Richard Rawson, a UCLA researcher who has studied meth for two decades, tells Paley that emergency-room visits and patient admissions tend to lag five to seven years behind the emergence of the drug, and that observed use by gays and any lab seizures are good markers of a potential wave of use. Or, maybe not.
The easiest way to end a bad article like this is to return to the anecdotal user, whose life was destroyed by drugs. The Post obliges, reintroducing us to Jimmy Garza, who was arrested for meth possession, lost his freedom, lost his job at AOL, lost his two cars, was evicted from his "posh" home, and declared bankruptcy. "His primary mission is to tell his story so that people realize the dangers of meth," Paley writes.
As much as I am prepared to believe that a meth epidemic is gathering speed and will soon rush through the Washington metropolitan region like Hurricane Katrina on a rocket sled, Mr. Garza's drug confessional and the Post's sketchy reporting leave me as ignorant about the drug's local incidence and prevalence as I was before I opened the paper.
Addendum, March 22, 2:30 p.m.: Don't miss Angela Valdez's brilliant critique of the Oregonian's multi-part methamphetamine series in this week's Willamette Week.
A friend recommends that I combine my obsessions with press coverage of methamphetamine and Judith Miller's reporting. What sort of monster that would breed? Send your ideas via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. (E-mail may be quoted unless the writer stipulates otherwise.)
TODAY IN SLATE
Forget Oculus Rift
This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.
The Congressional Republican Digging Through Scientists’ Grant Proposals
Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
Whole Foods Is Desperate for Customers to Feel Warm and Fuzzy Again
I’m 25. I Have $250.03.
My doctors want me to freeze my eggs.
- NSA Is Letting its Chief Technical Officer Work 20 Hours a Week for a Private Company
- After 13 Years of U.S. Occupation, Afghanistan Opium Production Is at an All-Time High
- The Pennsylvania Fugitive Sniper Is Still at Large After 39 Days
- Oscar Pistorius Sentenced to Five Years, May Only Serve Ten Months
Smash and Grab
Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?