This is how “epidemics” begin


The Bernalillo County Board of Commissioners

WHEREAS, heroin use in New Mexico and the availability of the drug has shown a steady
increase over the past five years according to the National Substance Abuse Index and at least 15 people in Albuquerque under the age of 24 died from heroin overdoses in 2008; and…

WHEREAS, in response to these and other senseless deaths, Jennifer Weiss, whose own son,
Cameron, suffered and died from heroin addiction, formed the Heroin Awareness Committee (HAC ) whose members decided to take action rather than pretend the epidemic does not exist; and…

No, let’s all pretend that the epidemic actually does exist.

Because grieving parents make great medical experts

Click to access NMDA_RegKit13_Final.pdf

New Mexico Dental Association 104th Annual Session

Speaker:  Jennifer Weiss

Event:  Opiates and the Brain

We will have a discussion on how opiates affect the brain, their addictive qualities and how prevention is a far better option than treatment. We will also offer ideas on how the dental community can help be part of the solution to an epidemic affecting so many people in NM.

4/17/2014, Montoya Campus Guest Speaker Series – Heroin Addiction: How You Can Help Someone Struggling With Addiction. Learn how prescription opiates and heroin affect the brain and body and how you can help someone who may be struggling with addiction. New Mexico’s overdose rate is more than twice the national average, and New Mexico Young people are twice as likely to use heroin than young people in other states. Fina out why this is such a problem and what you can do to help stop it. Presented by Jennifer Weiss, Executive Director of Healing Addiction in Our Community

9/19/2013, Turning the Curve on Opioid Abuse in Bernalillo County

Click to access Opioid%20Summit%20_1%20Report%20-%20FINAL.pdf

The beginnings of this Summit go back more than two years to a meeting where Jennifer Weiss
and others from the Heroin Awareness Committee pointed out to Commissioner Hart Stebbins
the size of the drug problem…

You know, because Ms. Weiss is an “expert” on the “drug problem.”  And politicians only listen to “experts.”

Importantly, the amount of morphine equivalents dispensed has fallen since 2010 to below the 2008 level. This means that the amount per prescription has fallen…

This Summit should consider:  

Every student in middle and high school being assessed for drug dependency and offered counseling if needed…

Next comes drug testing every middle and high school student.

LUNCHEON KEYNOTE:  Sam Donaldson, news correspondent


4/25/2010, The Six Reasons People Attempt Suicide

Given how much losing my patient affected me, I’ve only been able to guess at the devastation these people have experienced. Pain mixed with guilt, anger, and regret makes for a bitter drink, the taste of which I’ve seen take many months or even years to wash out of some mouths…

People who’ve survived suicide attempts have reported wanting not so much to die as to stop living, a strange dichotomy but a valid one nevertheless. If some in-between state existed, some other alternative to death, I suspect many suicidal people would take it. For the sake of all those reading this who might have been left behind by someone’s suicide, I wanted to describe how I was trained to think about the reasons people kill themselves. They’re not as intuitive as most think…

When You Think That It Can’t Get Any Worse – It Does ?

1/3/2012, Champion of Pain Relief Siobhan Reynolds Dead in Plane Crash

By Maia Szalavitz

All of us are irreplaceable to someone—but few are irreplaceable in the public sphere. Siobhan Reynolds, 50, founder of the Pain Relief Network, who died in a plane crash Christmas Eve, was the exception. She tirelessly, compassionately and at huge financial and emotional cost to herself, worked to debunk myths about opioid treatment of chronic pain that continue to emerge even now.

The aspiring documentary filmmaker and mother of one was moved to activism by the overwhelming chronic pain suffered by her husband. Further spurred by learning that her son had inherited the same genetic disease, Reynolds was relentless.

Why, she asked, when opioids can help treat chronic pain, are they frequently only available to the dying—but not if your agony will last years? Why, when addiction to opioids is actually rare, do we treat them as though everyone who takes these drugs is likely to get instantly hooked? And why do we seem to see addiction—even in the dying— as a worse side effect than agony or even death?

…Later, in Florida, Reynolds came upon the story of Richard Paey… Although he was put under surveillance for weeks and never found to sell a single pill, he was nonetheless arrested for trafficking, convicted and sentenced to a mandatory 25-year prison term in 2004, based merely on the weight of the drugs he possessed. In prison, ironically, he was surgically implanted with a morphine pump that gave him doses higher than the opioid levels he had been convicted for taking.

Reynolds sprung into action, drawing attention to the case in the New York Times, 60 Minutes, and countless other major media outlets— generating such persistently bad publicity that Florida’s governor ultimately pardoned Paey.

A cousin of the Kennedy’s, Reynolds shared both the family’s commitment to public service and, seemingly, its undue portion of tragedy. Using her own money and whatever donations she could gather, she traveled the country. She gave strategic advice and legal referrals to doctors prosecuted for prescribing high doses of opioids.

Indeed, although her critics are now claiming that there is no evidence to support long term use of opioids for chronic pain, as she argued, compared to the vast majority of other drugs, there’s actually more data favoring long term opioid use. That’s because the FDA only requires short term testing for approval, a context often not mentioned in these attacks…

Before Reynolds, prosecution of opioid-prescribing doctors was simple: hold a press conference, label a medical practice a “pill mill,” call the physicians “pushers with pens,” and file murder charges against them for every patient under their care who died with opioids in their bodies. For good measure, invite both the grieving relatives and the addicts who blame the doctor for their problems speak out

Reynolds increasing success at changing the narrative of these cases drew resistance from the DEA and prosecutors. In the last case she took on, Kansas prosecutor Tanya Treadway tried to issue a gag order on her, but was denied by the court. Undeterred, Treadway subpoenaed Reynolds for obstructing justice, presumably because the activist had put up a billboard proclaiming the innocence of the doctor being prosecuted. But bizarrely, the actual charges against her remained secret and over $40,000 in fines related to the case bankrupted Reynolds’ organization.

Brainy quotes on Enemies

“The best weapon against an enemy is another enemy.”  Friedrich Nietzsche

“The reason grandparents and grandchildren get along so well is that they have a common enemy.”  Sam Levenson

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”  Sun Tzu

“Look at market fluctuations as your friend rather than your enemy; profit from folly rather than participate in it.”  Warren Buffett

“It was my duty to shoot the enemy, and I don’t regret it. My regrets are for the people I couldn’t save: Marines, soldiers, buddies. I’m not naive, and I don’t romanticize war. The worst moments of my life have come as a SEAL. But I can stand before God with a clear conscience about doing my job.”  Chris Kyle

“It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind.” Voltaire

“When you’re taught to love everyone, to love your enemies, then what value does that place on love?”  Marilyn Manson

“Alcohol may be man’s worst enemy, but the bible says love your enemy.”  Frank Sinatra

“I am more afraid of alcohol than of all the bullets of the enemy.”  Stonewall Jackson

“You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.” Winston Churchill

“Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names.”  John F. Kennedy

“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”  J. K. Rowling

“The best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend.”  Abraham Lincoln

“A friend is nothing but a known enemy.”  Kurt Cobain

“Always forgive your enemies – nothing annoys them so much.”  Oscar Wilde

“You see, we are here, as far as I can tell, to help each other; our brothers, our sisters, our friends, our enemies. That is to help each other and not hurt each other.”  Stevie Ray Vaughan

“A wise woman wishes to be no one’s enemy; a wise woman refuses to be anyone’s victim.” Maya Angelou

8/2/2014, Woman charged with sister in drug case to plead

Jennifer and Jacqueline Weiss… are charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of meth. Jacqueline Weiss pleaded guilty in May. The attorney for Jennifer Weiss filed notice earlier this week that she wants to change her plea to guilty. A plea hearing has not been set.

Los Alamos Juvenile Justice Board website

Jennifer Weiss, Executive Director of the Heroin Awareness Committee (HAC), presented “Opiate Addiction—No Exceptions” to the LA JJAB board and to members of the community on April 17, 2013. The presentation and discussion focused on drug addiction in New Mexico and the prevalence of prescription drug abuse among our youth. Did you know….New Mexico has the highest drug-induced death rate in the nation? More people in New Mexico die from drug overdoses than car accidents? Prescription opiates (i.e. – Oxycontin, Percocet, Hydrocodone, Vicodin) are considered synthetic heroin? They are chemically the same as heroin. Few heroin addicts start off using heroin? Most start with prescription opiates. Heroin has a 98% addi[c]tion rate; many become addicted after just one “try.”

This kind of rhetoric is what happens when victims of the drug war are allowed to spread misinformation, because who wants to question a grieving parent?  And the current media attention is to sell the new long-term drug rehabilitation center, isn’t it?

And what’s the deal with Mrs. Weiss-Burke being a registered agent for a “limited liability” company (filed in December 2009)?  Is this part of her nonprofit that New Mexicans are paying for?

Wikipedia:  A limited liability company is the U.S.-specific form of a private limited company. It is a business structure that combines the pass-through taxation of a partnership or sole proprietorship with the limited liability of a corporation.

And here we have another LLC filing (4/30/2007) with the same address as the above LLC:

And here’s Bizapedia’s listing for the Heroin Awareness Committee (filed on October 6, 2010):

9/12/2011, La Cueva Hosts Assembly on Alcohol, Drug Awareness

All students in sports or extracurricular activities at Albuquerque Public Schools La Cueva High are required to attend an alcohol and drug awareness assembly… School coaches and activity sponsors are expected to attend with their teams and clubs. Parents are encouraged to participate as well.

The APS Crossroads Program is partnering with Safe Teen New Mexico to host the event with two focuses:

The damaging effects of alcohol on the teen brain
The illegal use of prescription drugs

The assembly will feature two short movies: “Smashed: Youth Brains and Alcohol” and “High,” which is about prescription drug abuse.

The movies will be followed by a question and answer period with two expects: Dr. Peter DeBenedittis, a media literacy and prevention specialist with the Bernalillo County Substance Abuse Task Force who is featured in “Smashed”; and Dr. Megan Thompson, associate professor of pharmacy practice and acting dean for professional education at the UNM College of Pharmacy.

In addition, the program will feature testimonials from Erika Pohl, a La Cueva graduate and recovering drug addict, and Jennifer Weiss, co-founder and president of the Heroin Awareness Committee.

12/8/2014, One-time heroin addict rebuilds life

“Methadone is expensive, and it has side effects. It’s not so good for my teeth and I’ve put on a lot of weight, but it’s worth it.”

Her employer, a cellphone company, is very supportive, giving her time to go to her program and to clinic appointments, just as it would if she had diabetes or another chronic disease. “I’m actually covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act,” she explains.

New Mexico State Health Improvement Plan (May 2014)

New Mexico Prescription Drug Misuse and Overdose Prevention and Pain Management council issue annual recommendations to the office of the governor and state legislature on policy and program responses to the epidemic of prescription drug overdose.

Dr. Michael Landen, NM Department of Health
Dr. Steve Jenkusky, NM Medical Board
Dr. Nancy Darbro, NM Board of Nursing
Larry Loring, NM Board of Pharmacy
Dr. Bill Barkman, NM Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners
Frances Lovett, NM Board of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine
Dr. Jessica Brewster, NM Board of Dental Health
Dr. Steven Seifert, UNM Health Sciences Center
Dr. Mark Chiu, NM Medical Soriety
Dr. Ernie Dole, NM Association of Pharmacists
Margreet Jenness, NM Association of Nurse Practitioners
Chris Felt, NM Association of Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists
Dr. Brent Brevard, NM Association of Osteopathic Physicians
Dr. Joanna Katzman, Pain Management Specialist
Robert Geist, Consumer Health Advocate
Jennifer Weiss, Healing Addictions on Our Community
Dr. Julie Muche, NM Medical Society