From the Newsletter of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies
MAPS - Volume 7 Number 2 Spring 1997 - p. 21

Comments on BBC's Psychedelic Science

Karl Jansen, M.D., Ph.D.

"Sasha Shulgin and other persons primarily identified with MDMA were omitted (from Psychedelic Science), as was all reference to MDMA. This was a politically necessary step because of the hysteria which now surrounds this drug in the U.K. It is impossible to make any positive statements about the drug in public without calls for one's resignation which resemble the true spirit of McCarthyism more than any other aspect of the so-called "war on drugs" in the U.K. to date.

The situation with respect to LSD is in fact quite calm in the media at present, although huge jail sentences continue to be handed down routinely in LSD cases. Psychedelic Science has already attracted a great deal of negative criticism and demands for cuts from the BBC legal department, who have viewed the program as much too positive about drugs. Excluding MDMA at least avoids the number one hysteria producer in the U.K. It is unfortunate that my comments about sensory input being shut off were edited in such a way as to appear as if they refer to psychedelic drugs such as LSD. In fact, in the original interview these comments were made with respect to ketamine, in which I have a special interest. LSD, psilocybin and mescaline can sometimes lead to a sensory deluge and even greater engagement with the environment than usual. Ketamine, by blocking glutamate transmission, can result in complete dissociation from the environment."

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