a cause of suffering or trouble
scourge - curse
The word ‘scourge’ was initially used to describe a whip used to inflict punishment. It has since been adapted to refer to something that is regarded as being a source of great pain or concern. The term implies that it is something severe enough that it needs to be addressed urgently rather than simply left alone. Often used in relation to things like war, poverty, and drugs.
Police have implemented new and harsh penalties to combat the scourge of open drug use in the city centre.
In the age of social media, the scourge of misinformation is more prevalent than ever. It can be very hard to judge what is really happening in the world.
Corruption continues to be this organization’s biggest scourge. I don’t feel that those in charge have done nearly enough to root it out.