Far beyond the numbers of deaths by gunshot or traffic accidents are the gruesome figures now listed for 2016: death by drug overdose.
An estimated 60,000, many coming from over-the-counter or prescription pain killers called opioids.
No longer does the packaged-poison have to be smuggled over the border from Mexico; the cursed stuff is manufactured and sold right here in the United States.
I am talking about medications like fentanyl, morphine, methadone, palladone, hydrocodone, oxycodone and a whole lot more. Basically they have the same ingredients as cocaine with a slightly different D.N.A. but all, when the user becomes addicted, have the same deadly effect.
Entire communities, especially in the Mid West and the North East are being decimated by hundreds of over-dose cases that have stretched hospitals and care facilities to the limit. AND THERE IS NO END IN SIGHT.
Last week 60 souls departed this life in the Las Vegas massacre. The whole nation is still in shock, but the far more frightening story is that TWICE that number (mainly young people) died of opioid overdoses in that seven day period.
A whole generation has lost it's way folks. Taught in public schools that they are no more than a cosmic-coincidence and little higher than the apes that swing in trees. Told that this life is all that there is and that the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ is a fairy story millions of young people have lost hope and direction.
Their response is "To hell with it. We will seek solace and solutions in our own way even if it means dying in a back alley in Dayton or crack-house in Columbus"
Tonight I would ask you to remember America in your prayers.
She needs them.