My opinion

By Dr. Deepak Gupta , Ms. Kaya Chakrabortty
Corresponding Author Dr. Deepak Gupta
Self, - United States of America
Submitting Author Dr. Deepak Gupta
Other Authors Ms. Kaya Chakrabortty
Self, - United States of America


Substance, Abuse, Genes, Evolution

Gupta D, Chakrabortty K. "Dear substance! please leave me alone," humane plea falling on deaf ears of substance. WebmedCentral DRUG ABUSE 2021;12(9):WMC005740

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License(CC-BY), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Submitted on: 30 Aug 2021 07:12:23 PM GMT
Published on: 15 Sep 2021 07:30:49 AM GMT

My opinion

Although we call it to be substance abuse when humans abuse substances, it may rather be the other way around where substances are abusing humans not unlike domestic abuse [1] whereby humans are victims and substances are perpetrators which human systems can only seize and burn while in the meantime human victims suffer physical, psychological, social, economic, spiritual and legal punishments. The bottom-line is again that there may be innately unforced or environmentally forced absence of freedom to quit among humans driving humans' victimization by substances which may be trying to survive in this natural world of selfish "immortal" gene [2] by initially growing as unwanted weeds out there in the ancient wild followed by humans domesticating them for humans' physical, psychological, social, economic and spiritual needs until the substances became greedy enough wanting to outlive humans that they mesmerized domesticating humans who could not control overproduction of these domesticated weeds and thus bringing down injurious harms upon the domesticated modern humanity [3]. Interestingly, our modern humanity refuses to learn from its troubled past and repetitively commits similar mistakes because existence of humanity is always in a state of war with existence of substances with both trying to overrule each other for continued persistence on the earth. Before it becomes confusing, most of the current substances abusing humans are organic and thus these substances' genes are trying to survive by overcoming humans' genes vying for humans' survival until they balance out for evolutionary stable strategy of co-existence. Interestingly, the co-existence of substances and humans may have to keep a check on their growing numbers with substances inadvertently acting as population stabilizing strategy in natural selection of humans while humans inadvertently acting on morally and legally stable strategy to maintain substances at manageable levels. This analogy become confusing when the substance abusing humans is inorganic. However, inorganic substances creating inorganic life [4] as a devilish adversary to humanity may not be futuristic after all when inorganic myths and ideas may have outlived ancient humanity and their genes via the perceived ghosts called minds in the speaking and writing machines called humans [5]. If substances cannot listen and follow a path of self-destruction for themselves because of their innate need to exist and persist, humans may have to listen to their own innate need to exist and persist so that humans do not follow the path of self-destruction [6]. However, as all existence is chained one way or another [7], humans are dependent on others to co-exist or maybe outlive others (humans or substances). Therefore, the best way of preventing humans from treading on self-destructive pathways will be fact-finding and fact-sharing with those on self-destructive pathways because facts are always better [8] whereby facts being never complete can always change thus preventing humans from clinging to facts as compared to so-called truths which become irrefutable despite facts stating otherwise thus leading humans to cling onto them even when such truths pose the risk of self-destruction sometimes even in the immediate future. The fact is that there is no discernible purpose of life except the invented purpose of life and those on self-destructive pathways may have been having difficulty in inventing the purpose of life because they have realized and thence gotten stuck in the factually absent purpose of life. Therefore, once they relearn to invent purpose of life, they can understand why humanity abhors self-destruction despite unflinchingly destructing everything else. In the fight for survival between the selfish genes of substance vs. the selfish genes of humans, humans may have to understand that substances do not want to kill the human hosts which are allowing the existence, persistence and even proliferation of substances' genes until the prolific genes of substances become so abundant that human mortality become so rampant forcing the humanity overall to initiate measures for containing, limiting and restricting the boundless proliferation of substances to eventually ensure balanced co-existence of humans' genes and substances' genes.

After understanding the instinct of substances' genes to survive, the so-called self-destructive humans must understand why the other humans who are apparently not so self-destructive want them to contain their self-destruction say in terms of substance abuse. Self-destructive humans' innate instincts may have their own incentive to keep self-destructive humans chained to substances in attempts to balance their innate conscious or unconscious emotions, feelings, behaviors and beliefs [5]. Self-destructive humans' kin may have their own incentive to keep self-destructive humans under control so as to avoid destruction physically, psychologically, socially, economically, legally, and spiritually percolating into kin. Similarly, self-destructive humans' society may have their own incentive to keep self-destructive humans under control so as to avoid socioeconomic and legal costs to the society. Finally, humanity may have its own incentive to keep self-destructive humans under control so as to avoid the extinction of humanity from the face of the earth. 

To explore further, we delved into the minds of 130 college students (>95% aged 18-29 years and >52% being female) in the United States whose responses were bought [9] from SurveyMonkey as targeted audiences and those audiences responded to the following questions:

  • What is your view about NICOTINE use advertisements?

(Nicotine: Smoking, Vaping, Chewing, and Other Forms)

    • They should be PROHIBITED as nicotine use is harmful
    • They should be REGULATED as nicotine use is widespread
    • They should be PROMOTED as nicotine use is beneficial
  • What is your view about ALCOHOL use advertisements?

(Alcohol: All Alcoholic Beverages Including Beer)

    • They should be PROHIBITED as alcohol use is harmful
    • They should be REGULATED as alcohol use is widespread
    • They should be PROMOTED as alcohol use is beneficial
  • What is your view about CANNABIS use advertisements?

(Cannabis: Marijuana and Related Products, Prescription Or Recreational)

    • They should be PROHIBITED as cannabis use is harmful
    • They should be REGULATED as cannabis use is widespread
    • They should be PROMOTED as cannabis use is beneficial
  • What is your view about MEDICATION use advertisements?

(Medication: Prescription Opioids, Prescription Stimulants Like Methamphetamine, Prescription Sedatives Like Benzodiazepines, Or Prescription Club Drugs Like Ketamine)

    • They should be PROHIBITED as medication use is harmful
    • They should be REGULATED as medication use is widespread
    • They should be PROMOTED as medication use is beneficial
  • In your view, why do some people NEVER use any of the following substance?

(Nicotine/Alcohol/Cannabis/Opioids/Stimulants Like Cocaine/Sedatives Like Benzodiazepines/Club Drugs Like Dissociators/Hallucinogens/Inhalants)

  • In your view, why do some people START using any of the following substance?

(Nicotine/Alcohol/Cannabis/Opioids/Stimulants Like Cocaine/Sedatives Like Benzodiazepines/Club Drugs Like Dissociators/Hallucinogens/Inhalants)

  • In your view, why do some people CONTINUE using any of the following substance?

(Nicotine/Alcohol/Cannabis/Opioids/Stimulants Like Cocaine/Sedatives Like Benzodiazepines/Club Drugs Like Dissociators/Hallucinogens/Inhalants)

  • In your view, why do some people QUIT using any of the following substance?

(Nicotine/Alcohol/Cannabis/Opioids/Stimulants Like Cocaine/Sedatives Like Benzodiazepines/Club Drugs Like Dissociators/Hallucinogens/Inhalants)

As envisaged earlier [10], it was interesting to see that most chose regulations of nicotine, alcohol, cannabis and medication use advertisements (51%, 78%, 68% and 75% respectively) rather than prohibitions of nicotine, alcohol, cannabis and medication use advertisements (45%, 18%, 18% and 14% respectively). Moreover, quite a few recognized beneficial nicotine, alcohol, cannabis and medication use and thus promoted their advertisements (4%, 4%, 13% and 12% respectively). Although 26% expressly stated fear of addiction/dependence preventing people from ever using any substance, 60% expressly stated addiction/dependence forcing people to continue using any substance. Interestingly, 2% expressly stated adventure of substance use being addicting in itself leading people to start using any substance while only 11% expressly stated addiction/dependence as the reason for people quitting the use of any substance.

Essentially, substances have innate need to proliferate their genes and it may be in the best interests of humans to see through destructive substances inducing addiction among humans as an attempt by substances’ genes to outlive humans’ genes. Hereafter, humans may have to learn to create layers of separation between themselves and substances by filling families/friends and constructive substances/activities in as those layers of separation [11]. However, while filling these layers of separation, humans may have to remember that evolutionarily humans are more likely selected to be copiers rather than to be innovators [12]. Therefore, just like any other behavior [13], addictive behaviors of humans to substances may be contagious [14-16] to their families/friends unless and until families/friends see through destructive substances’ addiction and help self-destructive kin to see themselves through their addiction to substances.  


  1. Simplest definition of "CAGE" abuse: Whenever freedom to quit is absent, abuse is happening.
  2. The Selfish Gene: 40th Anniversary Edition (Oxford Landmark Science).
  3. Nationalism in the 21st Century - Yuval Noah Harari at the India Today Conclave 2018. IYrHTs&t=5215s
  4. Surviving in 21st century by Noah Harari | Top discussions | Intellectual discussion | Top authors. WrsHM&t=978s
  5. The Logic of Self-Destruction: The Algorithm of Human Rationality.
  6. 10 Reasons Why People Continue to Use Drugs: The irrationality of decision-making in addiction. ue-use-drugs
  7. The relevance of Jean-Jacques Rousseau 300 years after his birth. his-birth.html
  8. Two Realities: Truth and Fact (and They’re Not the Same). https ://
  9. Buying Responses with SurveyMonkey Audience. https://help.surveymonk
  10. Health Care Infinity: Prohibit Regulate Normalize.
  11. Everything you think you know about addiction is wrong.
  12. The Evolution of Creativity | Gifford Lectures 2019 | Prof Mark Pagel | Pt 2. uj_CY4&t=1125s
  13. When You Can’t Stop Competing With Your Spouse. https:/ /
  14. Is Drinking Contagious? An Analysis of the Collectivity of Drinking Behavior Theory Within a Multilevel Framework. cle/52/6/692/4082179
  15. A Contagious Disease Model for Researching and Intervening in Heroin Epidemics. https://jamanetwork.c om/journals/jamapsychiatry/article-abstract/490703
  16. Alcohol is Addictive… But is it Also Contagious? https://drugabuse. com/blog/alcohol-is-addictive-but-is-it-also-contagious/

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