Part 3: Kratom-fighting smarter, not harder

How does the reliability of the advocates (users and sellers) impact the general public’s view and lawmakers’ opinions on kratom? How are current sales platforms and current retailers of kratom hurting the effort to keep kratom legal?
Dear kratom advocates, users, and sellers,

I am an advocate for kratom for many reasons, so let me begin by saying that I believe that mitragyna speciosa has a lot of potential to help people in our world for various reasons; I believe my reasoning to be accurate and based upon logic, but I have some misgivings as well.

There was a time when I would have said that kratom was a harmless, natural, non-addictive substance that acted as a painkiller. I may be right that it is natural, I may be right that it is not addictive, and I know that it works for some people as a painkiller, but I do not know that it is harmless based on science.

I want to know the truth about kratom. Because I believe in its positive potential, I’m willing to keep pursuing the truth. I am not a scientist, I am not a doctor, and I do not have all the answers, but I’d like to keep kratom legal especially because I know it has many beneficial properties and because a ban on kratom would limit our ability to do research and find out more about it.

So, this address goes to other fellow users and to those who sell kratom. It is a caution as well as some practical advice on how to keep kratom legal and find out the truth. I want to fight smarter to keep kratom around, not just harder. If we want kratom to continue to be available, we need our campaign to address some of the deeper issues that are rooted in the kratom ban.

I would like to pose a few questions and answer them with positive and progressive ways of fighting smarter to keep kratom legal. Each of the questions will be answered in a different post, so stay tuned for the rest.

1)How does trust play into the general public’s opinion on kratom?

2)How does language impact the campaign to keep kratom legal?

3)How does the reliability of the advocates (users and sellers) impact the general public’s view and lawmakers’ opinions on kratom? How are current sales platforms and current retailers of kratom hurting the effort to keep kratom legal?

 

I hope to give some practical advice following my opinion on each of the above questions.

 

Here we go: Question 3

3)How does the reliability of the advocates (users and sellers) impact the general public’s view and lawmakers’ opinions on kratom? How are current sales platforms and current retailers of kratom hurting the effort to keep kratom legal?

Reliability in a source is of paramount importance. Reliability is a term used to decide whether a source is credible or not, ie, whether we can trust that what he/she is saying is true.  There are many factors in our situation that can help in determining whether or not a source is reliable. Speech (we’ve spoken of this) and appearance, in general, professionalism, is key. You have to know your stuff and present it in a way that is professional. Do quality research, talk to doctors or anyone else you know that might have more credibility than you! For goodness sake, sound intelligent. In the kratom community, we don’t want to have stereotypes or stigmas attached to the use of kratom.

In addition to appearance and speech, kratom’s place on the market is either online or in the worst place possible: smoke shops. I have nothing against head shops or people who go there to buy whatever they buy, but kratom’s success in our culture will be related to where it is sold and who will see it and trust it. If it is sold next to marijuana and tobacco, it will be assimilated into that category of product. Generally speaking, the average mom or businessman doesn’t head into a smoke shop because honestly, these shops are a little shady. Even if you do smoke, you know that there are chemicals in the cigarette that are harmful to humans. When you begin to associate tobacco, nicotine, or other paraphernalia, to kratom, it will associate kratom to the types of problems and stereotypes linked with other unhealthy or questionable things, and we don’t want that either. Let’s give kratom a fair chance at being a reputable and healthy option for people.

Unfortunately, this will be a long and arduous uphill battle if we keep things the way they are. I believe some people who sell kratom are actually hurting the market and the possibility to make kratom a real option for people who have various struggles. In addition to the issues of language and appearance and store placement discussed above, I believe that the way people are selling kratom is potentially unethical and harmful to kratom’s future.

The first problem is that some kratom retailers’ goals are to make quick money. The best way to make money quickly is drive all competition away by selling product at a cheaper rate than everyone else. The short term benefit of driving down the cost of kratom to appeal to the average consumer is actually hurting the possibility of keeping the value of kratom higher in the future. So now, the consumer’s expectation of the value on kratom is lower, and even when the quality of the product is lower, they will choose the lower priced item (ex. Think about clothing). Lower sale price, lower product/market value. One problem with this is that one of the reasons they are able to drop the price so much is because some retailers are cutting product.

In order to make more money, some sellers are cutting their product which means they can drive down the quality and drive down the price. Essentially what they are doing is bulking the product with something other than kratom. It’s called a filler and this doesn’t mean that it is unhealthy, it just means that it isn’t a pure product. In addition, some businesses are able to sell at lower prices because they mix kratom veins and give it a new name. This broadens their product range and allows them to sell you the same thing under the unique name. They do this without considering the ramifications to their customers and the ramifications it might have for the future legality of kratom. The truth is, based on information I received from the natives in Indonesia, any mixtures other than Red, White, Yellow, and Green (horned and fermented) are not pure kratom. Don’t know what’s in your kratom? Ask your provider and ask for lab results.

 

I understand that kratom is beneficial to previous drug-users, and I am all for that! I think this plant should be used to help people deal with withdrawal symptoms from other opioids so they don’t have such a strong draw to go back to something that could kill them. But what about the construction worker who has back problems, the businessman with anxiety? The mother with depression? The grandmother with sleep issues? The veteran with PTSD? So many people deserve kratom! All of these people, with kratom in hand, can majorly help our cause! Not only that, don’t we want to help them? This is not just about someone taking away our kratom, like we’re children who’ve just been slapped on the wrist. This is about having compassion on people, sharing something that is native to the earth, and helping people find real freedom from pain or difficulties at an affordable price.