In a scoop that will surely rival the significance of famed investigative reportage like "Blunts Found at Reggae Festival" and "Cocaine Use Suspected at Studio 54," the Miami Herald ran a front-page story today informing the community of something that just about everyone already knows: People do drugs at Ultra Music Festival. But not just any drugs, you see. The Herald has discovered that all the kids are doing "molly," a compound first synthesized in 1912 and which has been in recreational use in one form or another since the 1980s.
Even to the uninitiated, molly can be described thusly:
Person 1: Hey, do you remember Ecstasy?
Person 2: Uh, yeah, duh, I lived through the '90s.
Person 1: Well, that's MDMA, but to process it into pill form, you have to cut it with something else. Molly is just crystalized MDMA sold in powder or capsule form. Your drug dealer will tell you it's purer, but he might have cut it with something else.
Person 2: So same shit, different name?
Person 1: Basically.
Well, the Herald took nearly 1,200 words to try to explain that fact to its (presumably) elderly readers but didn't do as good a job.
The only interesting part in the piece is that apparently the Miami Police Department really didn't think it was much of a problem until 53-year-old mother of four Madonna infamously made a joke about it last year at Ultra.
"Molly is a new phenomenon. Something that is still developing," Maj. Jorge Martin, commander of the Miami Police Special Investigation Section, tells the paper. "When Madonna made her... remark, we were starting to see it. A year later, our investigation has grown twofold."
Madonna, during a surprise appearance during Avicii's set, asked the crowd: "How many of you people have seen Molly?" She claimed she was simply referring to a song by DJ Cedric Gervais called "Have You Seen Molly?"
"It's about a girl, because I was looking for this girl called Molly," Gervais told the paper. Right, and Britney Spears's "If U Seek Amy" was really about looking for a girl named Amy.
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Madonna controversies aside, the Herald piece comes with all the trappings of alarmist drug reporting, including anecdotes about extreme reactions, but never touches on broader safety issues such as the fact the drug can dehydrate you and that Ultra sells bottled water for a princely sum.
Of course, the bigger question here is how stupid and naive does the Herald think its audience is? Sure, maybe there are some old people who will be scandalized by this story, but splashing basic facts about a drug that's been around for decades on the front page of a paper serving a market that isn't exactly uninformed on drug use isn't a good way to reach anyone under 50. The odd irony is that the story was written by two Florida International University students for the school's South Florida News Service.
What do we expect next on the front page? "Exclusive: Apparently a Lot of Homeless People in Miami Are on Crack."