Friday, December 2, 2011

Stories that raise questions...

Hi Friends;

  I stumbled upon this story via that same little app I put on my wallpaper.  I've adapted the story a bit as I am not allowed to post it in its entirety.  So, for those interested, search "Denver, Sheriff, Methamphetemines, Patrick Sullivan" and the AP story will likely be easy to find.  Ok?

A U.S. national sheriff of the year is now an inmate in the jail that was named for him, accused of offering methamphetamine in exchange for sex from a male acquaintance.
     Colorado retired Sheriff Patrick Sullivan, 68, now in handcuffs, dressed in jail oranges and walking with a cane observed quietly as a judge raised his bail amount to a half-million dollars and sent him to the Patrick J. Sullivan Jr. Detention Facility.
    The current sheriff, Grayson Robinson, who worked as undersheriff for Sullivan from 1997 until he took over the job in 2002, said "the department was shocked and saddened at his arrest" and has many in suburban Denver's Arapahoe County where he held sway for nearly two decades wondering what happened to the tough-as-nails lawman they once knew.
    Sullivan came to the attention of law enforcement Oct. 4 when two confidential informants said that Sullivan was dealing meth but would sell it only if they had sex with him. He was arrested after police set up a sting at a home.
    While those who know Sullivan were puzzled by the news, some said they weren't surprised that a person of his stature could get involved. They said meth users will do almost anything to feed their habit and often hurt others in the process.  "This drug knows no economic, social, professional or occupational boundaries," said state Rep. Ken Summers, who served on a legislative meth task force.

  Now, I am no expert on drugs, retired sheriffs, or even trading drugs for sex.  Being one who is completely absent of any expertise, I am, of course, qualified to offer opinion....   
  I find myself with a couple of real questions:
  1.  Was this former sheriff a drug user before retiring?
  2.  Was this former sheriff seeking sex with other men before retiring?
  3.  Will this former sheriff be treated differently from others who come to that very jail for similar offense?
  4.  If this drug knows no economic, social, professional or occupational boundaries, is the drug the fault or the person?  If the drug is the culprit, will this person be helped or tossed in jail and forgotten as many are who find themselves in like clothing and accommodation?  And, if the "drug is the culprit", then why are others given such harsh sentences?

  Americans will often look at this situation and shake our head wondering how far the mighty have fallen.  Some will advocate the jail named after him be known now as the one that he is buried beneath.  Some will seek to excuse his actions in light of his past good deeds, believing that a person's worst moments shouldn't occlude his best. 

  I ask those above questions because people often forget that there are social and personal issues that come into play upon any violation of the laws.  The man could seemingly get sex only by the dangle of illicit drugs.  Is he a user is unknown, though he doesn't appear to be too terribly ravaged by the loss of the drug in his system.  So, I am going to presume that this was more about the sex, and perhaps the money, than the drug.  If the sex, then perhaps it shows that a person, in good standing with the community, must hide his desires in the underground and back alleys of a drug world when the desire for gay sex should not be such a cause of hiding and shame.  You see my point?  Perhaps the very reason this man "fell so far" is that he used the drugs to get the sex that he couldn't socially.  He now becomes a very strange poster-child in a world so overcome with judgement and spite.


Scottie said...

Hello Randy. Of all the great questions you ask, I find the one about sex to be the most fascinating one for me.

All humans are social creatures. As such we need human contact. Not just socially but physically. We all need to feel the touch of another person, we all need to be held, hugged, and yes most of us have sexual needs.

I am shock by the biting, bitter snide comments I over hear people use about others. Again I think it is ego, marking our status, we are better than that type thing. But everyone needs someone. While that person may not appeal to you, there is some one that person is a wonderful fit for.

As for the drug thing I have never understood if the addiction to drugs and alcohol is a medical problem or a personality problem. While almost everyone would love to have more free time and more enjoyment, not everyone becomes hooked on substances to the point of loss of other things in their life.

Knowing how many people in my family are addicted to booze, and what it did to their lives, I don't drink. Ron does once in a while have a glass of wine. I don't care of others drink, although I have little patients with drunks. But I wont have my life messed up by it so I just wont do it. But they tell me that it is not as simple for those who can't seem to control themselves. To me it seems like it is just don't do it, but they say that some people have compulsions to do it.

Sorry I have no insights, or thoughts other than to say again you have got me thinking. You ask great questions. Many hugs and best wishes. Scottie

randy said...

Hi Scottie;
I guess everyone remedies their problems in different ways, and that's part of the problem. We find a way that works, sorta, and much of the time it just makes things worse.
This former sherrif had a lot going for him, but risked it all....was it for the drugs, the money, or the sex? It would be interesting to understand. It would be even more interesting to see if since this once very respected person fell, maybe the way others are treated could gather a bit more understanding and a bit less vengence.