By 2013, a new sort of woman was using heroin: Affluent women. Middle aged, middle-class women with carpools. Gen X moms recovering from knee surgeries. College girls with double majors. Women with incomes above $50,000 and private health insurance. Women who had been taking Oxycodone and Vicodin because they’re excellent pain-relievers. Superior to a vodka tonic. Better than smoking a joint.
The CDC declared opioid abuse an epidemic in back in 2011. In October, President Trump declared the epidemic a health emergency. According to the CDC, heroin and opioid use among women doubled between 2004 and 2013—a rate twice that of men. More women are dying from prescription pain pills than ever before. Since 1999, the number of fatal overdoses among women has increased 400 percent, among men, 265.
Kinda puts that whole pot is addictive post in perspective.
Public-health experts worry about the increasingly potent options available, and the striking number of constant users. “Cannabis is potentially a real public-health problem,” said Mark A. R. Kleiman, a professor of public policy at New York University. “It wasn’t obvious to me 25 years ago, when 9 percent of self-reported cannabis users over the last month reported daily or near-daily use. I always was prepared to say, ‘No, it’s not a very abusable drug. Nine percent of anybody will do something stupid.’ But that number is now [something like] 40 percent.” They argue that state and local governments are setting up legal regimes without sufficient public-health protection, with some even warning that the country is replacing one form of reefer madness with another, careening from treating cannabis as if it were as dangerous as heroin to treating it as if it were as benign as kombucha.
But cannabis is not benign, even if it is relatively benign, compared with alcohol, opiates, and cigarettes, among other substances. Thousands of Americans are finding their own use problematic in a climate where pot products are getting more potent, more socially acceptable to use, and yet easier to come by, not that it was particularly hard before.
A lot of public policy yet to be worked out here. Lot’s of potential problems.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) isn’t exactly known as big fan of marijuana. But in a new Federal Register filing set to be published soon, the anti-drug agency is moving to more than quintuple the amount of cannabis that can legally be grown in the U.S. for research purposes—from roughly 1,000 pounds in 2018 to more than 5,400 pounds next year.
Could have told you that like a decade ago.