What’s More Dangerous, ISIS or Heroin?

If you were to ask most people in the world today what is the greatest challenge we face, many would respond by saying ISIS. 

However, there were 17,891 deaths due to terrorism worldwide in 2013. In the United States in 2013 there were 46,471 drug induced deaths and 183,000 deaths worldwide in 2012 and the numbers rising, not lowering.

Death by heroin has doubled between the years 2010 and 2012 and opiate deaths have quadrupled since 1991. 

4 out of 5 people who start using heroin today began their opioid addiction on prescription opioids. Our perception of the heroin user is completely out of touch with reality. The typical heroin user is not the strung out homeless person or Hollywood star, heroin use reaches every strata of our society. 

There are approximately 40 terrorist groups in the world today and approximately 20 fatal drugs. Allow me for a moment to contrast just one of these terrorist groups and one lethal drug. The similarities between the two are frightening.

ISIS clothes their victims in orange jump suits; Heroin clothes their victims in hopelessness and despair.

ISIS destroys nations one person at a time; Heroin destroys a nation’s greatest asset one life at a time.

ISIS is morally and ethically bankrupt; Heroin is morally and ethically corrupting.

ISIS destroys its victims with a sword;  Heroin destroys it victims with a needle.

ISIS severs its victims head; Heroin severs its victims  thinking.

ISIS promises excitement but leads to death; Heroin  promises fun but leads to death.

ISIS models might equals power and control; Heroin models use equals powerlessness and no control.

ISIS is a religion of hate; Heroin is a religion of self-hatred;

ISIS means death to infidels; Heroin means death to the invincibles.

So, who really is the world’s greatest enemy? Most of our country believes we are at war with ISIS. Perhaps it’s time we declared war on drugs as well!

Mason Swinney 


About menmourningmoments

I'm happily married, the Father of 2 sons and 2 daughters and 4 beautiful grandchildren. Death is all around us but somehow we've managed to distance ourselves from it. Men, Mourning, Moments is about how the death of my son awakened me to life & the desire to seize every moment as though it were my last. It's about making sense of life in the good times and bad and allowing GOD to carry me and teach me through the hard times in life.
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5 Responses to What’s More Dangerous, ISIS or Heroin?

  1. Amy Hughes says:

    One of my favorite posts you have written. This is BEYOND true. One of my greatest challenges as a therapist and in the past a proffessor who taught about mental health, substance abuse and crime is debunking the stereotype! Heroin is the new “It” drug, Louisville has now devoted a whole task force just to this drug alone. I see families who don’t get it and addicts that don’t even understand how it happened themselves. So very true that most heroin users/addicts started by being prescribed some type of narcotic for legitimate reasons, even something as common as having their wisdom teeth taken out and then the addiction took over. I’m so glad you wrote this Mason and I will share it with many of my clients and their families. You do such a good job w/ this blog. Love you!


  2. edcol52 says:

    Hi Mason- This is so true. Opiate addiction in its myriad forms is the scourge of our society. It steals our most precious gifts, our children, without nary a whisper. Thanks for posting this.


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