What’s Really Going on in Those Police Fentanyl Exposure Videos?

It’s nearly impossible for an overdose to be caused by brief contact with the drug. It is possible these videos will worsen the danger for those truly at risk.

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Hasnain says:

“These viral “exposure” videos have a way of inverting reality. The people with whom the police interact every day, the civilians and communities they are sworn to protect, are often people whose main crime is that they are struggling with addiction — which is to say that they, not the officers prodding at the contents of their pockets, are the ones in the most danger. There’s concern that these videos will only worsen that danger, not just by making people so terrified of invisible fentanyl traces that they hesitate to aid drug users experiencing overdoses, but also by driving the use of criminal charges to punish people for exposing police officers or emergency responders to drugs.

The story from Kansas City reported that, before the officer collapsed, he was on his way to deliver food to families in need at a local church. Suddenly, he and his fellow officers were dispatched to a burglary, where they found a few pills on the suspect — someone, perhaps, who turned to theft to sustain a drug addiction. This is a story that makes the police sound brave and sympathetic, but its central question remains obscured: What are they really so afraid of?”

Posted on 2022-07-14T06:27:44+0000