Dear Readers:It used to be pretty simple.Heroin was heroin. Cocaine was cocaine.
Now, federal and local cops have to use the Physician’s Desk Reference — PDR for short — to identify the pills they seize in drug arrests. Or collect at the scene of fatal drug overdoses.
Are the blue pills oxycodone or OxyContin? Is this Valium or hydrocodone? It’s often up to police to identify the pills because the people involved couldn’t tell an aspirin from suppository.
We hear stories of young people raiding the family medicine cabinet, going to parties where they throw the pills into a bowl — antidepressants, sedatives, decongestants, painkillers, muscle relaxers and anything else they found in the medicine cabinet or got from a friend. They play games and take pills from the bowl like candy rewards.
You can dismiss the stories as urban legend, thinking that the behavior is too bizarre to be true.
Then a kid dies at one of these parties and it’s no longer urban legend. It’s the new reality of the drug world.