Target: Chuck Rosenberg, head of the DEA and Shaun Donovan, director of the Office of Management and Budget
Goal: Allow continued use of medicinal plant that has helped sick people for hundreds of years.
The plant kratom is being banned by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), even though it has been used for medicinal purposes for hundreds of years. The herb is known to be most effective in aiding with opioid and alcohol addictions but is also helpful for relief of pain, anxiety, depression, PTSD, and fibromyalgia. This ban could potentially be dangerous to society as it would likely increase the use of opioids, as happened in Alabama when the state imposed a statewide ban. Fifty members of Congress, both Democratic and Republican, have sent a letter to Chuck Rosenberg at the DEA and Shaun Donovan at the Office of Management and Budget, asking them to delay the ban on kratom, which will hopefully buy time to change the DEA’s plan.
The decision to outlaw kratom comes from the department run by a man who once said that cannabis having medicinal properties was a joke. In the case of kratom, he said that it is an opioid, which is only true in the sense that it interacts with the same receptors in the brain. Opioids, such as drugs like heroin, are made from poppies, while kratom comes from the leaves of a tree native to Southeast Asia. These leaves are often chewed or brewed into a tea to drink while some get it in powdered form.
The DEA cites 15 deaths related to kratom since 2014, though all but one of those people who died had other drugs in their system at the time. Opioid abuse kills tens of thousands each year. The National Institutes for Health (NIH), a government funded agency, gave money to universities for studies that led researchers to apply for a patent for the active ingredient in kratom, mitragynine, which they reported was beneficial for aiding in opioid addictions. Banning this drug would stop all research. The DEA cannot in good conscience outlaw a drug that the government knows has medicinal benefits. Sign this petition to demand that kratom not be banned under the Controlled Substances Act.
Dear Mr. Rosenberg and Mr. Donovan,
The recent decision by the DEA to classify kratom as a Schedule 1 drug is causing more harm than good. For hundreds of years, this supplement has been used for pain relief and, in addition to aiding in alcohol and opioid addictions, is also known to be beneficial in cases of PTSD, anxiety, depression, and fibromyalgia. Since the classification announcement, many people have been unable to attain the herb and relieve their symptoms. Placing kratom under the Schedule 1 classification will prevent further research and mean that people are left with no choice but to turn to dangerous and addictive opioids to aid their medical problems. Fifty U.S. members of Congress sent a letter asking that you use your power to delay scheduling this herb, and I am writing to show my support.
Government money funded research that led to a patent on the active ingredient in the kratom plant and its use in cases of opioid addiction. You cannot pretend there is no medicinal value when the NIH has proof. Most of those who have died kratom-related deaths were found to have additional drugs in their systems at the time. This supplement has been used for hundreds of years, and it is our human right to utilize it for medicinal purposes. Please delay scheduling kratom and keep it out of the Schedule 1 classification.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Uomo vitruviano