Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New drug panic

I don't know much about salvia divinorum, except some rumors I heard during my more experimental days that the stuff can give you a pretty nasty high. That impression is reinforced by the entry over at Erowid, which says, "Its effects are considered unpleasant by many people." That makes it an unlikely candidate for reaching a wide audience of pleasure-seekers.

Nevertheless, the hallucinogen seems to be the panic-fueling drug of the moment, billed as the "next marijuana." (A hallucinogen is the next marijuana? How?) Florida is on the verge of banning the stuff because ... well, just because, as far as I can tell.

Other states are also considering criminalizing salvia divinorum after "[o]ne teen in Delaware killed himself because of Salvia" according to one report.

Ummm ... what? He killed himself because of the drug? Please explain.

To its credit, the Associated Press has a much clearer summary of the story.

In the Delaware suicide, the boy's mother told reporters that salvia made his mood darker but he justified its use by citing its legality. According to reports, the autopsy found no traces of the drug in his system, but the medical examiner listed it as a contributing cause.

So salvia divinorum wasn't even in his body when he killed himself, but he'd used it in the past, so the ME made a very tenuous link.

And thus is a modern urban legend born: salvia divinorum killed a kid in Delaware!

Mike Strain, a former Louisiana state legislator who pushed to outlaw salvia in his state, argues, "You don't make everybody happy when you outlaw drugs. You save one child and it's worth it."

But when police start arresting users and raiding dealers, and somebody gets shot by a pumped-up narc, will it still be "worth it?"



Blogger BobG said...

Sounds like a lot of BS over nothing; the stuff isn't that big of a deal from what I have researched. Sounds like another case of the media making whoopee, and some idiot politicians jumping on it.
Just my opinion.

March 11, 2008 11:42 AM  
Anonymous claude said...

I know several people who have tried it. I never have. The general consensus was that it was an interesting experience but not one that they would seek to do often, if ever again. Interesting note tho... when a local news station in the MPLS area ran a story on the stuff, all the places that sold it were sold out the next day. ;)

March 11, 2008 11:06 PM  
Blogger J.D. Tuccille said...

Hmmm ... So, this could be the best marketing plan ever!

March 12, 2008 7:29 AM  

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