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Demi Lovato Awake After Overdose, Singer Reportedly Did Not Overdose on Heroin

According to People, Demi Lovato is awake after being given Narcan for an apparent heroin overdose, but a source close to Lovato later said the drug she overdosed on was not heroin. Lovato has struggled with opioid addiction for years.

But even after treatment, insiders say she still struggled with her private pain. “Demi was never really clean and sober from all of her demons,” a Lovato source told PEOPLE. “She has been fighting depression and anxiety for quite some time — and is still in such a dark place. She was sober for awhile, but not completely sober for six years.”

People also reported that the singer is recovering.

The star’s publicist also released a statement Tuesday evening confirming Lovato is recovering. “Demi is awake and with her family who want to express thanks to everyone for the love, prayers and support. Some of the information being reported is incorrect and they respectfully ask for privacy and not speculation as her health and recovery is the most important thing right now.”

In light of that statement, let’s speculate wildly. I think she was mainlining chocolate truffles right into her eyeball. That’s a thing people do, right? Death by chocolate is a term I’ve heard.

Okay, what I actually want to talk about in light of Lovato’s overdose is the real harm that the “war on drugs” started by Richard Nixon and made worse by Ronald Reagan has caused. One of the things that stood out to me is that Lovato and the people with her wouldn’t cooperate with police or tell them what it was that she took, which potentially could have made things much worse.

Whether you view addiction as a disease, a moral failing or a chemical dependency, people struggling with it need help, and throwing them in prison, sometimes for decades, isn’t going to help them. All the research on supervised injection sites for opioid addicts shows reduced risk to addicts, increased likelihood that they’ll seek treatment and a reduction in crime.

Demi Lovato is rich and famous and has resources and she still struggles with addiction; imagine the difficulty someone who’s poor and alone would have. We need to stop treating people with addiction problems like criminals and start treating them with compassion.

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