How a Single Oxycontin Pill Nearly Ruined One Man’s Life
Over the last several years, media outlets have reported hundreds of horror stories about Florida’s prescription drug epidemic. News consumers have been treated to stories about crooked doctors, shady pharmacists, and pill-popping addicts with violent tendencies and bad parenting skills. But as is so often the case with drug war coverage, there’s more to the story than that.
There are nonviolent offenders who aren’t addicts, or dealers, or scammers. You don’t hear their stories from drug warriors, because they can’t be used to bolster the case for prohibition. You also don’t hear their stories from bipartisan drug policy reformers, because these people don’t need addiction recovery treatment. They don’t really need anything at all.
Nevertheless, many of these people have had their lives turned upside down in the name of public safety and public health, and are worse off for it, financially and emotionally. We asked Reason magazine’s Facebook followers to tell us if they knew someone who had been put through the ringer after being caught with a small amount of drugs. We promised anonymity, so long as we could verify their claims. A man who we’ll call “James” reached out to us. This is his story. Read more
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