Drug-selling proves to be widespread on LGBTQ ‘dating’ apps

From left: Jeff Small, Jason Eccker and Brandon Reid joined Tuesday's show. CREDIT KAY MARIE OF PERFECTIVE PHOTOGRAPHY AND ST. LOUIS PUBLIC RADIO

It should surprise no one that addiction to dangerous illegal drugs goes along with addiction to promiscuous and unhealthy gay sex, and recent developments in St. Louis, Mo. prove it.

Gay “dating” apps, which in fact are hookup sex apps, have been found to be a thriving medium for drug trafficking. Drugs such as crystal meth, commonly referred to as “Tina” by the LGBTQ community, are commonly if covertly hawked on apps such as Grindr and Scruff. Users put a capital “T” in their usernames, or use emojis of ice cream or ice cubes to let others know they have the drug. Skiing symbols connote cocaine availability.

The connection between the druggie lifestyle and the gay-hookup lifestyle has, in other words, become clear and undeniable.

Jeff Small, a reporter for St. Louis television station KSDK, described recently to St. Louis Public Radio how drugs are being trafficked through digital means in the LGBTQ community. He detailed his own experience with the apps, his own arrest for meth possession and his addiction.

Small said some app users don’t hide their drug sales at all. “Some actually, surprisingly, are very bold,” he said. “Even when I was using, I’m like, ‘My goodness, they’re not hiding much at all’.”

Small said that acquiring drugs via app was easier than buying on the street. “It was always very easy to find if I was looking for someone to use it with,” he said.

To listen to the full discussion, which included calls from two St. Louis residents discussing their own experience with drugs and dating apps, go here.


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