(Please refer to link for news article. Source: CBC News)
Back in February, I blogged about the so called Ecstasy deaths in Calgary and how the culprit was not Ecstasy but PMMA, a dangerous compound which mimics some of MDMA’s effects. Last week, Dr. Perry Kendall, health officer of British Columbia made headlines when he admitted that pure Ecstasy can be safely consumed by adults in a clinical setting, though he does not condone recreational use. Initially, there appeared to be some confusion as to whether Dr. Kendall was calling for the legalization of Ecstasy, which he denied. He later clarified his position, stating that he believes if MDMA is ever legalized, it should be regulated and sold through government run outlets. “(If) you knew what a safe dosage was, you might be able to buy ecstasy like you could buy alcohol from a government-regulated store,” Kendall said in an interview. “We accept the fact that alcohol, which is inherently dangerous, is a product over a certain age that anybody can access. “So I don’t think the issue is a technical one of how we would manage that. The issue is a political, perceptual one.”
Even while the RCMP are adamant that Ecstasy is dangerous, Dr. Kendall asserts that the problem arises when Ecstasy is mixed with other dangerous compounds and sold on the black market with no quality control standards. “Unless you are getting it from a psychiatrist in a legitimate clinical trial, at the present time you can’t guarantee what’s in it, how much of it there is, or its safety, so I would say as we have said in the past — don’t take it,” Kendall told CBC News. The good doctor, along with other medical practitioners even compared the tainted Ecstasy dilemma to alcohol prohibition in the 1920’s. “Methyl alcohol led to huge rates of morbidity and mortality in the United States under alcohol prohibition because of illicit alcohol manufacturing,” said Dr. Evan Wood, a lead researcher at the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS and internationally-recognized expert in drug addiction and related policies.
“PMMA is a natural and expected consequence of the prohibition on ecstasy.” No kidding. If health care professionals admit that MDMA is safe when administered in the correct dosage in clinical settings, why won’t the government legalize it, at least for psychiatric use? They are certainly not the first to put forward these astute observations. The Shulgins, Leo Zeff and other well respected psychiatrists have used MDMA in therapeutic sessions with numerous patients from the 1970’s up until it was criminalized. Several reports have been published about the benefits of Ecstasy in helping people to overcome emotional blockages that conventional therapy was unable to accomplish. In spite of the aforementioned personalities’ valiant efforts to keep MDMA legal, the DEA placed it in Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act in 1985.
So what it boils down to is this: a relatively harmless drug that promotes togetherness and peaceful behaviour is criminalized. In the meantime, alcohol, which makes wretched assholes out of its abusers, encourages violent and reckless behaviour and claims millions of lives worldwide is perfectly legal. Something is definitely amiss. So much that the Canadian government is contemplating suing the tobacco industry for billions of dollars in healthcare costs. Doesn’t that indicate that they know this shit is lethal? Why won’t they place alcohol and tobacco in Schedule 1 then? As the saying goes, money talks and the bullshit tangos all over the gotdamn place. Kudos to Dr. Perry Kendall (and his colleagues) for having the guts to speak out on the demonization of MDMA. He presents an unbiased perspective on its usage and effects; something the establishment doesn’t want to hear, no doubt. I strongly recommend you watch the video of his press conference, where he brilliantly defends his position whilst shredding commonly held misconceptions about MDMA. Let’s hope that one day, good sense will prevail and Ecstasy be given the respect that it deserves.
Copyright © 2012 Frankie Diamond. All rights reserved. Excerpts of less than 200 words may be published to another site, including a link back to the original article. This article may not be reproduced in its entirety and posted to another site without the express permission of the author.