Drug warriors have long deployed disinformation to justify panics and crackdowns. Kratom, an unregulated plant-based product used by many to manage opioid consumption and withdrawals, has not been spared.
On May 21, former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb spread a baseless claim on social media with a call to criminalize kratom consumers and obstruct access for people with opioid use disorder (OUD).
“I’m convinced [kratom is] fueling the opioid addiction crisis,” Gottlieb posted on Twitter, followed by a call for the Biden Administration to finish the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) 2016 scheduling effort that failed in the face of consumer advocacy and public opposition.
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