The Scourge of ICE!
I feel a need to step outside of my normal Newsletter content today and talk about something that is pretty significant.
All over the place now I am hearing discussions about ICE. It is in the news, on talk back radio, on the web and even friends are starting to reveal how their lives are being affected.
I have a sense that we are on the edge of a crisis. For those of you who have not had much connection to the drug Crystal Methamphetamine, then I will give you a bit of a run down.
This drug is really intense and basically puts the user into a form of “hyper drive”. A friend’s son who has come through a 2 year addiction (and I am cautious about saying he is completely through the addiction) said to me, “I love it. You feel so incredible when you are on it. You can do anything.” His addiction has cost his family a great deal of grief and many thousands of dollars.
It seems that when users take it once, they are already hooked.
Why is it worse than other street drugs? Put simply, addicts can become out of control and display super human strength, making them a frightening prospect for Police. They can also become incredibly violent.
This presents incredible danger. First, an ICE user has the potential to really hurt people. Second, Police sent to control or arrest them can get hurt and third, those Police, in a desperate situation may be compelled to use firearms.
In a workplace, a person using ICE can do incredible work at a high intensity but their awareness can be almost nil. Their potentially “out of control” behaviour can get someone hurt or killed.
Plus, we should consider the prospect of people driving on ICE. This is a deeply serious situation.
So what can be done about it?
Yesterday, I was listening to a visiting American Judge who was running a program for offenders to help them handle their behaviour and get their lives back on track. He was not talking about ICE users. But he said something incredible. He said that when we are growing up, and we do something that is not right, we face the consequences of our actions immediately. We are spoken to by parents and/or teachers, perhaps given a punishment and then given something to do to make up for our offence. We learn something immediately from our mistake.
Once we step into life though, we commit and unlawful act and it is dealt with months later. Perhaps the learning, the shock and the change to behaviour do not come with it. After all, a huge percentage of offenders, given the lapse of time, go into court with an intention to cloud the issue, create confusion, justify and minimise in the hope of getting off with a light sentence.
So, after much contemplation, I have a question? Should we go for zero tolerance on the ICE issue?
What would happen if our government brought in legislation and it was given a great deal of promotion before it was to come into effect, for example January 1st, 2016.
What if that legislation basically stated that any person caught selling ICE would be shipped off to a Manus Island type facility for 2 years. No questions asked, no opportunity to plea for leniency. Then, when the person comes back they face court and the punishments handed down are all related to making amends, good quality community service.
I wonder if this would drastically cut the supply of the drug.
Now I have to be really up front here and state that I have never been a big fan of regulation. I much prefer education. But I feel this is a situation where there is grave danger. And the offenders who are selling the drug know what it does. They are aware of the potential consequences.
What do you think?