It is my personal opinion that if the end of the world "AS WE KNOW IT" is looming in our near future as REM sang about, it will be brought about by addiction and bath salt zombies. 

The economic condition of our country is in the toilet.  The unemployment rates are alarming nationwide, but here in the mountains every couple weeks another large coal company announces it's closing, and laying off or letting go hundreds of employees.   These people who can't find work are turning to any means they can think up to make ends meet.  Every couple weeks the phone lines are out because someone has stolen the telephone lines for the copper to sell for scrap metal.  There was a story in the local paper last week about the sheriff's department busting some guy who had stolen almost 10 military grave markers, intending to scrape off and sell the tiny amount of copper on the markers.

Addiction has long been a problem here in eastern Kentucky.  Drug companies pushed pain pills down the throats of coal miner's. Opiate addiction is a big problem here, as well as the abuse of other prescription medications.  Recent changes in state laws have made it so that general practice doctors can no longer prescribe pain medicine.  I know an elderly man with cancer, who doesn't know what he's going to do next month when he can't get any more refills for his medicine.  The health care reps tell him to go to a pain clinic, where you sit among pill heads who have scraped up enough cash to come get their monthly script.  There are waiting lists to get into these clinics, and patients who have seen their family doctor for years now have to fight the clinic crowd to get the medicine they need. Tightening the pain pill laws will have repercussions.  The pills that people are addicted to are going to be harder to get.  They are going to become desperate and unpredictable. 

A recent article talked about how the rates of heroine related crimes in Louisville had increased tenfold in the last couple years.  With the pill laws making their drug of choice harder to get, addicts have turned to heroine to get their fix.  Heroine is arguably the most addictive drug there is.  The article stated that people have been arrested in possession of heroine in several other counties as well, many closer to home here in eastern Kentucky.  If people think things are bad here now with all the pill addictions, wait until they're cut off and turn to heroine.  Better katy-bar the door, because it'll all be over then.  

The latest drug fad to hit the area is a product marketed as bath salts. They're in no way intended to pour into a tub to soak in.  The drug is pretty much synthetic cocaine. With bath salts already booming locally, if heroine makes it's way into the area as a result of the pain pill cutback laws, things are going to get bad.  Remember when Charlie Sheen was making all those videos wired out of his mind?  Bath salts was responsible for that, and his following court issues and house arrest. 

Bath salts are so new, not much is known about their effects, short-term or long-term.  Many users experience something like a 'bad trip,' and just flip out. One user said, "Some people just can't handle it."  While on the drug, users have experienced radical personality changes, some snorting their way into a prolonged psychosis.  For a while around here it was commonplace to hear about some guy stabbing his girlfriend while on a bath salt binge, or another guy trying to fight five other guys, then slash his wrists. Other towns across the country are experiencing the bath salt boom too.  Along with it come the outrageous tales of the terrible, unexplainable, and just retarded things users have done.

In the little town that I live in, the local grocery store was broken into one night by a guy who was on bath salts.  When an employee arrived the next morning, he found a window broken, and the bath salt guy passed out in the floor, covered in peanut butter and chocolate.  Merchandise was scattered all over the store.  He had a wild night, squirting ketchup and other condiments all over the shelves.  Some reports say he had written out "I'm Sorry" in mustard on the floor.  Local newspapers dubbed him the Peanut Butter Bandit, and he was sent away to the big house.

Shockingly, many of the incidents involving bath salt attacks involve attempted cannibalism.  Guess these are definitely the people who "can't handle it."  In June in Layfeyette, Louisiana forty-three-year-old Carl Jacquneaux was said to have had a domestic dispute with Todd Credeur.  He stormed into Carl's yard and attacked him, biting a chunk out of his face while on the drug. 

Pamela McCarthy, a 35 year old wife and mother from New York was actually tasered to death after a run in with the state police.  Onlookers called police when the naked McCarthy was seen attacking her toddler son and the family dog.  The picture below was taken as the child ran to his father for safety.  McCarthy suffered cardiac arrest after the incident.  She was high on bath salts. 
McCarthy, running naked and going after her son who's dad is holding him, before being killed by the police
June was a busy month for out of control bath salt users.  On the 26th Michael Daniel was arrested in Waco, Texas.  Cops were called when he tore through his family's home in a rage, then chased the neighbors dog, barking at it as he did so.  When he caught the dog, he beat it, strangled it, then proceeded to eat it.

Also in June a 20 year old man attacked a 77 year old woman with a shovel while high on bath salts.  After finally being subdued with a large quantity of rubber bullets and a taser gun, he told officers he was an alien and that Jesus was telling him to kill the woman.

The case that started the Bath Salt Zombie craze was when Rudy Eugene literally ate the face off of a homeless man in Miami.  The attack lasted 18 minutes before Eugene was finally shot to death by police.  Warning, the following video shows the attack from a surveillance camera.  It doesn't show much detail, but might not be appropriate for the kiddies:    
Just as crazy is the story of Michael Daniel of Texas.  Family members called the police when they say he went berserk.  He attacked several family members and friends while running around on all fours and growling and barking like a dog.  Before the cops could arrive, he snatched up the family dog and started biting chunks out of it.

A little closer to home, a 19 year old Charleston, W. Va. man was found in a very bizarre position.  His neighbor had been told by friends that Mark Thompson had stolen a pygmy goat she had bought for her granddaughter.  When police went to question Thompson, they found him in his bedroom, high on bath salts, wearing women's underwear and standing over the dead goat. 
Officers allowed Thompson to keep his bra on for his mugshot

Maybe these individuals weren't the most mentally stable people to begin with, and when they used this new powerful drug, the just couldn't handle it.  Crazy people need to be extra careful when they want to go out and get high.  Lesson of the day kiddos, unless you want to find yourself naked, covered in condiments, biting chunks out of people and animals, Just Say No to bath salts!

For info on more bath salt related attacks, go to the following link: Bath Salt Attacks

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