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Ron Patton | January 4, 2023

In the slums of some of America’s largest cities, it seems the zombie apocalypse is already upon us. Only it’s not a virus or a curse turning people into walking shells of their former selves – it’s drug addiction. Sadly, it’s like the land of the living dead. Now, manufacturers and dealers are combining drugs to create what police are calling “excited delirium,” evidenced by a hypnotic and aggressive state. Those who witness this behavior have compared it to demonic possessionTonight on Ground Zero, Clyde Lewis talks with the co-founder of Recovery Consultants, Shirley Wantland about SKID ROW ZOMBIES.







I said something the other night to a caller that got e a few e-mails wanting me to elaborate on what I meant by it.

I asked the question “What is a monster?”  when the caller didn’t know I said, “Monsters are people who have stopped pretending.”

It is a cynical view of how people sometimes pretend to be nice when deep down they have dark and creative ways of dealing with people they don’t necessarily agree with.

It is like the quote that Joker says to Batman in that movie:

When the chips are down, these civilized people will eat each other. You’ll see. I’ll show you.

In the movie, the Joker was proven wrong — but now I am not so sure about that.

Much has been said on this program about scarcity and how America is heading for a collapse of the food chain and other resources. This can trigger major upheaval, with food riots and looting among other things associated with what is called apocalyptic morality.

It puts you in a position where you ask yourself, just how far would you go to survive. Do you have a storage of food? Are you prepared for the unspeakable?  If we do wind up with food scarcity and shortages, are people going to walk aimlessly through the streets looking for food?

Would they be so desperate that they would trap and eat your pets? Maybe chase down and eat rats or roadkill?

Maybe they would choose to eat you.

When western anthropologists first heard reports of witch doctors who could issue deadly curses, they quickly found rational explanations. The families of the cursed often felt there was no point wasting food on the “walking dead”, for example. That’s why many of the cursed would die: simple starvation.

Many of them would walk in a daze; some were starving to the point of wanting to eat another human. Their normal lives were literally taken from them, they had nothing to live for, and really had no reason to behave in a civilized matter. It became evident that the so called curse was a traumatic psychological event and they would become more like predators.

Starvation. is not necessarily a curse that created the emaciated Zombie.  Starvation left the person in a stupor, aimlessly looking for a connection or a bite to eat.

With the prevailing eschatology and the predictions of the world apocalypse, I can now see that a critical mass of individuals are giving up or becoming hostile because all they hear about is how their future is going to be an apocalyptic cataclysm.

We are seeing that people who used to love life begin to lose their zest for life. We begin to see children thinking about suicide or even killing playmates. We are hearing about children who sexually assault other children and we are hearing about bullying and how those who are bullied have an audience on YouTube saying goodbye and some taking their lives for all to see.

Yes, we are living in a dystopia and with the Discordian fate of the number 23 all of those random chaotic thoughts and nightmares may manifest and when they do, the trip will not be for the faint of heart.

Dystopian narratives have long been an alluring and thought-provoking form of entertainment, especially for those who take an interest in studying social and political structures. From classics like Nineteen Eighty-Four and Brave New World — Soylent Green and Children of Men — we have seen possible futures being portents and cautionary tales.

We have also seen extreme dystopias in TV series like the Walking Dead.

Their attractiveness within American society is not surprising. Our lives are driven by fear. Fear leads us to spend and consume; fear leads us to withdraw from our communities; and fear leads us to apathy regarding our own social and political processes. This fear is conditioned as much as it is natural.

I have heard many times that my shows create fear — but it is not fear that I wish to promote, it is information that warns, and predicts coming storms.

Every paranormal angle can be seen, every coincidence talked about, and sometimes there are people that don’t understand why I just don’t rattle off about the political nonsense in Washington.

Because anyone can do that– not everyone can look back at history and see how human behavior continues to betray us, not only our human spirit but our common sense.

Back in 2012, I was inking a deal with an important syndication company to get my show out to more markets. There were many shows the company that signed me listened to, but one that stood out was how I reported the grotesque story of the Causeway Cannibal.

The story if you remember was about a guy named Rudy Eugene who ate the face off of a homeless drifter on the Miami MacArthur Causeway. Police say they emptied 5 rounds into the attacker before he was killed.

In my Dark Ground Zero way, I gave an observation about the possibility that the Causeway cannibal would trigger a bunch of similar attacks and that maybe we were seeing the beginnings of the Zombie Apocalypse.

This case was part of at least 6 other cases where people demonstrated superhuman strength and growled at police before they were apprehended. There seemed to be other unrelated cases where peculiar behaviors were noted by the police and many of them sounded like they could be included in a horror film.

A brutal case that followed was the story of a guy in New Jersey who police say stabbed himself several times and then threw his skin and intestines at the officers.

The crazed man was in the corner of the room with a knife in his hand, and he stood up, he yelled at the police while stabbing himself all over his body. Officers noticed that his intestines were protruding from a wound in his abdomen and when the man saw what he had done began cutting his intestines and skin hurling them at the officers.

This triggered speculation that many of the cases were brought on by using bath salts, MDPV, or synthetic cathinones.

The use of these substances would trigger what doctors call excited delirium.  There are some people that argue that there is no proof that excited delirium is a real condition or if Synthetic cathinones were to blame for the hideous and terrifying behavior of these Zombie-like cases.

In fact, it was revealed that in the causeway cannibal case that Rudy Eugene was found to have traces of Cannabis in his system.

So what triggered this behavior?

Behind all political battles, social critiques, and theoretical inquiries lie the most fundamental question: when left to our own accord, how will we interact with one another? How one answers this question usually goes a long way to how one perceives the world, and how issues are viewed and opinions are formed. To our dismay, potential answers are typically presented in dualities. Are we good or evil? Competitive or cooperative? Generous or greedy? Violent or peaceful?

A common theme among religions has been that human beings are “born into sin” and heavily influenced by “evil forces” to do harmful things. One who embraces this theme will tend to have less faith in humanity than one who does not.

For, if we really are engaging in a daily struggle to resist the powers of evil, it is reasonable to assume that evil will take hold of many. How can we trust anyone who, at a moment’s notice, could potentially lose the ability to act on their own conscience?

You would begin to lose trust in humanity, you stay in your homes, isolated and afraid of others in the marketplace.

It would be terrifying to live in a place where spontaneous acts of murder and evil happen. It would sound like something out of a George Romero movie.

Unfortunately, this spontaneous evil is happening where I live.

A mother and child were waiting for a train at the Gateway station in Portland Oregon. Gateway is just a few miles from where I live.

Brianna Workman, a 32-year-old woman shoved the three-year-old child, off of the platform and onto the train tracks without provocation.

A train was coming and onlookers were able to rescue the child. A video of the incident has since gone viral.

The video shows a woman – later identified sitting on a bench behind the mother and child as several other passengers also stood on the station platform.

Suddenly, the suspect is seen leaping to her feet and shoving the little child onto the tracks.

The three-year-old landed face-first on the metal rail and rocks before being quickly rescued from the train tracks, officials said.

Thankfully, the child escaped largely unscathed before a train pulled in, suffering a severe headache and a small red mark on the forehead.

Authorities said that Workman – a 32-year-old homeless woman – carried out the attack “without provocation”.

She was arrested and charged with attempted assault in the first degree, assault in the third degree, interfering with public transportation, disorderly conduct in the second degree and recklessly endangering another person.

Court records show that she had been living in a homeless shelter at the time of the incident.

Just two weeks after that incident, another macabre and brutal attack took place at another train station no more than 10 miles away.

A young suspect  attacked a 78-year-old man on another train platform in a Portland suburb and chewed off the victim’s ear and part of his face before police could intervene,

Police say that the injuries on the man’s face were so bad that they could see his skull.

Police found the suspect still attacking the victim.

In 911 dispatch audio from Tuesday morning, a responder can be heard saying: “Half of this guy’s face appears to be chewed off.”

The suspect gave the fake name “El Baker” when he was arrested, police said. Using fingerprint technology they identified the attacker as 25-year-old Koryn Kraemer, who police said recently moved to Portland from Georgia, is in custody facing likely second-degree assault charges.

They are investigating whether or not a new formula of drugs influenced the attacker.

Again thoughts of a zombie apocalypse echo through the internet as stories like these go viral.

The likelihood of a zombie apocalypse like the ones portrayed in movies and TV shows is slim to say the least, but in the slums of some of America’s largest cities, it seems the apocalypse is already upon us. Only it’s not a virus or a curse turning people into walking shells of their former selves – it’s drug addiction.

Between 2010 and 2020, the number of calls made to San Francisco’s 311 lines complaining of used hypodermic needles on sidewalks, in parks, and elsewhere rose from 224 to 6,275. In 2018, footage of dozens of people slumped over at an entrance to a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) station, many with needles in their arms, went viral.

The people were in what authorities call a Heroin freeze.

It’s like the land of the living dead.

Now drug dealers are combining drugs to create what police are calling excited delirium, where a combination of these drugs creates a blackout aggressive state.

Fentanyl is now combined with other drugs, such as heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and MDMA. This is because it takes very little to produce a high with fentanyl, making it a cheaper option. This is especially risky when people taking drugs don’t realize they might contain fentanyl as a cheap but dangerous additive. They might be taking stronger opioids than their bodies are used to and can be more likely to overdose.

There are many addicts that are seen doing violent acts to themselves, slapping, hitting, and banging their heads against the wall. Later the victim can develop Hypoxia that can lead to a coma and permanent brain damage and even death.

Some experience what is termed excited delirium

It is also known as agitated delirium, which is a condition where patients exhibit psychomotor agitation, delirium, and sweating. It may include attempts at violence, unexpected strength, and very high body temperature.

Over the past decade, the Excited Delirium Syndrome has raised continued controversy regarding the cause and manner of death of some highly agitated persons held in police custody, restrained or incapacitated by electrical devices. At autopsy, medical examiners have difficulty identifying an anatomic cause of death, but frequently cite psycho-stimulant intoxication as a contributing factor.

Those who witness excited delirium have compared it to demonic possession.

The victim is overly aggressive and yet in a hypnotic state.  What is most disconcerting is when those who show signs of agitated delirium eventually collapse –and are later found to not be on any drugs.

For example:

A porn actor who reportedly killed a man in Canada dismembered his body, and ate flesh from his corpse, fled Canada and was eventually caught in Germany. He was not on any drugs.

A Maryland man allegedly admitted to eating the heart and brain of his dismembered roommate. The media reported that the man was on the drug Flaaka. It was found that the man had a few beers.

While the precise cause and mechanism of the lethality of the condition remain controversial, the likely whys and wherefores of the sudden death of Excited Delirium Syndrome victims are seen to be “biological,” since excessive dopamine in the brain triggers the manic excitement and delirium, which unabated leads to cardiovascular collapse.

The heart tends to explode.

This condition is also known as “werewolfing.” Authorities compare these cases with the werewolves of the past, who are said to have appeared during the full moon.

The relationship between traditional belief and social discipline is just one of the themes that have been developed recently in social and cultural analyses of paranormal events. In most scientific circles logic seem to rule out any and all descriptions of what can be considered fringe events.

This does not, however, mean that things that are completely out of the norm do not happen. Most things remain mysterious until science steps in and tidy up any and all speculation about anything that can be termed supernatural by any standard of belief.

For now, the problem seems to be running rampant in the homeless populations of big cities.

These skid-row zombies are seen just sitting or sleeping on sidewalks.  The aggressive element of this makes us feel a little paranoid about just how safe we are.

Anyone around us can be a ticking time bomb, waiting to explode.  It is a plague of personality engineering, creating hidden monsters in our midst.

There are many things in this toxic world that can trigger an inner beast.

There are powers in this world that are not always connected to flesh and blood – and the thought of any transformation or shape-shifting on a grander scale take a lot more work to suspend belief.

These acts of brutality that we have heard about, these violent deaths, and cannibalism, can be the symptom if an even darker disease that is taking over people.

Triggered by an environment that is full of toxic concoctions that people are willing to put into their bodies without thinking of what it might do to them and their DNA.

Keep in mind that we can only look at them and say that They have a problem, not realizing that we may be taking part and contributing to the problem ourselves.

We are enabling and in some cases even nurturing people who are influenced by strong and evil metaphysical forces while also being drawn toward callous, self-interests.

The potential threat of flesh-eating zombie hoards becomes an afterthought to the clear and present danger of “evil” humans who are out to get one another or the Skid Row Zombie that may see an opportunity to push a defenseless child in front of an oncoming train,

Scarcity breeds a hunger that certainly cannot be filled. Drugs become a substitute– a catalyst that opens a new and brutal training ground for the demonic new normal.

Is it appropriate to apply Darwin’s evolutionary theories in a social sense where the “fit” is meant to gain wealth and power over the “weak”?

The weak are no longer as weak as we think.  They are using drugs that make them aggressive and terrifying.

There may be a pattern soon enough as we are seeing more people suffering silently. Some are isolated and alone. Some are still frightened to leave their homes since the pandemic.

Daily, the human toll of the lockdown stupidity and fear reporting have damaged many wonderful people. Some of them are also in hell of living day to day alone or on the streets,

Arguably, the powers that be have created or in the process of creating the perfect slave, a skid-row zombie. The perfect subject can be triggered by something very simple and innocuous.

The governments of the world are breeding stock of compliant children, the pro-science-is-our-savior types that ignore those who have decided to stop pretending.

Let’s face an uncomfortable truth,  the underlying message is population control.

Those who are drugging and starving the world are making their fortunes in promoting death and terror.  It is just part of the cycle for them.  Just another, murder and dismemberment. Just another homeless mentally ill person walking the street naked and afraid.

Just another child that has to learn the hard way, that it can no longer trust anyone.



Shirley Wantland is the Co-founder & Principal of Recovery Consultants, LLC, which provides a full continuum of recovery services to individuals & families struggling with substance use disorder, and mental and behavioral health issues.  She graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Psychology.  She has been in the healthcare industry for the past 19 years with experience in the pharmaceutical & behavioral health industries.

She is dedicated to serving and advocating for those who feel shamed and stigmatized by addiction or mental health issues.  She believes in compassionate, non-judgmental care for all who are seeking help. Shirley has served on the Board of Directors of Center for Open Recovery & Sky’s the Limit Fund, two nonprofit organizations where the aim is to end the stigma of addiction and helps families in crisis gain access to wilderness therapy programs for their adolescents & young adults, respectively.


Written by Ron Patton


This post currently has 4 comments.

  1. Greg

    January 5, 2023 at 4:39 am

    Most people dont realize how strong they can be. We use a lot of our energy thinking and doing things while being limited by what we were taught in school. When someone is drugged that all goes away. They get animal strength. Even small animals can be incredibly strong. In the epic of gilgamesh a strong wild man is befriended by civilized people and he starts losing his strength. He starts learning how to function in a civilized manner and then feels sad that he loses his primal strength, he misses the feeling of the wind when he runs. These people on drugs are usually malnourished, when they get off their high they start feeling it. What would happen if all the people on prescription drugs could not get them. People on antidepressants would go through serious mood altering phases.

  2. SARGE

    January 5, 2023 at 2:04 pm


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