News from Bad Axe… a Michigan town apparently named after a ‘59 Gibson Les Paul… from the Huron Daily Tribune…
A 32 year old man was busted for possession with intent to sell 10 hits of LSD. A huge drug bust for Bad Axe.
Police also discovered in the man’s possession a pound of “suspected Kratom”. Kratom is legal in Michigan. So if the police suspected it was Kratom, they had no premise whatsoever to seize the substance. Since the man was found with a forbidden substance (LSD) they certainly did, however, have a reasonable premise to test it for other illegal drugs.
However, the suspected Kratom, which Hanson said may have opioid properties, is also a concern. He said the Michigan State Police Bridgeport Crime Lab has already tested and confirmed the LSD, and it will also be testing the other substance found.
Why police labs even have kratom test kits is mysterious to me. Do they have test kits for tea, coffee, and ibuprofen as well?
Furthermore, Sheriff Kelly J. Hanson stated:
“Finding more about that suspected Kratom — we need to not forget about that. We are looking into it. From what we know right now, that has the potential of being something similar to what bath salts were. There’s a lot of unknowns that we’re concerned about. Is it going to be something like bath salts, or are we looking at it too deeply?”
Bath salts are any number of substances, but most commonly mephedrone – a methamphetamine-like drug that produces effects nothing at all like kratom.
This is why policy makers and those who enforce that policy shouldn’t be involved with drugs and drug abuse at all. Treating drug use as a criminal rather than medical issue has not ever worked to reduce it. This is one of the many instances we hear in the news of police treating legal substances as forbidden ones. (In Latvia, police recently did some rogue landscaping in the garden of an old woman who was growing non-psychoactive hemp plants.) But at least Sheriff Hanson is asking questions, seemingly with an open mind.
Reddit user BuffWebster72 made an excellent point on this very topic on October 21:
if it was dangerous, there would be overdoses, and they would be frequent because MILLIONS of Americans use this plant to improve their quality of life… If it was dangerous, it would be in a large number of police reports. But it’s not. If it was dangerous, police officers would have heard of it. But they haven’t.
A report from MLive.com states:
An estimated 2,662 Michigan residents died from drug overdoses in 2017.. That’s a 82 percent increase over five years.
Can you guess the main culprit? (Hint: it isn’t kratom)
Opioids including heroin account for 73 percent of Michigan’s drug overdose deaths in 2016.
Law Enforcement Officers like Sheriff Hanson need to be politely educated on kratom. Banning kratom and making it a Schedule I drug turns millions of Americans into criminals who otherwise would not be, just like the millions of Americans who use marijuana but otherwise break no laws.
This is how one former DEA agent put it, in an article he wrote for Kratom United:
I served our country working as a DEA agent, and I know the drugs that are killing Americans. Kratom is not one of them. I was an insider. I know what wars we should be fighting and Kratom is not an herb we should be banning. It’s an herb we should be embracing.