On Drugs

On Drugs

Why you should care

Because for better and worse, just say no is over. 

When Nancy Reagan passed away last month, she was not survived by the meme she created in the 1980s— Just Say No.

Exactly when that phrase turned relic, we’re not sure, but we do know that humanity’s relationship with recreational drugs has undergone a huge shift. The legalization movement seeded in 2013 (Colorado, Uruguay) is by now in full flower. An October 2015 Gallup poll showed that nearly 60 percent of Americans support marijuana legalization. Psychedelics are gaining pharmaceutical traction. The war on drugs? Drugs might be winning.

Which is one of the reasons that we at OZY decided to devote an entire issue, meted out over the week, to illicit drugs. Taylor Mayol’s piece on “molly love” considers ecstasy-aided intimacy. Eugene S. Robinson takes us back to the agony of the crack epidemic in 1980s America. Libby Coleman tells us about that time the CIA dosed its own agents with LSD. Global contributors look at Colombia’s bittersweet transition from coca farming to….chocolate, and how aunties in India are pushing weed. Our photo director Alex Washburn suggests the magazine industry is going to pot, and Malik Wade tells us about his days as a drug dealer. Now that’s a daily dose.

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