Festivals: 'Grave concerns' over drug safety this summer

Watch
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#1
An interesting article that raises some valuable points in terms of the UKs medieval approach to drug laws (ironically they were more tolerant back then).
It is a matter of fact that the UK (and many other countries, alas) have such poor drug policies they actively contribute to countless needless deaths a year. All this perpetrated through a lack of proper scientific study, deliberate ignorance and general bigotry. It does rather make ones gorge rise when you hear government ministers talk of trying to combat drug use (heaven forfend someone want to feel better) and most offensively of all when they talk about their taking a harm mitigation approach despite doing exactly the opposite.

This is a rather nice, if limited, case in point for this. Public drug safety testing is limited in Britain and when it is done its generally ex post facto (done from seized drugs and what plods have turned over as well) theres no legal protection for people who want to get their stuff tested at, say, a festival (at least not to my knowledge). All of this leads to pointless deaths.
Most drug deaths, after all, are not caused by the drug itself but by dangerous adulterants or, ironically enough, people buying the pure stuff and expecting it to be watered down. All of this is but another glaring point as to why we should take the european approach to drug laws. It saves lives, money, livelihoods and reduces usage broadly.

Mini rant about British government policy aside though, i will be interested to see how this plays out in the long term and if the pessimistic predictions prove well founded when the country opens up for the summer.


https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-56429243
0
reply
DiddyDec
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#2
Report 4 weeks ago
#2
I think it is pretty certain there will be an increased rate of deaths from people going overboard with their usage.

The Tories will continue to do nothing about their failing drugs policy because their voter base aren't interested in reform.
1
reply
ThomH97
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#3
Report 4 weeks ago
#3
Interesting point. But there's not much the government can do about it even if it legalised everything in time. People are going to take what they are used to taking (similar with alcohol), and probably a bit more as a celebration.

The government would have to legalise it, and give small doses to everyone who wanted it to find their tolerance before the festivals. All at a time when they're trying to vaccinate everyone twice.
0
reply
DiddyDec
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#4
Report 4 weeks ago
#4
(Original post by ThomH97)
Interesting point. But there's not much the government can do about it even if it legalised everything in time. People are going to take what they are used to taking (similar with alcohol), and probably a bit more as a celebration.

The government would have to legalise it, and give small doses to everyone who wanted it to find their tolerance before the festivals. All at a time when they're trying to vaccinate everyone twice.
They could introduce a service to allow people to test their drugs rather than charities doing it technically illegally.
0
reply
ThomH97
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#5
Report 4 weeks ago
#5
(Original post by DiddyDec)
They could introduce a service to allow people to test their drugs rather than charities doing it technically illegally.
What, at the festivals? If it's government-led they'd have to do it very thoroughly in case anyone dies from a 'safe' batch.

Also, you still have the problem of people overestimating what they can handle.
0
reply
DiddyDec
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#6
Report 4 weeks ago
#6
(Original post by ThomH97)
What, at the festivals? If it's government-led they'd have to do it very thoroughly in case anyone dies from a 'safe' batch.

Also, you still have the problem of people overestimating what they can handle.
Yes, at festivals. They can include the standard disclaimer that all drugs are dangerous which is about as common sense as hot coffee being hot.

That is a problem with pretty much everything, whether it be drugs, food or even exercise.
0
reply
ThomH97
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#7
Report 4 weeks ago
#7
(Original post by DiddyDec)
Yes, at festivals. They can include the standard disclaimer that all drugs are dangerous which is about as common sense as hot coffee being hot.
A charity can get away with that. But not the government. What are they going to do, spend time and money to test stuff, then say "We've tested it and think it's safe. but it's your fault if it's dangerous"? There's no point in the government doing that, and they'll be held accountable (rightly or wrongly) for anyone who dies after taking drugs the government said was 'safe'.

That is a problem with pretty much everything, whether it be drugs, food or even exercise.
Indeed, and I said there's not much the government can do about it, not even if they did as you said and could test everyone's drugs quickly and accurately.
0
reply
DiddyDec
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#8
Report 4 weeks ago
#8
(Original post by ThomH97)
A charity can get away with that. But not the government. What are they going to do, spend time and money to test stuff, then say "We've tested it and think it's safe. but it's your fault if it's dangerous"? There's no point in the government doing that, and they'll be held accountable (rightly or wrongly) for anyone who dies after taking drugs the government said was 'safe'.

Indeed, and I said there's not much the government can do about it, not even if they did as you said and could test everyone's drugs quickly and accurately.
I feel like you didn't read what I wrote and you don't understand the purpose of drug testing in this is context.
0
reply
ThomH97
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#9
Report 4 weeks ago
#9
(Original post by DiddyDec)
I feel like you didn't read what I wrote and you don't understand the purpose of drug testing in this is context.
Then do elaborate on the below. The charities test for content, purity and strength in order to determine risk, but they have no obligation to the public. The government does have that obligation, and a half-arsed attempt with the quality of tests that charities use would not be acceptable.
(Original post by DiddyDec)
They could introduce a service to allow people to test their drugs rather than charities doing it technically illegally.
0
reply
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#10
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#10
(Original post by ThomH97)
Then do elaborate on the below. The charities test for content, purity and strength in order to determine risk, but they have no obligation to the public. The government does have that obligation, and a half-arsed attempt with the quality of tests that charities use would not be acceptable.
If i understand what youre writing, it could simply be addressed with a cover warning that this is an indicative test and is not to be treated as saying 'go nuts' from the feedback.
Equally, depending on which charity and what test theyre running some of them are rather good using GCMS testing and not some simple stick test.

Either way, its hard to argue that allowing more NGOs or the government itself to introduce harm reduction measures is a bad idea. Especially as their current policy of demonising half the population has manifestly failed so very spectacularly.
0
reply
Wōden
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#11
Report 4 weeks ago
#11
(Original post by DiddyDec)
I feel like you didn't read what I wrote and you don't understand the purpose of drug testing in this is context.
Seems to me the easier option would be to just legalise, regulate and ensure the manufacturers conform to proper quality controls and safety standards before they are allowed to be sold (like we do with alcohol), rather than arduously test everbody's individual batches of dubious origin. But obviously that solution is far too sensible for our clown world establishment.

I don't know about you, but I much prefer being able to just buy a bottle of whisky in the supermarket, absolutely safe in the knowledge that it's not going to be half contaminated with methanol or anti-freeze because it's been produced by a legal and well regulated business, and not some yokel with a moonshine still in the woods.
Last edited by Wōden; 4 weeks ago
0
reply
DiddyDec
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#12
Report 4 weeks ago
#12
(Original post by Wōden)
Seems to me the easier option would be to just legalise, regulate and ensure the manufacturers conform to proper quality controls and safety standards before they are allowed to be sold (like we do with alcohol), rather than arduously test everbody's individual batches of dubious origin. But obviously that solution is far too sensible for our clown world establishment.

I don't know about you, but I much prefer being able to just buy a bottle of whisky in the supermarket, absolutely safe in the knowledge that it's not going to be half contaminated with methanol or anti-freeze because it's been produced by a legal and well regulated business, and not some yokel with a moonshine still in the woods.
I would love to be able to buy it like alcohol but I was thinking realistically. As a nation we are a long way from even decriminalisation let alone legalisation and regulation.
0
reply
IanDangerously
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#13
Report 4 weeks ago
#13
There are massive concerns about drug safety every year and yet very few deaths, relatively speaking.

You can’t get to drug taking age in this country without having heard ad nauseum about the potential dangers. The people taking them know the risks involved.
0
reply
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#14
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#14
(Original post by IanDangerously)
There are massive concerns about drug safety every year and yet very few deaths, relatively speaking.

You can’t get to drug taking age in this country without having heard ad nauseum about the potential dangers. The people taking them know the risks involved.
You'd be surprised. At any rate, one could have all the knowledge in the world on drugs and still die from a dodgy batch, which is rather the point here, in that knowledge is useless when it comes to unknowns that are perpetrated by bad policy.
0
reply
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#15
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#15
(Original post by Wōden)
Seems to me the easier option would be to just legalise, regulate and ensure the manufacturers conform to proper quality controls and safety standards before they are allowed to be sold (like we do with alcohol), rather than arduously test everbody's individual batches of dubious origin. But obviously that solution is far too sensible for our clown world establishment.

I don't know about you, but I much prefer being able to just buy a bottle of whisky in the supermarket, absolutely safe in the knowledge that it's not going to be half contaminated with methanol or anti-freeze because it's been produced by a legal and well regulated business, and not some yokel with a moonshine still in the woods.
Alas, as long as the system is predicated on 'harm reduction' (in the sense that they mean harm reduction to stop people taking drugs (lol) ) it can never happen.
As radical an idea as it is it would make much more sense just to wind the clock back to the 1850's where everything was regulated and taxed (well lets say 1890s after chemistry had advanced a bit) alas, far to many jobs depend on ruining/ending peoples lives through the 'war on drugs' will tens of billions spent 'policing' it a year and hundreds of thousands employed in it sensible policy can never be enacted.
0
reply
IanDangerously
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#16
Report 4 weeks ago
#16
(Original post by Napp)
You'd be surprised. At any rate, one could have all the knowledge in the world on drugs and still die from a dodgy batch, which is rather the point here, in that knowledge is useless when it comes to unknowns that are perpetrated by bad policy.
Everybody I’ve ever known who’s taken drugs even as a teenager had heard stories about people dying from a bad batch or having a reaction from first time usage. If you want to use a certain substance it’s not really that off-putting that a handful of people died because some people have died doing just about anything, ever. Everything has a risk.

There’s no real argument for drugs being illegal but they’ll never legalise them so everyone will just do it anyway.
0
reply
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#17
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#17
(Original post by IanDangerously)
Everybody I’ve ever known who’s taken drugs even as a teenager had heard stories about people dying from a bad batch or having a reaction from first time usage. If you want to use a certain substance it’s not really that off-putting that a handful of people died because some people have died doing just about anything, ever. Everything has a risk.

There’s no real argument for drugs being illegal but they’ll never legalise them so everyone will just do it anyway.
Oh that was your point, gotcha, agreed.
True say on the last bit. It's just a pity they need to make a point of ruining peoples lives, be it in terms of criminal records or injury/death simply for petty politicking. Que sera sera though.
0
reply
IanDangerously
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#18
Report 4 weeks ago
#18
(Original post by Napp)
Oh that was your point, gotcha, agreed.
True say on the last bit. It's just a pity they need to make a point of ruining peoples lives, be it in terms of criminal records or injury/death simply for petty politicking. Que sera sera though.

The government don’t care about people’s lives, they need a “war on drugs” to make themselves feel important. We’re as bad as America now in that sense. 😂

George Carlin said something like that about the US government 30 years ago. That basically any time they can’t find a foreign country to pick a fight with they end up declaring a war on something at home just to make it look like they’re doing something!
2
reply
barnet1471
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#19
Report 3 weeks ago
#19
Assuming the festivals take place, a valid concern. Police will also still have other tasks to do and reduced manpower.
0
reply
Napp
Badges: 22
Rep:
?
#20
Report Thread starter 3 weeks ago
#20
(Original post by barnet1471)
Assuming the festivals take place, a valid concern. Police will also still have other tasks to do and reduced manpower.
Ideally they should be doing their job which is to ensure people are safe, prevent violent/harmful crime and so on. Harassing people wanting to get a buzz being a decided waste of time and effort by most metrics.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

What factors affect your mental health the most right now?

Anxiousness about lockdown easing (145)
4.88%
Uncertainty around my education (438)
14.73%
Uncertainty around my future career prospects (334)
11.23%
Lack of purpose or motivation (414)
13.93%
Lack of support system (eg. teachers, counsellors, delays in care) (139)
4.68%
Impact of lockdown on physical health (180)
6.05%
Loneliness (255)
8.58%
Financial worries (109)
3.67%
Concern about myself or my loves ones getting/having been ill (121)
4.07%
Exposure to negative news/social media (135)
4.54%
Lack of real life entertainment (161)
5.42%
Lack of confidence in making big life decisions (261)
8.78%
Worry about missed opportunities during the pandemic (281)
9.45%

Watched Threads

View All