Carl Hart, a professor of psychology and neuroscience from Columbia University, has become an online sensation of sorts.
Hart, who chairs the psychology department, has a liking for heroin, which is not limited to a subject of scholarly pursuit but also a substance for personal use.
The 54-year-old father of three has snorted small amounts of heroin for as many as 10 days in a row and enjoys it. This, even though he experiences mild withdrawal symptoms “12 to 16 hours after the last dose,” which he recalls in his new book Drug Use for Grown-ups: Chasing Liberty in the Land of Fear (Penguin Press). However, Hart sees this as a worthwhile trade-off.
In his book, Hart states he enjoys nothing more than a few lines by the fireplace at the end of the day. He adds that the experience leaves him “refreshed” and “prepared to face another day.”
The Columbia University professor who has studied the effects of psychoactive drugs on humans finds his use of heroin to be “as rational as my alcohol use. Like vacation sex and the arts, heroin is one of the tools that I use to maintain my work-life balance.”
As for the reason for coming clean about doing opiates and the like, Hart states that this is to advocate for decriminalising possession of recreational drugs. The book supports his claim as well as it states, “that the demonisation of drug use – not drugs themselves – [has] been a tremendous scourge on America, not least in reinforcing this country’s enduring structural racism.”
In an interview with Insider, he said he hopes that President Biden would work towards federal regulation and licensing of the use of substances that are “described as neighbourhood scourges.” According to him if people are going to indulge, they should at least do it safely.
Hart even claims that it’s not only heroin that keeps him centred as he is also a fan of the effects brought on by MDMA, aka ecstasy and methamphetamine (this drug has caused the most overdose deaths in nearly half the US).
The psychology professor also finds pleasure in snorting a version of bath salts, a synthetic cathinone linked to disturbing behaviour from breaking into homes to barking. Although the professor’s assessment is “unequivocally wonderful,” and goes on to add in his book that the effects are “euphoric, energetic, clearheaded and highly social … niiiiiice.”