Nautilus

I Am a Heroin User. I Do Not Have a Drug Problem

Carl Hart is a neuroscientist and Ziff Professor of Psychology at Columbia University—he was the first tenured African-American professor of sciences at Columbia. His research focuses on the “behavioral and neuropharmacological effects of psychoactive drugs in humans.” Hart’s new book, Drug Use For Grown-Ups, is a bold and engaging effort to counter what he sees as generations of misinformation and moral grandstanding about drug use. Today’s “sensationalistic media coverage of the opioid crisis continues a long, awful tradition of exploiting ignorance and fear to vilify certain members of our society,” Hart writes. The media is not the only problem. Scientists, he states, “have frequently overinterpreted and distorted” drugs’ effects on the brain.

Hart reports that more than 70 percent of drug users—whether they use alcohol, cocaine, prescription medications, or heroin—do not meet the health criteria for drug addiction. In Drug Use for Grown-Ups, Hart strives to “present a more realistic image of the typical drug user: a responsible professional who happens to use drugs in his pursuit of happiness.” With genial candor, Hart presents himself as a model drug user. “I am now entering my fifth year as a regular heroin user,” he writes. “I do not have a drug-use problem. Never have. Each day, I meet my parental, personal, and professional responsibilities. I pay my taxes, serve as a volunteer in my community on a regular basis, and contribute to the global community as an informed and engaged citizen. I am better for my drug use.”

caught up with Hart to discuss his drug use and his sharp points about science and.

Você está lendo uma amostra, registre-se para ler mais.

Mais de Nautilus

NautilusLeitura de 10 minsPsychology
A Quiet Path Out of the Coronavirus Shadow: Mindfulness helped this ER doctor through a dark time. It can help us through these times.
Eleven years ago, I sat down across from a man named Edward Espe Brown. I had returned home to Texas from a four-month stay at the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center in California, endured a breakup, and was feeling adrift. I told Ed that I was struggling
NautilusLeitura de 14 minsMedical
How to Conquer COVID-19 Amid a Confederacy of Dunces: Science can’t be democratic, says an outspoken virologist.
Robert Burioni is a virologist at the San Raffaele University in Milan, Italy, and a serious scientist. But in 2016, something happened that changed his course. He was on television with two anti-vaxxers—a famous actress and a former DJ—who were taki
NautilusLeitura de 6 minsPsychology
Do We Have Free Will? Maybe It Doesn't Matter
Belief is a special kind of human power. Agustin Fuentes, an anthropologist at the University of Notre Dame, eloquently claims as much in his recent book Why We Believe: Evolution and the Human Way of Being. It’s the “most prominent, promising, and d