So TR provided me with this article from the New York Times. He described it as "alarmist" and I can't help but agree. Melena Ryzik quotes a source, saying that cocaine is "definitely prevalent in clubs, bars, parties — everywhere, basically."
I'd like to point out that "clubs, bars, parties" are not "everywhere." Cocaine may be prevalent in the party scene, or, at the least, obvious in the party scene, but that doesn't mean it's "everywhere." Yeah, "everyone" knows that some bankers and other wall street types use cocaine, speed, or other drugs just to stay awake to do their jobs. But that doesn't mean that it is "everywhere."
And then the silliest comment, that "the visibility of cultural markers — and the absence of cautionary tales — leads to the assumption that coke is not as harmful, say, as heroin ." Really? I think that it is unlikely that anyone chose to do cocaine over heroin because it seemed less harmful. Maybe because cocaine doesn't have to be mainlined, or smoked, instead it can be genteelly snorted. Or maybe because cocaine has a reputation as a "designer drug."
So I've recently had a great deal more experience with addiction and addictive personalities than ever before. I've read Dry, Appetites: Why Women Want, and I have a friend who has an addictive personality. It has become clear to me that drugs are drugs. And that when it comes to drugs, and other addictive substances, it isn't always as clear cut as a choice. To say that people aren't aware that cocaine is dangerous, and that is why they choose it just seems patronizing. Coke isn't crack. The users are generally educated, affluent, and successful. They aren't stupid, and drug use is much more complicated then this article paints it. Thanks NYTimes for perpetuating stereotypes and misinformation.