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Tom Petty, EDM, & The Hypocrisy Surrounding Drug Use

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To Tom Petty & EDM- The Hypocrisy That Is Your Drug Use


Image Credit: Lynn Goldsmith

This begins with me prepping a post to cover Tom Petty's recent comments on EDM culture in an interview featured on USA Today.

On EDM (EDC specifically), Petty says "I don’t think it would be any fun without the drugs... It’s a drug party. I knew it as soon as I saw the ad. I went, ‘Ooh, dead people.’ Do you need the money so bad that you’ll put some kid’s life at risk?"

As I dove in to cover the story, I was ready to call out Mr. Petty, something scary came to mind- the bigger picture- a.k.a. the hypocrisy of drug use in American culture.

Those that use drugs rationalize what they do as being "cool", sometimes even safe or harmless.

"I just drink."

"I just smoke weed."

"I'm only smoking heroin, not slamming"

"Nobody ever died from pure molly."

"Man, back in my day the drugs were clean."

"It's cool, my doctor prescribed me Xanax, Norcos, Adderall, fill in the blank."

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"Your drugs are bad, mine are ok."

Get off your high horse. Drugs in all forms have negative effects associated with both their abuse AND use- some at even low dosages. So Tom Petty, whatever drug your generation was doing, it doesn't make you any better than what is happening in 2014- just different. And remember, a lot of rock stars have died from drug use - Presley, Morrison, Joplin, and Hendrix - unfortunately the list can go on.

Now to EDM Fan- step away from your contrived disillusions that this scene doesn't involve some drug use. People have died this year from suspected overdoses at Coachella, EDC Las Vegas, Electric Forest, Glastonbury, and most recently Pemberton in British Colombia. There is a problem here.

Earlier this week, we ran a post called "5 Things Your Molly Hangover Feels Like". People tried to rip us for naming what is usually true- you feel like shit after you do ecstasy. Your brain chemistry is off and you become a bit more emotional. Sure you might not need to check into to a psych ward, but you're still not firing on all cylinders.

People also came down on us for acknowledging that people in the EDM scene do drugs. In almost the same breath, they attacked us about how we were wrong, based on their own personal experience, about the ecstasy hangover.

"Don't write about drugs because that's not what the scene is about. Also, I do MDMA when I go to shows, so I know first hand Magnetic Magazine is wrong about what the molly morning after feels like."

So let's get this straight- EDM isn't about the drugs, yet you know so much about the drugs because you do them at EDM shows?

Face it- Some people who like EDM also like to do drugs. Is it 100% of the scene? No, not at all. But it plays a part in the culture.   We need to take ownership of this.

For some, it's kind of about the drugs.

Sex, drugs and EDM.

Oops, I mean rock & roll.


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