Bourbon, scotch…and bath salts?

Thinking about doing bath salts, really?

The use of illegal substances is a funny topic, especially in college. At this age, it seems everyone is enjoying the freedom and living the, “hey, why not?” lifestyle, since they may never get a chance to experiment again. Why not do it now? YOLO, after all.

Well, this unique subculture got a swift kick in the pants this summer when a man allegedly on a new synthetic drug compound dubbed “bath salts” ate most of a homeless man’s face before being shot dead.

“Bath salts?” you could hear the community ask. “What are those, I’ve never heard of them! Know anyone I can get them from?”

It seems it came on the scene so fast, because within the month there were reports of violent attacks and uncharacteristic behavior across the country, and all of it from people on bath salts. In nearby Utica, N.Y. there were a remarkable seven bath salts-related incidents in two weeks, all involving symptoms very similar to what the country experienced in late May; extreme paranoia, hallucinations, and violent tendencies.

Miami, Toronto, Utica, and even as close to home as Rutland, there have been reported bath salts crimes and deaths in the three short months since the drug first came into the spotlight in May.

Here’s the funny thing: it turns out the man in Miami that started all of this wasn’t even on the drug, according to the medical examiner in charge of the autopsy.

Regardless, here’s the question everyone should be asking: if a culture’s first “exposure” to a drug is that of a violent attack that made some think of a zombie outbreak, what would possess anyone else to try it? According to Sgt. Jeff Glover, a police spokesman in Tempe, Arizona where several bath salt crimes occurred, “More people should be made aware of the dangers.”

Who wasn’t aware of the dangers from the beginning? The first exposure, no matter how false it was, involved a man’s face being eaten off. Isn’t that awareness enough right there? Clearly not, because within months a woman is running naked through traffic saying her clothes are electrocuting her, a man is hiding on his roof because all the people around him are “going to ambush” him, and several people end up simply dying on the drug.

There is absolutely no reason for this drug to ever be consumed. Some people online are making claims that marijuana being criminalized leads people to search for other ways to get high, but that’s absolute trash because no one’s giving anyone else a drug consumption quota.

We here at the Spartan think it’s time for people to be held accountable. If you take a drug that’s known to end people’s lives, that’s your choice and the consequence is with you and no one else. It’s outrageous that people are trying to blame the problem on legislation when it’s really the fault of the user for not making a simple choice: don’t do bath salts.

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