If you think heroin and its evil twin, Krokodil (Крокодил), are alone on the European drug front, think again. The Greeks now have a new path to Hades (AKA 'hell'), called Sisa (Σισα).
Below is a recent documentary that is probably the first to attempt to explain this growing phenomenon. Because of language a subject matter, I am not going to 'hot link' it so that nobody complains later that a priest 'showed' him/her a video with some bad words in it. You need to copy and paste into your browser:
In a nutshell, Sisa is a cheaper 'synthetic' of meth. And, as with all of these new drugs, including 'Spice' and 'Bath Salts,' the effects are worse than the previous generation of street drugs. The description of Sisa given by the users is that it is bad news, but cheap.
Of course, the Greek government has no idea what to do, but then again neither does the Russian government with Krokodil or the US government with all of our drugs. I think it is pretty funny, from a US perspective, that the activists are complaining about the police rounding up addicts in Athens, without handcuffs and tazers, and asking them demographics questions (along with offering them some food and potential treatment). They ought to come over here and see how American police deal with public intoxication.
What is sad is that the Orthodox Church is not a major player in the Greek drug treatment scene. It could be, and should be. The Greek state is failing on all fronts, and so the Church has an opportunity to step up. I do know there are lots of local parishes making efforts to help the poor, but I have no information at all about the Church of Greece doing anything with drug users.
As with most of Europe, churches have taken a back seat to state efforts to treat social ills, and the effects have been pretty much a disaster. Oh, yes, we feel so much better handing out needles and subsidizing meals while people remain imprisoned by addiction. As I have said before, 'harm reduction' is not about helping addicts, but assuaging our own guilt.
What it really says is that there is no hope. And, from a militant secularist perspective, there is no hope for the Sisa addict, because the militant secularist has no God to turn to for help.
If one of our readers has information on what the Church of Greece is doing about drug addiction, I would be more than happy to post that information and give credit where credit is due. As I have said before, the Romanian and Russian Orthodox Churches are taking action. I would like to see that list grow.
Frankly, I don't think the American bishops will take any action until it becomes 'fashionable' overseas.