Drug Abuse Deaths and Celebrities

Why are the deaths of celebrities by overdoses even major news anymore?

While the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman is sad and perhaps even tragic for his family, why should it have any true meaning for anyone who follows entertainment very closely?
It’s not the first; and it won’t be the last.

I’m 47 when I’m writing this,. In my lifetime DOZENS of famous actors,musicians, writers, political leaders artists,etc have lost their lives through their addiction to drugs. The most famous ,arguably have been Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley, although there are probably many whose death were more significant to others.

It’s not odd nor is it unusual. It’s so common that it (in my opinion) barely merits mentioning.

Why do we as a society treat something which isn’t new or unique as if it was when it occurs?

We don’t. What’s “new and unique” is that a well-known person is suddenly not alive anymore. Whether they died in a plane crash, choked on a bite of ribeye, or were flattened by a falling anvil, it would still make the news.

Yeah. People are fascinated by far less interesting aspects of celebrities lives than the actual end of them. Which unlike many of the others is at least permanent.

In addition to the above, I think cases like this one really hammer home just how serious and destructive drug addiction can be, especially to those of us who don’t see it in our everyday lives. If a brilliant guy with every resource imaginable at his disposal can’t kick it…wow.

A 46-year-old man was found dead with a needle in his arm. That’s quite unusual, because it’s VERY uncommon for a person that age to be doing it. People rarely start using IV drugs at that age, and those who have used them generally don’t live that long. Some of us were equally horrified at John Entwistle’s death from cocaine use; he was nearly 60 years old.

As for Michael Jackson’s death, the pharmacy community is STILL freaked out over what he was using. Who ever thought propofol would become a household word? It’s a difficult to use, dangerous anesthetic adjunct, NOT a sedative, and not anything available in any retail pharmacy I know of.

There’s a reason why “Club 27” has so many members. That’s pretty much the life expectancy for a hardcore alcoholic or drug addict. I’ve seen many examples of this amongst patients in hospitals where I’ve worked.