Unclear as Crystal

Drug Cultures in America


American Voices

Mass Incarceration in the United States

America has 5% of the world's population, 25% of the world's inmates. They are fathers, brothers, sons, mothers, sisters, wives. They are people, not statistics. They are members of our community. So much for the land of the free.  How... Continue Reading →


Weed is Weed isn’t Weed: Comercialization of a Backyard Craft

From April 17 - 22nd, the American Culture Program packed our bags and flew from small-city Virginia to Denver Colorado. There we talked to marijuana genome researchers, hemp seed developers, politicians and regulatory agencies, not to mention some marijuana entrepreneurs and got... Continue Reading →

Invisible – Crack/Cocaine and Methamphetamines

Throughout this blog, the question of why we choose to use drugs has continued to come up. We use drugs in social situations, to attain a religious or transcendent experience, as symbols of status, to help us reach fitness goals or alleviate stress... Continue Reading →

Heroin, Cocaine, and the “choice” to use

Why do people use drugs? Why do people continue to use drugs?  For such a simple question, the answer is far from straightforward, even in the context of a single drug. Take heroin as a case study. The use and... Continue Reading →

Prescribing Perfect and the Drive to Take Drugs

"The ubiquity of drug use is so striking that it must represent a basic human appetite" - Andrew Weil, The Natural Mind: A New Way of Looking at Drugs and Higher Consciousness From cough syrup to cocaine and coffee to oxycontin,... Continue Reading →

Drugs and Leisure: Play hard, work harder

Growing up, both in a small college mountain town and later in the Denver suburbs, my parents, mentors, and peers advocated a life of work hard-play hard (so long as the play was responsible). This approach to life hints at... Continue Reading →

Working within the system – Alcohol & Tourism

Loose Show Brewery is a small, family-owned brewery based in Amhurst, Virginia. The brewery’s brand can be summed up as a clean, community oriented brewery where families can gather to sip on creative and quality craft brews (including a homemade... Continue Reading →

Talk about it, not around it: Addiction

In a world of political correctness, where the term “addiction” has been replaced with “Substance Use Disorder”, Mike Davidson program manager from Roads to Recovery in Lynchburg, spoke with a refreshing frankness about drug abuse and addiction. Roads to Recovery... Continue Reading →

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