#13 – Dear Psychedelic Researchers

April 14, 2020


The coronavirus pandemic offers us a disturbing view into the broken nature of our political, economic, and healthcare systems—systems which have failed the vast majority of us.

But it also offers us a hopeful view into some of the very best of humanity and those who are putting their lives on the line: healthcare workers healing and comforting the sick, food workers and truck drivers providing communities with basic necessities, and grade school teachers distributing food to hungry children and their families.

As we collectively practice social isolation, it highlights the social alienation of late capitalism and an exploding mental health epidemic that psychedelics alone cannot solve.

On the one hand, psychedelics hold promise for personal healing and transformative individual change, and when psychedelics are eventually accepted by mainstream medicine, they will likely impact mental health outcomes for the better. But the broken systems highlighted by the coronavirus pandemic offer insight into why mental health has reached epidemic proportions in the first place. Psychedelics may very well be our best pharmaceutical option to manage the mental health symptoms of our social relations, but a cure will not be possible without systemic socioeconomic change. In the United States, medicare for all and universal basic income would be a start.

As we navigate this challenging social trip in its many forms, we have a real opportunity to examine the systemic nature of our predicament and participate in the ongoing recreation of our social relations. Now is the time for us to build foundations rooted in solidarity and mutual aid, to come together with others in order to address our material conditions, both in this moment and as we move into the future.

Because there is no going back.

Co-hosts: Brian Normand, Neşe Devenot, David Nickles, Brian Pace. Editor: Matt Payne.

Plus Three goes deep into the world of drugs, from local decriminalization and emerging psychedelic corporations, to leftist politics and mass incarceration. Each week we attempt to make sense of the complex connections between drugs, science, capitalism, policy, and culture.

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