Adderall: Meth for America’s Privileged

adderall is meth for the white and privileged

Drugs have become a completely normal part of our society. There’s a drug for this, a drug for that, and a drug for everything else in between. Popping pills is now part of the American Dream. All of us want an edge in what we’re doing. We want to be the best. Some of us want to get the best grades to go to the best schools to get the best jobs. Some of us want to be able to work extra overtime to make more money to pay the bills. Some artists need to work tirelessly to create their next piece. But eventually, some of us run out of gas, so they say, and need some extra pep in our step. Everyone wants an edge. And the edge means being better at what you’re doing than the next guy. Instead of old fashioned hard work and dedication being a means to success, some Americans have turned to a very popular ADHD medication to give them the extra push they need. But what makes them different than any other drug addict?

White, rich, privileged, Americans have been taking Amphetamines for decades. The drug was accidentally created in the 1920s and soon became a staple in pharmacies across the nation. Its popularity took off in the 1960’s and soon thereafter became controlled by the government as a Schedule II narcotic, clamping down on the millions of amphetamine pills sold each year. The only problem with the drug has been the constant problem of figuring out what to prescribe it for. I mean, you can’t let a perfectly good, addictive drug go to waste. Amphetamines eventually became the go-to for treating ADHD in children, but as adults realized the powerful effect the drug could have on their studies and productivity, a new type of addict was born.

Now, in current times, it’s no secret that we have a massive methamphetamine problem. Stories come from all over about huge meth busts, labs catching on fire, and the rates of addiction are higher than ever before since the introduction of ultra-pure “ice.” And while all this is going on in what the upper class would consider to be the lower class, they’re turning their noses up and popping their Adderall to get through their exams and deadlines.

Now, tell me what the difference is between the two.

I don’t see any difference, other than the prejudices and cultural stigmas. White, upper class Americans have some resources others don’t have. They usually have the ability to purchase health insurance, which gives them access to doctors, who give them access to the drugs they want. The nice man in the white coat writes a prescription that you take to your friendly, neighborhood pharmacist, who then hands you your drugs, maybe within the hour. That’s the only difference I see. They’re scoring virtually the same drug at a pharmacy, instead of a “low class” drug dealer. Perhaps pharmacists are the drug dealers of the upper class…

The differences on a molecular level between Adderall and meth are negligible. Meth is amphetamine with an added CH3, or methyl group, turning amphetamine into methamphetamine. That’s it. Of course, when a person smokes or injects meth, they’re getting a much higher dose than one would get in their average Adderall pill. So, what’s the real difference between an Adderall user and a meth user? Their place in society and their amount of privilege, that’s what. Otherwise, they’re all one in the same.

They’re addicts.


Jason Good

Jason has been working in the field of addiction and recovery for over 10 years. Having been an addict himself he brings real-word experience to the table when helping addicts and their families, while also offering a first-person perspective to the current drug crisis. Jason is passionate about educating the public about what’s currently going on in our society, and thankfully, offers practical solutions. Jason is also the co-host of The Addiction Podcast—Point of No Return. You can follow Jason on Google+, Twitter, or connect with him on LinkedIn.