Over the years there has been talk of a Kratom ban in our country. This is unsettling, and many Americans are concerned with the actions taken by various government offices against this plant. Dave Herman, chairman of the American Kratom Association, is not one to back down from bringing the best information to the public. He is also not one to back down from protecting Kratom either. One of the best emails Mr. Herman sent out said this:
Kratom Warriors: We’re sounding the alarm. A few days ago, we recognized the anniversary of the Notice of Scheduling for Kratom. Make no mistake, they tried to schedule kratom once and the FDA wants to do it again. We need your help today to save kratom from being scheduled. Actually, we need your help right now. The FDA has declared war on kratom and is filling the mainstream media with one attack after another. They are saying kratom is a dangerously addictive opioid that kills people. The scientists say that is not true – not even close. The FDA’s audience is not just the DEA. They are talking directly to state policy makers too. And their anti-kratom campaign is working in some places. That is why we are asking for your help right now! ~Dave Herman
Pretty startling, right?
I’m not here to water-down any preconceived notions one should have about the FDA, DEA, or any person who stands for the Kratom ban, but I would like to share some details with the Kratom community on what’s going on.
On February 16, 2018, Alexander Kariman filed for patent 15/898,232 (United States Patent Application 20180169172) which states their intentions for filing this patent on active alkaloids in mitragynine speciosa.
Who is Alexander Kariman? That’s a good question! My research cannot bring anything up about this mysterious man except for a lone LinkedIn profile which connects him to a company called SECROM, a VoIP telephone security service.
However, past patent filings could suggest this is the right person as they share information about the technological and network-accessible field SECROM provides services to.
Alexander Kariman listed this patent as an invention, and in this patent invention summary, this statement was made:
The disclosed invention generally relates to pharmaceutical and nutraceutical compounds and methods for reducing appetite, muscle fatigue, and pain…The aforesaid compound and method in some subjects may reduce acute pain associated with cancer, and in another embodiment, with a medical procedure. The proposed invention provides methods and compounds for treatment of multiple diseases and disorders at various stages, and different patients potentially presenting different symptoms, and as such may require larger or smaller doses to achieve the desired efficacy.
On the heels of an announcement that the government is considering a ban on Kratom one needs to understand what has to happen before the ban can take place.
Do not forget the list of criteria the DEA must have before making a substance Schedule I. One of the ways they classify a substance is through an 8-factor analysis test.
This brings me to another person who is on our side, and that is Dr. Jack Henningfield. Dr. Henningfield conducted his own 8-factor analysis test on Kratom. He discovered that Kratom, when used responsibly, is no more addictive than a cup of coffee.
This panic you’re feeling is a good thing. It means you understand the severity of the implications brought forth these recent events. It’s good because you can use that energy you’re feeling to fuel the fire and fight even harder for Kratom in these coming months.
But first you need to understand the rules for governing these types of situations. Before your underwear goes into a wad and cold sweat starts trickling down your face, you need to realize our government has to follow a certain set of rules before anything can happen.
How To Enforce A Kratom Ban
The FDA has been sharing information about this plant they believe to be true.
When you see a strong force of government sharing this information on social media, and then you see the chairman, Dave Herman, of one of our most prestigious fighting headquarters sound like he’s really nervous, that makes the rest of us nervous as well.
However, one of the things we have on our side is something called “separation of powers”. This becomes a Constitutional question when we begin looking at a Kratom ban because Article I, Section 8 grants Congress the power to regulate Interstate Commerce and they cannot go outside of those powers granted to them by the Constitution. On the other hand, you have Article 2, which basically tasks them with the faithful execution of the law. This is where the Doctrine of Non-Delegation comes into play.
This Doctrine says the legislative branch cannot delegate its function to the executive branch to such an extent that the executive branch becomes the legislative branch.
The Constitution has all of these separated for a reason. There is a “limited way” in which a branch can delegate different things. This is called an “intelligible principle”. This is a guided principle in which Congress has given an agency so they can carry out that principle without legislation.
To accomplish enforcing the law, agencies have 2 options:
- #1 – Rule Making – the agency writes up a rule and puts it in the federal register. In August 2016 the FDA wrote up a rule to schedule Kratom. This is called an informal rule-making. As long as they meet the required procedures on the procedures act then they are able to go through with the rule or law they have determined.
- #2 – Adjudicate – usually done under criminal law, making a formal decision on a problem or disputed matter.
I have read many white-papers and documents which share scientific reasoning behind why the Kratom ban shouldn’t take place. You’ve read all of these too. You already understand the basic principles behind why you consume Kratom on a daily basis and how its helped you. We want to get the people in Washington to understand what we already know.
However, one thing we, as American citizens, might not know is the process through which the Kratom ban could take place. How is this going to work? Can the DEA press a button and make us all criminals? Can the FDA sway the DEA into thinking on their terms? According to the Constitution it’s not going to work that way.
On February 6, 2018, the FDA released a statement which shared the deaths of 36 people who took Kratom powder. Later, they adjusted the death toll and raised the number to 44, and then 66.
One of the sentences in their statement said this:
Our concerns related to this product, and the actions we’ve taken, are rooted in sound science and are in the interest of protecting public health.
The FDA is simply trying to protect the public from making a mistake and consuming Kratom. Let’s go over the quote. “…the actions we’ve taken, are rooted in sound science and are in the interest of protecting public health.”
In order to make the point clear after evaluating this statement, I need to share another quote in the announcement:
Notably, we recently conducted a novel scientific analysis using a computational model developed by agency scientists, which provided even stronger evidence of kratom compounds’ opioid properties. These kinds of models have become an advanced, common and reliable tool for understanding the behavior of drugs in the body.
Their attempts at “sound science” consisted of using a computer program to generate evidence. This is a very generic approach and cannot truly convey all there is to know about the Kratom plant.
This evidence came from modeling common Kratom compounds – notice the keyword is “model” – and they determined Kratom had similar 3D pharmacophores to known opioid ligands.
This medicinal chemist explains the language of this quote as a futile way to discover something in its true form. More often than not, this chemist explains, how people fail more than they accomplish their goals when studying something through a technology device.
The fact remains the same, in any research situation, we should be exposed to any and all facts and evidence that points to indisputable truths, not opinions, and not even computer generated responses or models.
Experimental evidence is a stronger form of proof than any computational device which works around the models of a chemical compound. Experimental evidence should always take precedence over any computer program; the program only works from the ‘model’ of plant specimen, not the real thing.
The irrefutable facts about Kratom should not be denied or overlooked by reputable doctors and scientists. We cannot learn the entire truth about Kratom by using a computer model. This experimental research proves what the Kratom community has known all along – Kratom has changed lives for the better.
Tyler Potts gives a great example of exactly how we will be able to stop the DEA by explaining some important principles inside the Kratom ban and the different regulations the government has.
The long arm of the law doesn’t look so long now…
Coming down to the bare bones of the chemical compounds of Kratom powder, this plant doesn’t fall under any of the constructs of the scheduling rules of the “Controlled Substances Act of 1970”.
Mr. Potts underlies a lot of truths in his video and I would recommend subscribing to his channel and learning more about the rules for governing when it comes to something as important as the Kratom ban.
Also take a look at Tyler’s legal paper on the scheduling of Kratom. It appears this will be a long process to come. However, there are some things you can continue to do to ensure the safety and truth about Kratom.
Police The Vendors
You realize one of the the reasons we’re fighting for this plant is because vendors all over the country are making medical claims about Kratom?
Whether they’re doing it purely for marketing reasons, or they understand the real benefits of the plant, they are shouting it from the rooftops and plastering it all over their websites and social accounts – and its not helping our cause.
Remember back in 2016 when the DEA announced their intent to ban Kratom? One of the major reasons was because they felt people were being swayed by (gasp) what they read on the internet. Eventually the DEA changed their mind because of public backlash and vendors continued selling their products.
While I can understand and agree with the entrepreneurial standpoint of a vendor who will do what it takes to sell their products, what I don’t understand is why they never follow the rules?
There are regulations you must follow, product and liability language that is pertinent to a business in this market, and oh yeah, YOU CAN’T MAKE MEDICAL CLAIMS!
Here’s what you need to do. If you see an article, a social media post, video, or any type of content like this coming from a vendor, let them know they are breaking the rules. This isn’t the way we’re going to win the battle against the Kratom ban.
Education is the best weapon you have in this proposed Kratom ban. We cannot simply be Kratom tea drinkers only, we must be doers as well.
It’s important to keep yourself apprised of the news regarding all things Kratom. That way nothing slips through the cracks. I realize this may seem like an impossible feat, but Google makes it easy with Google Alerts. Set up different alerts to notify you on a specific topic that you’re interested in.
Take some time to dig into them in the evening or read them before work in the morning.
Education and information is power. A group of Kratomites who know and understand current events and what’s happening in their world can help educate others who may not be as well-versed, and that’s why it’s our responsibility to stay updated – because other people may not have time. It is quite easy for the average person, who may not know about Kratom, to be persuaded by these informational prompts, however, your task is to update yourself so you can keep the public educated about this powerful plant called Kratom. It will take all of us to eliminate the negative press against Kratom.
Some Good News
Throughout this year, we have been fighting and trying to have our voices heard and on August 21st, 2018, it feels like somebody listened.
State Representative Vernon Jones has been appointed by Speaker David Ralston to the House Study Committee on risks associated with Kratom.
Why is this good news? This state representative is questioning the accuracy of the statements made by the FDA against Kratom.
These newly released studies give us an opportunity to get to the truth about kratom. We have seen too many instances where bureaucrats in Washington think they can tell the states what we should do and feed us misinformation to justify more regulation. ~Vernon Jones
What Jones is referring to is the Dr. Jane Babin – IP Synergy_ Comment [DEA-Docket No. 442W] about the faulty scientific evidence claimed by the FDA.
Babin shares her expertise and eloquently dismembers the claims made by the FDA, blaming a series of deaths on the usage of Kratom. These claims failed to mention that other substances and/or situations were present amongst these subjects. The prevailing cause of death was not and could not have been Kratom. Mr. Jones seems to be acceptant of the whole truth about this plant and we’re excited to see the results.
The FDA follows guidelines that are based on scientific evidence and findings. In doing so, they are protecting the public and the consumers from a variety harmful products. In doing so, we know the real truth will out about this plant and evidence will be revealed to the decision makers that this leaf isn’t harmful.
This is the law – to act on scientific evidence.
In order to adhere to the Kratom ban, different administrative powers have to follow a certain set of statutes and laws. Essentially, this falls to an 8-factor analysis test.
That fact in itself is enough to make you smile because you already know the results of the 8-factor analysis test performed by Dr. Jack Henningfield. Kratom passed the test and this is one of the main assessments performed on a substance for steps to be taken to schedule it.
That doesn’t mean you get to sit back and relax. This is the perfect opportunity for the Kratom community to continue the fight, bring the 8-factor analysis to your representative and make sure they understand the scientific importance of this plant.