Philip Seymour Hoffman was a great actor, no one can dispute that. But that doesn’t mean he was a great person or a great father. And while everyone has his or her right to their opinion, one can’t be a great anything, without being a decent person first. Hoffman was a drug addict; no more, no less. That’s why he introduced himself as an addict. He was obviously under no delusion. Drug abuse or addiction of any kind is terribly unfortunate but we are not animals and we do have choice. Hoffman made his choice and that is more tragic than sad.
I understand addiction quite well. I’ve seen it up close and personal. It’s terribly powerful for the person who is predisposed that way but that doesn’t mean it can’t be controlled. In fact, Hoffman was straight for 22 years before getting back in to dope. That’s a pretty good run. The alcoholic is never recovered, even after years of sobriety. The alcoholic who chooses not to drink is in recovery until the day he or she dies. The same is true for the addict. In those 22 years he must have had the urge, the need to buy and shoot drugs but he resisted. Makes no difference the reason, the fact is he did. Was the success too much for him? Maybe. Were his demons simply too much to overcome? Obviously, but in the end it doesn’t really matter. He chose that needle and those bags of heroin, over the desire to love and care for his three children. He made the conscious decision to withdraw $1,200 from his bank, buy dope and shoot up, costing him his life. That is the very definition of tragic; everything in the world to live for but choosing death instead.
By the time Hoffman shot up for the last time, it was obviously too late for him to be helped. But taking his child to the Superbowl should have been his priority but he selfishly chose the drugs instead. Sadness can never be attributed to anyone who makes a choice because so many people have no choice. Sadness is what we should all feel for his partner and children. They are left with the memory of a man who died alone with a needle in his arm. It’s sickening and for that he should not be remembered as a hero simply because he was famous. He should be remembered as a weak, sick, selfish man who chose his addiction over his family.