Another day, another swing and a miss from the mainstream media.
ABC News, bless ‘em, reported yesterday that crystal meth is making a resurgence on the streets of America, and to read their version of events, society is doomed and there is nothing we can do about it.
We’ve long known about the Big Pharma fueled opioid epidemic gripping large swaths of our country, but a report released last month by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) showed that beyond the scourge of the painkiller-to-heroin gateway, between the years 2011-2016, the U.S. witnessed a tripling of the rate of overdose deaths due to meth.
It’s probably just coincidence that this uptick in overdose deaths and an overall rise in the purity level of seized product ran parallel with the final seasons of the hit TV series Breaking Bad, but the DEA is reporting that the street price of meth is the lowest that they’ve seen in years, and that the drug is highly prevalent in the mid-eastern and southern regions of the U.S.
This is all true, no doubt, but where the ABC News piece falls short is when the reporter discusses potential treatment options, or specifically a lack thereof, for methamphetamine users who want, or need, to get clean.
The article quotes Dr. David Persse, an EMS physician director in Houston, as saying, ““If we had five or six miracle drugs it’s still gonna be difficult to know which one that patient needs.”
A “miracle drug”, eh? Hold that thought, doc…
The article concludes without mentioning some very relevant news from earlier this month when researchers in Australia discovered that by administering controlled doses of CBD to meth-addicted rats, the natural and non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis and hemp plants reduced the rats’ cravings for more methamphetamines.
In the experiment, the rats were given the ability to self-administer small doses of meth, but when given ample amounts of CBD, the critters lost the urge to get spun. The research also determined that CBD could be useful to prevent relapse in subjects experiencing prolonged periods of abstinence from meth use.
"This is the first demonstration that cannabidiol can reduce the motivation to seek and consume methamphetamine, and suggests that cannabidiol might be worth trialing as a novel pharmacotherapy for methamphetamine dependence,” the report concluded.
Most level-headed cannabis activists or advocates will stop short of referring to the plant as a “miracle drug”, though the healing powers of cannabis are undeniable against a wide-ranging list of ailments and prior studies like the one cited from Australia have shown that CBD can also be very helpful in treating cocaine, tobacco, and heroin addiction.
But ABC News and the good doctor from the Lone Star State somehow fail to mention this groundbreaking research.
Another interesting tidbit from the CDC study that just so happens to hit home for Dr. Persse is that fact that overdoses due to methamphetamine use now outnumber those due to heroin with 813 people dying in Texas in 2017 alone from crystal meth overdoses.
Is there any correlation between that damning stat and the fact that Texas remains one of the most reluctant Red States to allow for an honest debate about cannabis reform?
Will other traditionally meth-laced states like Oklahoma and Missouri who recently passed substantial cannabis reform laws see a decline in use and/or overdoses of crystal meth?
Hey ABC News, there’s some leads for you!