Attacks on Hunter Biden draw attention to yet another deadly pandemic

Amid a pandemic that has killed more than 220,000 people in the United States, many Americans have turned away from another crisis that has claimed almost exactly as many lives over the past three years: drug addiction and drug addiction.

Now the Trump campaign’s continued attacks on Hunter Biden in the final days of the presidential campaign – largely around his publicly documented struggles with drug addiction in the past – are adding to the frustrations of treatment experts already struggling with an epidemic. drug addiction exacerbated by the coronavirus. Some, however, are hoping the conversation about drug addiction may bring renewed attention to proposals by President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden to deal with the country’s other public health disaster.

“We hope they recognize that until the arrival of COVID, the only national health crisis was in substance use disorders,” said Mark Dunn, director of public policy for the National Providers Association. drug treatment. “The problems with mental health and substance use disorders have only been exacerbated by COVID, and therefore, when we go through this problem with a vaccine, or however we let’s go through it, there are a lot of people who will need a lot of help me. “

“There were a record number of drug overdose deaths in 2019 and we are on track to set another grim record in 2020,” said Marcia Lee Taylor, government relations manager with the Partnership to End Addiction. “Policymakers, regardless of their party, will need to make resolving this crisis a top priority in 2021 and beyond.”

Even though the coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated the conditions – social, medical, economic – that can lead to substance use, drug addiction has been discussed almost exclusively against the largely derogatory context of Hunter Biden’s past struggles.

“Are you talking about Hunter?” Trump said during the first presidential debate in September, interrupting Biden as he reflected on his late son, Beau Biden, who died of brain cancer five years ago. “Hunter was kicked out of the military. He was kicked out, dishonorably fired for cocaine use – he didn’t have a job until you became vice president, and once you became vice president he made a fortune.

Rudy Giuliani, the president’s attorney, has doubled down in recent weeks with the leak of documents allegedly obtained from Hunter Biden’s laptop, using the as yet unproven existence of what he told the Daily Beast: ‘a number of photographs which show very explicit sexual activity, and other very personal things, and also display criminal behavior,’ including ‘smoking crack’ to attack Elder Biden as both a parent and as a civil servant.

Drug treatment specialists have warned that the bogus attacks – Hunter Biden was not dishonorably fired – stigmatize the tens of millions of recovering Americans and may make them less likely to seek treatment at a time when relapse rates are skyrocketing across the country.

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