smiles

I received some disturbing news today.  There were two boys in the next town over, just 7 and 10 years old.  These boys are now patients at Lehigh Valley Hospital because they both ingested some sort of illegal substance.  While police aren’t releasing much information yet, the word around town is that these boys took a synthetic drug called “smiles”.  http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/story?section=news%2Flocal&id=8820919

This is disturbing to me on so many levels.  These boys were just children, not teenagers, but children.  It has become quite common for teens to try drugs and people tend to be “used” to the idea.  A story about a teenager is not necessarily so shocking.  But hearing a story about young children and a drug catches ones attention!  A 7 and 10 year old are supposed to be playing with legoes, riding bikes and playing video games.  They are supposed to be playing baseball and kickball and going fishing.  They aren’t supposed to be exposed to or ingesting any illegal substances!

Especially in small-town USA!  These kids are supposed to be leading a sheltered life!  Sure, things aren’t like they were when we were kids, but it is still a pretty good place to raise a family.  It is still basically safe from all of that stuff you find in the big city!  Isn’t it?!

My kids used to attend that school district…they even attended the same school that the 10 year old now attends.  This brings this even closer to home for me!  This isn’t just a sad story about someone else and someone else’s community!  This is here!  Our community!  My backyard!

I can’t help but wonder how widespread this is.  This is reaching down into the intermediate and elementary school.  Not just our teenagers, but our children.  What can we do?  When is it enough?  How do we fight this?  How do we ensure that no more kids are exposed to this?  That no more of our kids are hurt or killed? 

We must not only ask these and other questions, we must find an answer!  Our kids and our community need us to find that answer! 

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