Episode 37: Drugstore Cowboy

Diversion: a cold, technocratic word for when we give, trade or sell our prescribed meds to someone else. A ghost story, whispered among doctors and now, a moral panic, hollered by right wing politicians.

But really, everyone’s shared their meds. I’ve done it and I bet you have too – as an act of mutual aid, solidarity or maybe survival. But doctors have created all kinds of measures to try to stop it. And politicians have spread lies as part of a pretext to stamp out safe supply before it ever really gets started.

In this episode we follow a guy named Pockets, as he finds relief in heroin and eventually gets prescribed Dilaudid and Methadone. Surrounded by death, in the time of fentanyl and benzodope, Pockets starts to share his safe, regulated meds to help save lives. And he’s punished for it.

We also hear from professors Thomas Kerr and Geoff Bardwell who talk about their research on diversion, which provides an alternative, evidence-based, perspective on the highly controversial practice.