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Cannabusiness Goes to Pot

My one and ­only run-in with the police occurred on a hot summer night in Portland, Oregon, a month or so before my junior year of high school. My friend and I, both seventeen years old, had—like more than 44 percent of Americans in our age group—­recently been introduced to cannabis, . . . . Continue Reading »

The Toll of Unbelief

On a single weekend in June 2021, seven people died of drug overdoses in Rochester, New York. On that Saturday morning, three adults were found dead on a front porch on a quiet, residential street. Inside the house were six orphaned children. Lab tests showed that the lethal agent was heroin laced . . . . Continue Reading »

Impersonal Responsibility

How are we to assign responsibility for the opioid epidemic? Patrick Radden Keefe—the New Yorker staff writer who in 2017 wrote a lengthy profile of the Sackler family, owners of Purdue Pharma—offers an easy answer in his new book Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the . . . . Continue Reading »

Reefer Sadness

Tell Your Children:  The Truth About Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence by alex berenson free press, 272 pages, $26 The smoking of marijuana, with its careful preparation of the elements and the solemn passing around of the shared joint, was the unholy communion of the counterculture . . . . Continue Reading »

Homeless in Seattle

My name is Gil ­Costello, and I live at one of the Pike Place Market’s senior housing buildings, the ­Stewart House. I am seventy years old. In 1955, at eight years old, I began my on-and-off life of homelessness. At age eleven, before becoming addicted to drugs, I learned to ride rails around . . . . Continue Reading »

The Fantasy of Addiction

I never meant to start an argument about addiction. I had carried my private doubts on the subject around in my head for years, in the “heresy” section where I keep my really risky thoughts. And I don’t recommend disagreeing in public with Hollywood royalty, either, which is how it happened. . . . . Continue Reading »

Saving Willy Loman

The focus on the increase in death rates for white Americans between ages 45-54 in the media obscures equally troubling results in Anne Case and Angus Deaton’s recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, “Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife . . . . Continue Reading »

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