Heroin from A to Z - Ann Marlow

April 13, 2014

Ann Marlow had a successful career on Wall Street – and simultaneously, a heroin habit.  She never resorted to selling drugs or her body.  She never hit rock bottom.  After ten years, she decided to quit– and never went back.  The antithesis of the junkie stereotype.



This woman laughed when she said that, as a heroin junkie, people expected her to have a pimp. How she could find humor in other addicts' misery just because she is affluent and didn't "hit rock bottom" is beyond me. I'm not sure what was the point of the story (that she "escaped" heroin, I guess?) but I was sorry to have listened because she had no humanity to impart.

I was going to make a different comment, but instead decided to respond to this comment.

You ask what the point was. I don't know what the intended point of the piece might have been, but one important thing to take away from her story is that, if one doesn't suffer from the effects of prohibition, one lives a perfectly normal, mundane life. In other words, the point is that the addict's misery is a direct effect of prohibition, and not of the drug itself. This is not new knowledge. Opiates are among the most studied of drugs because they been around so long. Opiates, like heroin, do not damage the organs of the body. This is important to understand if you care about the misery that prohibition does cause, not just for addicts, but for everybody involved. Or, if nothing else, the money it costs us all.
But you never hear about these people because it's not sensational. "Good news doesn't sell papers," as they say. Nor does it impart the desired 'moral' that 'hitting rock bottom' does. Isn't that the "humanity" you wanted - the heart-wrenching story of degradation, followed by redemption?
She laughed at the naiveté of another interviewer, who, like most people, has gotten everything she thinks she knows about drugs from the media, who get their information from groups with a vested interest in the drug war. She was expecting the usual dog and pony show of degradation. People are indoctrinated with this nonsense from childhood, which is perhaps why they never question these assumptions.

Thanks for doing this story, TTBOOK. It's a rare program that would do it at all, let alone in a thoughtful manner. In fact, perhaps it would be timely to delve into the topic more deeply? The foundation of prohibition is showing some cracks, lately. Perhaps you could talk to Jacob Sullum? He wrote a very interesting, and well-researched book on the topic.