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Analyzing Addiction Essay

2348 words - 9 pages

Addiction is everywhere, from celebrity tabloids, to television, and possibly to a family member or close friend. There is alcoholism, drug abuse, and gambling addiction; the effects of such are devastating. For example, the following excerpt is from the harrowing Leaving Dirty Jersey: A Crystal Meth Memoir by James Salant:
“I gave Doug the spoon and I tried to pull thirty units of water into the syringe. Doug hit me on the side of my head and said, ‘Your shaking too much, let me do that.’ I pulled away from the faucet and let the syringe fall into the sink. Then I rolled up the shirtsleeve on my right arm. I looked at my arm. I had tracks, needle marks, up and down my arm. My shirtsleeve had bloodstains on it from the day before. I held out my arm and demanded, ‘I get the first one and I want coke not watered down coke!’ Doug pulled my arm close to him and inserted the needle in my arm. As I was shaking, he told me ‘Make this last for a while.’ I felt the dope hit me and ran out of the restroom. I was shaking and could not get my breath...All my senses were focused on the feeling I was getting from the shot of cocaine…” [4]
Salant presents a saddening stereotypical addiction story: the drug user. The excerpt from his book shows the depths to which the victims of addiction will stoop to get their “fix”, or the substance or device that the addicted desire. This excerpt can be considered “stereotypical” due to several reasons. The illegal and legal drug addiction is, unfortunately, the most popular and most well known of addictions because of its presence within modern day pop culture (movies, tabloids, etc), and due to its “popularity” within our culture, the use and abuse of drugs is one of the only kinds of addiction because not as many other types of addiction are as common/dangerous. In addition, the drug addiction is well known, sometimes, because of its legality; the drug is illegal; therefore, it is bad for the user and may or may not cause addiction. However, the addiction to illegal and legal drugs is only one of the myriads of other sorts of addictions. Thousands of cases are reported each year stemming from thousands of platforms for obsession, including sex, gambling, stealing, and over-eating. Although some of these platforms may seem harmless and, in some cases, mundane, (i.e. videogames, caffeine), each case of addiction is just as serious as the next.
For example, the London Times reported on a twenty-six year-old Chinese man who played online videogames at local cyber cafés. Xu Yan, a teacher, played online games for nearly fifteen straight days, which ultimately resulted in sleep deprivation induced cardiac arrest. [6] Xu is not the only one in who is addicted to online games; According to an Annals journal on internet addiction, over 2.6 million, or 14 percent, of Chinese youth are clinically addicted to the Internet.[8] Several measures have been proposed to combat this addiction, such as banning teenagers from cyber café...

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