Updated: Aug 29
Happy Thanksgiving, Points readers!
It’s been quite the year. Since relaunching Points in April, we’ve seen enormous changes in drug policy and the social and legal discussions surrounding drug and alcohol use. We’ve been able to contextualize many of these changes historically, as well as discovering new and unique ways to integrate alcohol and drug use into larger historical discussions.
We asked our stable of contributing editors what they were most thankful for this year, and here are some of their responses.
– From Amy Long: “I’m thankful that the FDA stood up to media hysterics and resistant lawmakers by refusing to back down from its approval of pure-hydrocodone pain medications Zohydro and Hysingla. The issue remains complicated, but pain patients will undoubtedly benefit from additional treatment options.”
– From Michael Durfee: “I’m thankful I have white skin. My privilege allows that I will not be routinely perceived as potentially threatening or criminal. My privilege assured that my youthful misadventures did not lead to punitive pathways or limit my future opportunities. My pigment has meant that I do not fit the ‘drug courier profile’ and will not be pulled over or pushed against a wall and frisked by police. I am hopeful, but frightened by numerous recent events and all too much history that my son will not be able to enjoy such luxuries. When he is born, I will see a young boy, the fruit of a white father from Buffalo and a black mother from Ghana. Law enforcement may see something entirely different.”
– From Nicholas Johnson: “I’d say that I’m thankful that this year I got the opportunity to study in Berlin and explore the international side of the history of intoxication. I’m also thankful that I’ve gotten the opportunity to blog for Points about some lesser-known aspects of WWI.”
– From Trysh Travis: “I’m grateful that, after two years on ice, when I finally got the wherewithal to write something again, I had a venue and an audience waiting for me at Points.”
– From Claire Clark: “I was also glad to see Michael Botticelli, the acting director of ONDCP (aka ‘drug czar’), who is in abstinence-based recovery himself, open the tenth National Harm Reduction Conference a few weeks ago (http://harmreduction.org/blog/drug-czar/). Just one of many recent signs of the growing public awareness that there are many different approaches to drug-related health problems, and routes to recovery.”
– From Kyle Bridge: “It sounds a bit clichéd but I’m thankful for time with my family over the holiday season. Particularly my mother, whose long career in drug offender probation probably influenced my interests more than I realize, and whose knowledge, resources, and contacts continue to aid my work.”
– From me, Emily Dufton: “I’m grateful to live in Washington, D.C., a city that is recognizing the racial effects of prosecuting marijuana possession crimes. As a historian primarily of marijuana’s social and legal policy, I look forward to being able to witness firsthand our country’s next experiment with decriminalization and legalization. I am also grateful that, at this moment at least, it seems as though we are learning from our mistakes of the past, and are moving forward with legalization in a sustainable, safe and sane manner.”
As my fellow managing editor Claire Clark put it, “It’s nice to look at the bright side of drug policy for a change!”
Happy Thanksgiving Points readers! We are grateful for you!