Whitney Houston's Tragic Death: Would Legalizing Drugs Help Those Battling Addiction?

   By drodriguez  Feb 13, 2012

As the world still mourns singer Amy Winehouse and Michael Jackson’s untimely deaths, we receive the news that legendary pop and R&B singer Whitney Houston has also died.

Though Houston’s cause of death is still unknown, there are reports that the singer may have been mixing Xanax with alcohol before stepping into a bath in her hotel room in Los Angeles on the eve of the Grammy’s. Houston was as well known for her breathtaking voice as she was for her checkered past abusing drugs and alcohol.

Jackson, Whinehouse, and Houston were all known to have a history of drug addiction, abuse, and depression. With all of the fame and riches at their disposal it is hard for some to understand how these incredibly talented performers could lose their battle with addiction.

TMZ reports singer Tony Bennett’s reaction to Houston’s death and the solution (some may call unusual) that he offered up at a pre-Grammy’s party. Bennett said, “First it was Michael Jackson, then Amy Winehouse, now the magnificent Whitney Houston. Let's legalize drugs, like Amsterdam, it's a very sane city now."

What was your reaction to Whitney Houston’s passing?

Do you think there would have been any benefit to Jackson, Winehouse, or Houston if drugs were legalized?

Make a Comment

SimplyDavia by SimplyDavia | HUNTSVILLE, AL
Feb 27, 2012

Rx drugs are killing people at a frightening rate and it's so scary to see that people underestimate the powefulness Of Rx drugs... Dr. Drew talks about this misconception extensively (Fri episode). I have lost 5 people in the last 2 years due to Rx abuse/misuse.

marti3276 by marti3276 | Elma, WA
Feb 19, 2012

Legalizing "drugs" would not solve any problems. Addiction is addiction, a disease. People who abuse drugs for the fun of it or to check out on reality will do what they please, whether drugs are illegal or not. Our state is trying to legalize marijuana. People in support of this must not really understand the negative effects that marijuana cause socially, economically, and physically. Regular marijuana use can cause lung problems, make the user unmotivated and withdrawn, and it also costs a considerable amount of Money. Other illegal drugs are illegal because they have been proven to be detrimental to society at large and to families and individuals.

FreeBeingX by FreeBeingX | ANCHORAGE, AK
Feb 16, 2012

Common sense is already legal. Being human is, for so many of us, being weak at times and bad in our judgement. Sex being legal does not stop rape. Legalization is not the problem here. That's just my opinion.

Suzhappy by Suzhappy | UNIONTOWN, PA
Feb 15, 2012

No I don't think legalizing drugs would help the problem at all. I agree with what the others said about us being a dependent society and legalizing drugs would just allow more abuse and demise.

kymnasium by kymnasium | Waianae, HI
Feb 14, 2012

My reaction to her passing is sadness not cause of maybe a drug overdose but because she made beauitful music for us to listen too & was so young to pass on. Feels a litle end to a great era of music from my time. I think legalizing drugs wouldn't have made a difference, everyone's body is different on how they react to drugs and maybe even if it was legal who knows how much anyone's body could handle before something fatal happens.

kailarl69 by kailarl69 | Saint marys, GA
Feb 14, 2012

The question is... why WOULD legalizing drugs help those battling addiction??? Legalizing drugs will just create more and more people like Whitney and Michael! So NO legalizing drugs is def not the answer!!!

Trudy13 by Trudy13 | SALT LAKE CTY, UT
Feb 14, 2012

I grew up with an alcoholic parent who was also addicted to prescription drugs. Legalizing would have done nothing except provide more heartbreak to our family including making it easier for my siblings to get drugs and become addicted themselves. My hubby is an ER physician who works with drug addicts all night. I asked him if it would be easier to legalize the drugs and he said absolutely not. It will cause more heartbreak. Those addicts will still be addicts. I wish those that want to legalize drugs could spend a week in the ER during night shifts with my hubby before they made a final decision.

Adinaofcolorado by Adinaofcolorado | Berthoud, CO
Feb 13, 2012

Legalizing drugs would make it safe for individuals to try different treatment approaches until they found what worked for them. As it is, people are forced into programs that don't work for everyone. The only thing these programs do is generate revenue. If people who were required to be in a program had the option of trying different ones without a penalty if the program didn't work for them - that would be a great thing. Right now there is no way to know what programs really work - people do whatever they have to do to get through the program and avoid going to jail.

hippychick by hippychick | HARTFORD CITY, IN
Feb 13, 2012

It was reported after Amy Winehouses autopsy she died of alcohol poisoning, she also had emphysema and cirrhosis of the liver. She was only 27, the drugs she was addicted to were legal cigaretts and alcohol. Such a same so young i can't imagine how many cigaretts or how much alcohol you would need to comsume daily to get those diseases at such a young age. So sad.

hippychick by hippychick | HARTFORD CITY, IN
Feb 13, 2012

I read the police found several bottles of prescribed medicine if she was addicted to drugs she had them leagally prescribed. If your addicted to any drug you'll do whatever it takes to get that drug doesn't matter if its legal or not.

didama by didama | MAPLEWOOD, NJ
Feb 13, 2012

What a strange comment for Tony Bennett to make? Types of drugs that Houston allegedly took were legal and she likely had a prescription.

luvkaibo by luvkaibo | Menifee, CA
Feb 13, 2012

Legalizing drugs wouldn't make a difference in my opinion. Legal or not, people can still abuse them and OD on them. If they have an addiction, unfortunately nothing will stop them. They need to seek help to treat the addiction.

rhamni by rhamni | GRAND RAPIDS, MI
Feb 13, 2012

Drugs were a huge part in the death of these people- but the main issue was with themselves. I believe that by legalizing illegal drugs right now would only fuel some people's addictions- and may also introduce other people to the drugs. Obviously, the people with the means will be able to get whatever drugs they desire- whether or not they're legal is another matter. Bottom line, legalizing drugs won't help prevent destructive behaviors. Household cleaners, pain killers and food are addicting in their own right to the people using them. There are plenty of items that are legal that are abused, the legality isn't the problem here. Proper education and reading the warning signs, knowing when to get help and learning how to gauge when you're over your head is one part to a much larger solution.

jygriebel by jygriebel | Marble, PA
Feb 13, 2012

I don't see how legalizing drugs will help prevent the deaths of those who are addicted.

lizbethspeaks by lizbethspeaks | TUCSON, AZ
Feb 13, 2012

What a ridiculous statement by Bennett! How about going after the enablers in these celebrities lives?! Her so-called friends, doctors, etc. look the other way because they are swayed by the allure of the money and power. These drugs she was taking were prescribed by doctors, not illegally.