Back from a busy trip and I wanted to thank Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin for his kind words recommending my book, Dreamland, during his first budget address to the Commonwealth and Kentucky state legislators last week.
I’m very honored and touched by what he said, and that he followed those words with a commitment to increase funding for opiate-addiction treatment over each of the next two years. [Click here to view his speech. The part I’m referring to begins about 59:30.]
When I began writing the book that became Dreamland, I occasionally received strange reactions from people wondering what on earth I was thinking writing about heroin. Didn’t that, after all, belong to the 1970s?
I didn’t think so. I felt it rumbling beneath the surface and ready to explode, just no one was talking about it in 2012 and 2013, and even in 2014. Most of those who knew about it from personal or family experience were ashamed to speak.
So it feels satisfying that the book is helping people in a position of public influence, among them the governor of Kentucky, a state overwhelmed by this scourge, understand it, talk openly about it, and make policy to address it.
Storytelling will do that. That’s what I’ve long believed. Thanks, governor!