Metcalf: Keep watch for the plague

I chose to write this column because of the life-long effect the “plague” that is alive and well in Clark County has had on me.

The plague knows no boundaries — not social, not economic, not by education level, not religious, not racial and not by gender.

Borders do not constrain the plague. It cannot be contained by fences or walls or even shuffled off to the less desirable areas of town. The plague does not discriminate; no one is immune to it or its effects. Forty-four percent of Americans know someone who has the plague.

Approximately 18,000 children in Kentucky are being raised by a grandparent becasue to the plague. In 2015, 13 lives were ended suddenly, because the plague kills indiscriminately.

Have you guessed what this vile, evil plague I have chosen to write about is? If so, what are you experiencing now, what emotions are you facing? Is it anger, disgust, sadness, fear, hopelessness, regret or embarrassment?

The plague of addiction will cause you to experience emotions when it, without invitation, barges into your life. When the plague enters, your life will be forever changed, your emotional reaction to discussion about the plague will never be the same.

This column will put on display every side of the plague. I will bring forth statistics. I will include interviews from those who are afflicted with the plague. I will interview those who have overcome the plague and those who have been affected through an afflicted family member.

I will discuss the economic impact, the social impact and the impact upon our children. I welcome your input as the plague truly affects all of us.

Until next week, keep watch for the plague as it is probably already in your neighborhood.

Ken Metcalf is a transplant to Winchester of nine years and has been working with the addicted for more than a decade. He can be reached at