Drug Habit

In putting this pamphlet before the publk I wish to make my statcoKnis as plain and emphatic as possible. My readers will understand my motive for this when they J Cam that for twenty years I was a victim oi this accursed habit and know thai nothing bot ~ common sense talk will appeal to you. In the first piace

Do Not Try To Conceal The Fact from your family or friends that you are a slave toihe drug, foe yon can not do it. You may conceal your bottle or the needle and administer it in the secret hours of the night But Its Effects Will Tell and only antagonizes yov with them.

Take Them Into Your Confidence and $ccuro their aid, for your family as well as every other well-Uiinkjiig person know thai

You Nor Any Other Ever Contracted The Drug Habit Of Their.Own Free Will.

In iync casés oui of ten it was

Brought On By The Family Physician who in case of a accident or long siege oi sickness

Administered It To Releive Pain

"Cure0 consisted of subsuming a inorphine mixture for the simple drug

"Junk is tlie ideal product ... tlie ultimate merchandise. No sales talk necessary. The client will crawl through a sewer and beg to buy The junk merchant does not sell his product to the consumer, he sells tlie consumer to his product."

William S. Burrouglis

Evergreen Review, [an.z'Feb. I960

"One always speaks or' tlie slavery of opium. Tlie regularity it imposes on tlie passing hours is not only a discipline, it is also a liberation. Liberal kin from visits and from people sitting round in circles."

Jean Codeau Opium, 1930

Opiate withdrawal sets in a few hours- after the effects of the last dose have worn.. off, readies its peak of intensity during the second day and then declines. At its worst, it is nowhere near as painful an event as it is generally pictured to be. Spectacular man-withrthe-golden-arm horror shows are the creation of novelists and script writers, or of addicts wanting a pat on (lie back for being so brave. They bear little resemblance to what actually, happens, which is an event more closely resembling a moderate case of flu than anything else. And withdrawal from opiates is not a serious event... Unlike withdrawal from alcohol or tlie barbiturates, which can be fatal even when closely supervised by competent doctors, withdrawal from tlie opiates is never fatal.. It is not tlie fear of tlie pains of withdrawal that keeps addicts from giving up opiates, but tlie craving for a stale of consciousness they believe can only be had with the opiale of their choice.

OPIUM Tlie sole source of opium-and hence of morphine, codeine, heroin and hydromorphone-is tlie head of tlie opium poppy, Papavcr somniferum. It is native to the Middle East and now is grown, among oilier places, in India, China, Russia, Southeast Asia and Mexico. Its cultivation is illegal in the United Stales, but during the nineteenth century it was grown and harvested in California, Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, Vermont, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

The method of collecting opium from the plant has remained the same for at least the past 2,500 years. A few days after the petals fall, the greenish seed pods are delicately incised in several places. The milky juice exuded from the shallow culs is left lo dry on the surface of the pods until the next day, when in the form of a brown, gummy substance-crude opium-it is scraped off and collected. Tlie process is repeated until the pod gives no more juice, which usually happens after llie second or third milking,

The effects of opium have been known for an even longer lime. To the Sumerians of the Third Millenium B.C., who occupied llie area comprising the lower half of preseiu-day Iraq, the opium poppy was known as llie joy-plant. . Tlie Babylonians were familiar with it, as were the Hebrews and Greeks. Homer's nepenifies, the drug Helen gave to Telemaclius and his comrades to make them forget their grief, was probably opium: "Presently she cast a drug into the wine, a drug to lull, all pain and anger, and bring fovgetfiiliiess of every sorrow " The Greeks of Homer's time attributed the discoveiy of opium to the Egyptians. They in turn., had learned about i(g medical and pleasure.1 properties from the peoples livii^g in the lands now occupied by Turkey, where the opium poppy was first cultivated. Alexander the Great (fourth century' B.C.) carried a stash lo India but apparently. kept it for himself and his troops. (At any rate, what evidence there is indicates that opium was unknown in India as late as the seventh century' A.D.) Tlie first extensive account of its pharmacology that survives is in the third century B.C. writings of the Greek philosopher and botanist Theophraslus. And a contemporary of his, the physician Erasi stratus, recommended complete avoidance of the drug because of its addictive nature:

Dreaming away the hours' in sweet contemplation after a couple of pipes of opium has been so long and strongly identified with the Chinese that it is popularly believed thai they invented opium smoking. They didn't.., Inhaling the vapws of healed opium was a common practice among the

2. Nusliturs, or poppy knives

Papavei somnifeium -the opium poppy

2. Nusliturs, or poppy knives

Papavei somnifeium -the opium poppy

"Thou hast the keys of Paradise, 0 just, subtle and mighty opium."

Thomas De Quincey ancient Greeks and the inhabitants of the Near and Middle East and the Chinese had not even seen opium, let alone smoked it, until Arab traders brought it to them in the seventh c-ntury a d It isn't likely that the pleasure potential of opium went completely unnoticed by the Chinese, but there is little mention of such use in Chinese literature until the seventeenth century. Up until then, they appear to have used opium primarily as a cure for dysentery. But in the earJy years of that century iheDutch colonizers of Formosa began using a eombination of tobacco and opiu- to ward off malaria. The disease was endemic to the island, so the Dutch smoked a lot of the mixture. The practice spread to Fukien on the neighboring mainland, and by the end of the century large numbers of Chinese had discarded the tobacco and were smoking opium without the excuse of dysentery or malaria.

To be precise, the Chinese were not actually smoking opium, at least not in the sense that one smokes marijuana or tobacco. No one does, Rather the opium is heated, not burned, and the vapors rising from it inhaled. The usual practice is to take a small pellet of opium, heat it over a flame and

Poppy goddess from Crete, cq. 14Q0 b.c

"Picasso used to say tome: 'The smell of opium is the least stupid smell ill the would.

jean Cocteiiu Opium. 1930

then place it in a pipe and inhale the "smoke."

Since crude opium doesn't vaporize very efficiently, a specially prepared opium is always used. This, called prepared or sntoking opium, is a boiled-down aqueous solution of crude opium. The technique for making it is simple, and the only equipment needed is a couple of cooking, pots and some filtering material. . The crude opium, also known ¿is raw or gum opium, is boiled in a small amount of water until it goes into solution. The solution is then filtered into a second pot». The residue, called "dog," is made up of various impurities-parts of stalk, leaves, petals and so on. This is boiled and filtered several more times to extract any opium it may contain. The filtered material from the original operation and the filtered "doc," are then combined and cooked slowly over a low fire to boil off all the remaining water. The thick, sticky paste which results is ready for smoking. In some parts of China, marijuana was added and boiled down with the crude opium.

The pleasure use of opium spread rapidly among the Chinese-and with it addiction. China grew ik>

opium of its own at the time* but foreign dealers more than made up for this lack. In 1729, 13 ions of Indian opium were shipped in by I lie Portuguese. By 1790 the English East India Company, which had taken over the trade from the Portuguese, were bringing in 300 tons a year. Some 40 years later the yearly tonnage had risen to 1,000, and in the next ten years it almost trebled-to 2,600 ions. And by 1906, while the amount of imported opium was no more than 3,500 tons, the Chinese were producing some 10,000 tons a year themselves.

During a)I this period the use of prepared opium was illegal in China. Edicts prohibiting the sale and use of prepared opium were issued as eariy as 1729, and lhe penalties slated in the initial decree indicate that lhe goveiTiment intended to eliminate the opium habit. . Keepers of opium shops were to be "punished in the same way as propagators of depraved doctrines"-lhey were 10 be strangled. As ihey usually are, however, the prohibitions weie ineffective. The local officials charged with enforcing ihem weie making loo much money in lhe opium business to pul an end to it. Attempts at enforcement made by Chinese government later on in the nineteenth century led to the Opium Wars of 1839 and 1858 with England and other foreign powers engaged in the drug trade. The Chinese lost both. Just as I he black and brown ghettoes of America are colonized by the heroin dealers, so too was China by the English, American, Dutch, French and Portuguese opium merchants. The first opium war was instigated by an action that has since become very popular with law enforcement personnel-the confiscation and destruction of the dealer's slash. The Chinese laided the English settlement ai Canton, picked up 1,250 tons of opium and destroyed iu But unlike their current descendenls, I he British dealers enjoyed the full, backing of I heir government, . England viewed the Chinese move as an act of lese majesty and weni to war. What, permit,, the heathen (and militarily weak) Chinese to interrupt profitable trade? Never!

In Europe I he use of opium apparently* didn't start in earnest until Philipus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim, otherwise known as Paracelsus, introduced it into the practice of medicine sometime around 1525, in the form of a hydroalcobolic . tincture containing ten-percent opium, which he called laudanum. It became immensely popular as a "painkiller" and widely used as a tranquilizer and sedative. And it was soon established as the best children's pacifier to be had-the standard treatment for teething or colicky babies was a small dose of laudanum. All in all, there was no more popular drug in the

CHAMPACNE IN THE VEINS "Lei us profit from insomnia to attempt the impossible: to describe the craving.

"Byron said: 'Love cannot withstand seasickness.' Like love, like seasickness, lhe craving penetrates everywhere, Resistance is useless. Al first a malaise, lhen things become worse. Imagine a silence equivalent 10 the crying of thousands of children whose mothers do not return_ to ive them the breast.„ The lover's anxiety transposed into nervous awareness. An absence which dominates, a negative despotism.

"The phenomena become clearer. Flashes like moire before the eyes, champagne in the veins, frozen siphons, cramps, sweating at the root of the hair, dryness in the mouth, sniffling, tears. Do not persist.. Your courage is to no purpose. If you delay too long, you will no longer be able lo take your equipment and roll your pipe. Smoke, Your body was waiting only for a sign. One pipe is enough."

Jean Cacteau Opium. 1930

docioi's medicine bag. Coughs, diarrhea, menstrual cramps, toothaches, minor aches, major pains-all were treated with the new panacea.

Throughout the nineteenth century- in America, as in Europe, there were no legal restrictions on the sale and use of opium and its derivatives. Anyone could buy it over the counter at the local grocery, at ihe neighbcniiood drugstore or have it delivered by mail from a distant supplier. It could also be had from the family doctor and was available in hundreds of opiate-based patent medicines. Brands such as Mrs. Winslow's Soothing Syrup for Children, Mclvdunn's Elixir, Dr. Avei's Cherry Pectoral and Dover's Powder were household names. For anyone who could read, it was impossible to remain ignorant of their ready availability. Every newspaper and magazine of the period was filled with advertisements for "pain killers," "cough relievers," "the woman's friend," "consumption cures" and any other sobriquet the copywriters could devise. And by the third quarter of the century- there was hardly a vacant wall, fence, pole or mountainside which didn't carry the paten! medicine message.

Citizens quickly discoveied thai these patent medicines did mere than relieve medical symptoms, and pretty soon sizeable numbers were taking them simply because they liked the way they felt, afier a dose. Such regular use eventually led to dependence, but while addiction must have been fairly common, it was not consideied a social problem. The opiates were legal and cheap-you could slay high on morphine in the 1880s for less than 5 cents a day-and addicts weren't forced to mug their neighbors to raise the price of a fix.

Continue reading here: Or aHy Drug Habit

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