There is a long, racist history of psychedelic drugs being used to repress — and oppress
In August, 2019, Michael Pollan spoke about the promise of psychedelic therapy to a receptive audience at the American Psychological Association Convention. Pollan was coming off of a very successful year: The New York Times called his book one of the best of 2018, and his lecture marked the culmination of a public discussion that has helped to bring psychedelic therapy to mainstream consciousness.
Then, just a few weeks later, Elijah McLain, a young black man, was killed by police after being involuntarily administered ketamine. A psychedelic substance with powerful dissociative effects, ketamine has been promoted as a template for psychedelic therapy and is also increasingly used as a tranquilizer by police departments that are attempting to avoid the liability of firearms and tasers.