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The Real Tragedy of Mac Miller's Death

Whether you loved him, hated him, or have never even heard of him until now, I think we can all agree on one thing: the sudden death of popular rapper Malcolm James McCormick, famously known as Mac Miller, is, for lack of a more appropriate term, tragic. Miller was found dead Friday from an apparent drug overdose. At only 26, it's easy to conclude that the well-known artist was way too young to die. Miller had just begun to open up about his ongoing struggles with addiction, depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. However, the real tragedy of Miller’s death lies far beyond Miller himself. The real tragedy is the tragedy of addiction, a disease that killed more than 70,000 people in the United States alone last year. A disease that has been recently mentioned in headline after headline along with several big-name artists, including Demi Lovato and Lil Peep. A disease that is simply misunderstood in our society. Addiction is oftentimes perceived as a choice and as something that an individual can “just just stop doing”. However, as seen through research and thousands of different studies, addiction is not this simple (if it were, nobody would be dying from it). Addiction causes significant physical changes in the brain, eventually making the user dependent upon the drug for proper functioning. “So why do drugs in the first place?” This is a common question that individuals who have no inclination to even trying to understand the disease ask. Addiction is typically a mixture of environmental and biological factors. For many, drugs are an escape and a coping mechanism; whether it be from trauma, other mental health issues (i.e. studies have shown that lots of people use drugs to cope with social anxiety and depression), or self-medication. But with the passing of Miller we find that the real tragedy of addiction still lingers on. While our favorite artists occasionally make headlines and trend on Twitter for overdosing, individuals around the world are dying every day. The real tragedy of Mac Miller's death is that he is not the only one. As Miller once said himself, "overdosing is just not cool. There’s no legendary romance. You don’t go down in history because you overdosed. You just die.”

If you or somebody you know struggles with addiction, please call 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

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