Interviews

14: The Addicts’ Uprising

In the year 2000, a homeless drug addict on the streets of Vancouver was watching his friends die all around him. He started an uprising – one that transformed his city, his country, and the future of the war on drugs. His name was Bud Osborn, and this chapter is his story.

Bud’s father committed suicide when Bud was five years old, and Bud’s mother told her child that he had never known his father – that all his memories of him were just in his head. This is Bud talking about it:

This is Bud recalling seeing his mother being raped:

This is Bud explaining how he would try to shut himself off:

This is Bud explaining a time he seemed to try to kill himself as a child:

This is Bud explaining why he would eat newsprint as a child

This is Bud talking about his childhood:

This is Bud explaining the trances he would go into as a child:

This is him elaborating:

This is him explaining further:

This is Bud recalling what the police said to him after he tried to commit suicide again:

This is him explaining his teenage drinking:

This is him explaining his discovery of poetry, and how it changed his life:

This is him talking more about poetry:

This is Bud recalling what he was told about the local drug dealers in Harlem when he lived there:

This is him talking about how he felt

This is him talking about how he still felt suicidal:

This is him explaining how heroin made him feel:

This is him explaining how heroin stopped him feeling suicidal”

This is Bud recalling his night with a woman called Misty:

This is him explaining what it meant to him:

This is him recalling another suicide attempt:

And waking up from it:

This is him explaining the scepticism when he started the uprising:

This is Bud’s ex-girlfriend, Ann Livingstone, recalling the approach they took when the uprising began:

This is Bud explaining the early days of the uprising:

This is Bud explaining how it helped people to lessen their addictons:

This is Bud explaining that he wanted his spirit to wake up:

This is Dean Wilson, one of the people who rose up alongside Bud:

This is Philip Owen, the former mayor of Vancouver, who Bud was rising up against at first:

This is Philip Owen explaining his first meeting with addicts:

This is Philip Owen explaining what he says to other politicians now:

This is Philip Owen explaining he is sick of the “bullshit” politicians are forced to talk:

This is him elaborating on what he says to other politicians:

This is Philip’s approach to the drug war now:

This is Philip elaborating:

This is Philip recalling what people told him would happen if he supported drug users:

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