Chuck Rosenberg, former, acting administrator of the DEA, spent his last day as a member of the Trump administration’s Justice Department at Yale Law School, where, according to the Hartford Courant, he lectured those in attendance about how the opioid epidemic is a problem spanning the political divide.
“This is not a Republican thing or a Democrat thing,” Rosenberg said. “I don’t give a damn about politics. This is a public health crisis.”
It was revealed earlier last week that Rosenberg, who has been in charge of the DEA ever since President Obama put him in the position in 2015, was resigning from his post, citing concerns with President Trump’s lack of respect for the law.
“The neighborhoods in which we live are better for your commitment to the rule of law, dedication to the cause of justice and perseverance in the face of adversity,” he wrote in a memo to his staff. “You will continue to do great things. I will continue to root for you, now from the sidelines.”
Some reports suggested that Rosenberg’s resignation has been on the verge of happening ever since Trump gave a speech over the summer encouraging police officers to get violent with criminal suspects.
Other new sources speculated about how Rosenberg might be moving on because the Justice Department has refused to give the DEA permission to make good on its promise to end the University of Mississippi’s 50-year monopoly of the production of research marijuana.
Whatever the reason for his departure, Rosenberg is officially no longer under the thumb of President Trump.
“This will be the third time I’ve left the Department of Justice,” Rosenberg said. “I love the Department of Justice. We are far from perfect, but we try really, really hard to get stuff right.”
Rosenberg’s recent dialogue with the students of Yale resonated a popular argument offered up by many drug reformers. He explained how it was not plausible for law enforcement and the inner workings of the criminal justice system to solve the nation’s drug problem.
“We are not going to prosecute or enforce our way out of this mess, no way,” he said.
However, Rosenberg went on to say that he believes “there’s a crucial role in law enforcement” in the way of tearing down the “cartels and the gangs profiting off this poison.”
During the discussion, Rosenberg talked about how the only true way to combat the opioid epidemic, and other hazards that could potentially arise as a result of the population’s lust for controlled substances, is for those generations-in-the-know to educate the people around them.
“We have to talk about things that are hard to talk about,” he said. “Educate yourself. And then find someone you love and educate them.”
The opioid epidemic has been the hot topic of discussion around the political waters for the past few years, but the situation has continued to spiral out of control—contributing to the highest rate of addiction the country has ever seen, which has sent thousands up on thousands of people to an early grave.
The Trump administration has thrown around problem solving concepts from declaring the opioid crisis a “national emergency,” which, considering the president’s normal course of action, could involve a series of Tweets suggesting that, “We have a big problem in this country. It’s call opioids. These drugs are bad, very, very bad. But we have a solution.”
Even Trump’s wife, First Lady Melania Trump, has been out in the field, giving fluff-filled speeches about how she is going to save kids from the grips of these addictive drugs. Spoiler: She can’t. She won’t.
Sadly, while there are countless theories floating around about how we, as a nation, can begin to stomp out this scourge, which is now claiming the lives of around 64,000 people each year, no one has any idea about how to effectively control the situation.
Part of the problem is our federal officials cannot seem to differentiate between what is real and what is propaganda.
When discussing with Yale the dangers of fentanyl being used to cut popular street drugs, Rosenberg said, “We’re even getting reports of fentanyl in marijuana.”
Although it is possible that people could be mixing fentanyl in marijuana to provide a different effect, similar to how embalming fluid was once used back in 1990s, there is no definitive evidence that fentanyl-laced cannabis is something that is being sold on the black market.
Earlier this year, the DEA even admitted that fentanyl and marijuana was a combination that it had yet to witness.
“In regard to marijuana, I’m not familiar with that,” DEA spokesman Melvin Patterson told the Cincinnati Enquirer. But he admitted, “there could be” some cases in which this mixture could occur.