27 September 2016
Dear Representative Matsui,
I use kratom for inoperable back pain and have been successfully using it to reduce need for synthetic opiates like hydrocodone. I was hoping to quit Norco completely, but my problem is pain, not addiction. Kratom seemed to be a safe, reasonable alternative–finally! So this imperious pronouncement by DEA represents a real setback.
I thought the authorities wanted people to reduce their use of narcotics. It’s a laudable goal, but this prohibition of kratom would have an effect counter to the one they intend. Certain states that have banned kratom, for example, already have shown an uptick use of heroin and other opioids. Please consider!
This move is short-sighted, unethical, certainly undemocratic, and just plain mean, frankly. I hope this is a trial balloon by DEA, but we need to pop it. Haven’t we learned anything from blanket prohibitions? Kratom has a history thousands of years old. It does NOT get you “high” as usually understood and is not very addictive as far as I can tell. It is in no way of the class of drugs typified by “bath salts.” At least permit study of this wonderful plant.
Please, let’s pursue a rational course and allow room for study and ‘sober’ reflection before creating a new class of instant criminals.
Teacher and Reporter