UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who has covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

February 9, 2009

BRITISH DRUG EXPERT SAYS ECSTASY NO MORE DANGEROUS THAN RIDING A HORSE

BBC - Taking the drug ecstasy is no more dangerous than riding a horse, a senior advisor has suggested. Professor David Nutt, chairman of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, outlined his view in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

The council, which advises the government, is expected next week to recommend that ecstasy is downgraded from a class A drug to a class B one. Ministers have outlined their opposition to any such move.

Professor Nutt wrote: "Drug harm can be equal to harms in other parts of life. There is not much difference between horse-riding and ecstasy."

The professor said horse-riding accounted for more than 100 deaths a year, and went on: "This attitude raises the critical question of why society tolerates - indeed encourages - certain forms of potentially harmful behavior but not others such as drug use."

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