Sunday, August 21, 2011

What drug epidemic?

How many Americans use illegal drugs? The numbers are probably much lower than you think.

Only 8 percent of Americans have used any illicit drugs in the past month. If you subtract marijuana from the equation, it drops to 4 percent. And most of that 4 percent is accounted for by the nonmedical use of pain relievers.

So that's the epidemic: About 4 percent of Americans using marijuana, 4 percent using pain relievers when they shouldn't, and 92 percent sitting at home knitting and playing Jenga, without any drugs whatsoever (except alcohol and tobacco, of course.)

What about meth? "Meth epidemic" gives us 1,860,000 Google results, including a Newsweek cover article of that name. But only 0.3 percent of Americans have used methamphetamines in the past month. The number was so low that federal researchers changed the survey and did it again, only to confirm the low result.

Source: Bet You Didn't Know, by Cheryl Russell.

"What happened to our market?" - other Jesse

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