"Killing Pain" Docu-Series Spotlights Oklahoma's Opioid Crisis

By Victoria Kim 09/05/18
"It’s hard to believe the power of this little molecule called an opioid."
Still from "Killing Pain"
Photo via YouTube

A new seven-part documentary focuses on the impact of the opioid crisis on Oklahomans.

Killing Pain, which is free to watch online, is a multi-faceted exploration of the opioid crisis, from the perspective of Oklahomans.

The seven-part series was produced by the Oklahoma City-based non-profit organization Fighting Addiction Through Education (FATE). The docu-series is just another arm of founder Reggie Whitten’s fight to spread awareness about the risks of opioid drugs.

Whitten has been doing this for 16 years, since the death of his son Brandon. Brandon’s addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs led to his death in 2002 at the age of 25.

“That’s when a part of me died and my life changed forever,” said Reggie Whitten. “I really don’t even remember who I used to be. It’s hard to believe the power of this little molecule called an opioid.”

Whitten travels throughout Oklahoma to tell Brandon’s story and speak about the opioid crisis. “You can’t fight an enemy until you know everything there is to know about it and I’ve spent the last 16 years obsessively learning about the enemy,” said Whitten. “Addiction is a very difficult adversary.”

Whitten noted that opioid-based prescription drugs are important for some, but that education about the risks is just as important. “For every one person that dies, we have tens of thousands who are living a life of misery,” said Whitten. “They’re highly addicted to this… drug.”

FATE also offers various programs designed for specific audiences such as the Life of an Athlete program, Native Fate (designed for Native American communities), elementary schoolers, college students, working professionals, and everyone in between.

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunger, who is interviewed in Killing Pain, lauded the documentary’s coverage of the “many tragic aspects” of Oklahoma’s opioid crisis.

“Although the reality of the story is painful, the good news is, Oklahoma is rising to meet this challenge,” said Hunger, according to News 4. “State officials, business leaders and community organizers are tired of watching our families suffer and are stepping up and doing something about it.”

The entire Killing Pain series is available to watch for free on YouTube.

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Victoria is interested in anything that has to do with how mind-altering substances impact society. Find Victoria on LinkedIn or Tumblr