Just test the damned pills


There’s a debate raging in Australia about whether music festivals should do pill testing. I couldn’t understand the logic for years; why should people demand a venue test their illegal substances? In what other context would that be logical? Wouldn’t it also be the very definition of probable cause for law enforcement?

I still think that to an extent. If your concern is the drugs you’re taking have unknown ingredients, you’re a f… fool for taking them. Those of us who’ve lost loved ones to disease or accidents are floored at this preventable and selfish waste of human life.

But the reality is people will take these drugs regardless of legality; it’s why the drug wars have been such a catastrophic failure. The real answer is drug legalisation and the availability of medical-grade alternatives.

In the meantime, and this is something that had to be pounded into my stubborn head for at least a few months, pill testing is a scientifically verified form of harm minimisation. They can’t test for every noxious additive, but it’s literally better than nothing.

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