Protesting residents of the mostly white, working-class neighborhoods of Holmesburg and Mayfair in Northeast Philadelphia accepted back in 2013 that methadone clinics were needed to help people with opioid use disorders. The caveat, according to them, was that they didn’t belong near churches, daycares or schools—or anywhere near the residential zones and revitalizing business centers where people in Northeast Philly live and work.

Dr. Shover, a postdoctoral research fellow at Stanford University worked with fellow researchers Corey Davis, Sanford Gordon, and Keith Humphreys to buck a cannabis industry pearl of conventional wisdom; the oft-cited, often-sloganeered study by Marcus Bachhuber that found a positive correlation between medical cannabis states and a decrease in opioid overdose deaths from 1999-2010.

In a somewhat uniquely American way, opioid use disorder has become a marketing boon for the emerging cannabis industry. Advocates and industrialists alike have focus-grouped America’s deadliest epidemic into a modern-day Pepsi Challenge; a double-blind, peer-reviewed taste test where four-out-of-five addicts prefer medical marijuana.