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MKat, Mephedrone, Meow-Meow – we all know what it is, and we all know everyone’s doing it. It’s the drug craze which is sweeping the nation and has seeped into the very core of university culture.
Why has Mephedrone – chemical name 4-MMC – become so popular? In a nutshell, it’s legal, cheap and accessible, which means pretty much anyone can get their hands on it (including the 15-year old boy who sold it to a girl in his class, who then died after taking it). A quick scan on Google brings up countless websites selling the drug for as little as £7 a gram, which can be ordered online and delivered the next day.
Mephedrone is a ‘first-time’ drug for many students – the legality and ease of online ordering eliminates the need for seedy contacts and the requirement of being part of the drug taking underworld. As a result, a huge amount of people take it and award themselves the ‘cool drug-taker’ tag, and this new culture has produced a domino effect of users spreading the drug throughout their social circles. On the other end of the spectrum are the more hardened drug-takers, who may treat MKat as a ‘baby drug’ due its lack of strength compared to MDMA for example. This group, in addition to the “it’s-legal-so-it’s-ok” thinkers, who naively but logically think that if something is dangerous then the government would illegalise it, are in serious danger of complacent thinking – any drug, regardless of whether or not it is legal, or how ‘strong’ it is, needs to be treated with the respect it deserves.
For those who have not experienced Mephedrone, it’s a stimulant which lasts a relatively short time, causing people to take excessive amounts of it. This compulsion to constantly top up is what users report to be the real danger- like coke, it has a very ‘moreish’ element to it, and as Mkat users could potentially have several times more cheap and cheerful Mephedrone than cocaine on them in any one sitting, it stands to logic that they would be ingesting a hell of a lot more drugs than before.
Although Mephedrone hasn’t been termed officially ‘addictive’, user reports from across the country could indicate otherwise. I’ve heard instances of MKat binges lasting days, while a friend of mine told of his mate who had been taking Mephedrone solidly for a week, and was experiencing intense depression. His doctor advised him to go cold turkey and not take the drug again. If you are going to take MKat, be prepared for the serious amount of gurns and the comedown, which ranges from feeling very shitty to bizarre rashes to depression and psychosis.
The purpose of this article is not to be a lights-flashing, sirens-blaring, ‘DON’T TAKE DRUGS’ warning being rammed down your throat, but MKat really is a national craze, the likes of which we haven’t seen in years. One could even suggest that Mephedrone is to the Noughties what ecstasy was to the Nineties – you’ll be down the pub in twenty years’ time looking back with your mate, ‘remember ‘09/’10 when everyone was on that Mephedrone…’
The Mephedrone phenomenon is very ‘open’ in the sense that it is not confined to the drug-taking community – the media has gone crazy about it and the majority of the general, non-drug-taking public have an idea of what’s going on, one example being my friend’s perfectly straight-edged dad who runs a respectable business in an office he rents in an office block in West London. One day he arrived at work to find the police outside the building because there was a Mephedrone company operating on the floor below him!
The problem with MKat is that its use will continue to rise, with detrimental results. It will draw people in, who before never even had drugs on their radars, and to those ‘first-timers’ it will serve as a gateway drug to stronger and harder substances. The government will definitely illegalise it, but the labs which produce drugs such as Mephedrone only have to change one molecule for it to suddenly become a new drug, thereby jumping the legislation and constantly being one step ahead of the law.
Whether you’re a first-timer, a naive-thinker or a long-time user, be wary of MKat and its hidden dangers. After all, curiosity killed the kat.