HOOKED! The Scourge of Drugs as it Affects One Community by Nelle
While returning home from the library one later afternoon, I saw something that I had never seen before in my neighborhood in the Bronx: people buying drugs. At first, I thought they were gambling because there were so many of them, around 50 to 60 adults flocking and surrounding one Black male. I asked one of the people, a young Black female, if they were gambling. With a big smile on her face, she said no “they were not gambling.” Immediately, it dawned on me that they were buying drugs. What else could it be in such a ghetto neighborhood like this I thought? I turned to a middle aged Hispanic male, and asked him what was going on. He told me that the Black male that everyone had surrounded was selling marijuana and informed me he sold half a pack at ten dollars and a full pack at twenty dollars. The Hispanic male, who had also purchased drugs, informed me that the Black male was a rich man, whom I did not doubt since, so many people (50 to 60) bought his drugs to get “their fix.” Not understanding drug addiction, I asked him why people bought drugs. The Hispanic man told me that everyone takes something if not drugs, then alcohol, etc, and “it was like ice cream” referring to his habit.
The drug dealer was like the pied piper to his audience, who begged him to sell them his drugs. They all knew him, calling him by name. They surrounded him like flies, feasting on a valued and treasure nectar-their drugs. The drug dealer kept all his drugs in a white plastic bag, and I saw him give out very small packets of it to his customers, who gladly paid for their fixes. Sadly, I could see that all these people, all Blacks and Hispanics, young and middle aged, were all hooked on drugs. I had read about them in books and newspapers, saw them get caught on television news, but I had never seen them in person buying drugs from a drug dealer. He quickly dispensed his drugs, took his money, and quickly left his captive audience. He could not accommodate all of his customers, particularly one woman who cried out that she needed her drugs, but he had left by then. I remembered so desperate was she to get her fix that she fell on a car. I could not believe people could be so degenerate. How naive I was.
I was shocked to see so many people literally begging an adult for drugs. They reminded me of children, and in many respects they were overgrown children, slaves to their emotions, and hypocrites. I wondered what had made them all drug junkies, supplicating for their fixes; I sense they would have done anything to get their drugs. Obviously, they did not care, nor realize they were destroying themselves. I have seen the ice cream van stopped by in the neighborhood, and some of the children would go there to buy ice cream. However, this sight I saw was horrific: many people instead of a few flocked around the drug dealer, and they were all begging him to give him drugs. It was a frantic, uncomfortable atmosphere. These people are on an agenda: to consume has many drugs as possible in their lifetimes. They are addicts–hooked on drugs. The destroyed lives, crushed dreams, and broken spirits–all signaled their desperation and anguish as people, who had given up on themselves. I–who had never taken drugs in my entire life–was shocked and dismayed to see so many people addicted to drugs. It was a rude awakening to say the least.
Oh, I knew that I lived in a bad neighborhood–the ghetto– which was crime and drug infested, but I had never seen it so blatantly in my face like that incident. It was a reality shock, a true shock that set me into a deep sadness… I, who had live a cloistered, academic world, had to face the sad fact that many, many, many people took drugs (in my neighborhood and throughout the world for that matter), and just did not care anymore. They did not see or understand that the very drugs that they craved and consumed so desperately were destroying their bodies, minds, and spirits. I said to myself how sad these people were; they appeared so tough, willing to kill you if you looked at them the wrong way, but they were slaves, hooked on drugs that slowly but surely destroyed them. I saw them for what they really were: people who had lost their dignities–mere empty shells of humanity.