For all of those who wonder how so many terribly toxic drugs make it onto the streets so easily, some answers have been found. While gangs, thugs, and the every day “gangsta‘” are certainly on everyone’s radar, it is surprising that all eyes should be on the Orient. It is from the far East that many of the most deadly drugs being ingested today are to be found, long before they are mixed into forboding cocktails here.
Cleveland (dot com) has just published an article showing that synthetic drugs like fentanyl “can be easily ordered online and shipped through the mail to United States addresses from China.” This was discovered with great horror by a congressional investigation, though addicts and users have long known of this method for obtaining drugs. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Tom Carper (D-DE) says that the U.S. Postal Service and the State Department are to blame for the existence of this problem.
That is because both entities have shied away from moves that would “require electronic shipping information with names and addresses of senders and receivers of international parcels.”
The two government agencies have cited “logistical and foreign relations reasons” as their purpose behind not wanting to accept such changes. While hard drugs are a problem, having Uncle Sam pilfering through everyone’s mail is hardly the solution that many seek.
Those investigating “posed as buyers” and found six sellers “very responsive.” Fentanyl and other caustic concoctions were available at the click of a mouse. When those posing pretended to be hesitant, “upselling” was attempted, as was “flash sales” offering better rates.
Even deadly carfentanil, 100 times more potent than fentanyl, was up for grabs! The sellers preferred Bitcoin since it is much harder to trace, though payments via “Western Union, MoneyGram, PayPal, credit cards, and prepaid gift cards” were also accepted.
Using the powers of Congress, while those posing as buyers did not make a purchase, they were able to find out that “individuals in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida made the highest number of purchases.”
Most of the time, the drugs came from China, “though some were sent first to an intermediary in Europe before being re-shipped to the United States.” One 49-year-old Ohio user “sent about $2,500 to an online seller over the course of 10 months.” Fifteen packages are known to have arrived at his home.
The problem is that many officials, law enforcement experts, and others feel that China is purposefully allowing this not just for profit (though that is part of it), but to harm the strength of our nation in general.
The War on Drugs has failed us, but that does not mean that we need China creating more addicts on purpose.
Still, if the answer to the problem is to have everyone’s mail gone over with a fine tooth comb, we may have more to worry about than pill poppers in the long run.