A couple of weeks ago, the New York Times Review of Books reviewed David Sheff’s new book Clean: Overcoming Addiction and Ending America’s Greatest Tragedy. After noting some highlights in the book, editor Mick Sussman aptly concluded that Sheff has “performed a vital service by compiling sensible advice on a subject for which sensible advice is in short supply.”
I agree. Sheff diagnoses the nation’s response to addiction as being as sick as addiction itself. His message cuts across not only the policies of criminalization but the criminalization of an addict’s character.