-and-spend mentality is a retailer that shows great character. For instance, if they have a policy, such as “no holds” (instead it is first come, first served), do not break your rules for someone you know or a friend. A member of the public can easily find out.

The result is a breakdown of trust. Recently that happened to me. I say I may miss out on a deal because I did not get there in time, but don’t lie to me. I’d rather stay home and work on my tractor.

Conversely, when the visit is fun and pleasant I can overlook the time I spend waiting at checkout; I can even forget the rudeness of fellow shoppers who go out with a “gold rush,” care-not-for-others attitude.

In the end, please work from two things: “shop local” whenever possible — we have many wonderful small, hometown businesses here; and always remember the reason for this season and act accordingly: It is Christmastime, folks.

Tim Wiederaenders, a former Lake Havasu City resident, is an editor at the Prescott Daily Courier.

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