In the first half, guest host Connie Willis (info) was joined by CEO of Verifique USA Bobby Betros, who discussed his work developing technologies that detect and identify illegal drugs and explosives. Among its other products, his company makes drug test kits used by police, hospitals, schools, and laypeople, which Betros considers a vital tool in the face of over 100,000 opioid overdoses per year in the United States. Along with testing products, prevention, awareness, and effective drug laws are key to controlling what Betros sees as a crisis among today's young people.
The drug fentanyl, Betros explained, is particularly dangerous, both to its users and the people and dogs working in law enforcement. Cheap to manufacture and extremely powerful, fentanyl is a popular choice for drug traffickers looking to cut their costs. For this reason, fentanyl is often added to— or substituted for —other recreational drugs, putting people at risk even when they don't intend to take it. Tiny amounts of fentanyl can be lethal, making the casual use of low-level drugs like cannabis more dangerous as well.
UFO investigator Preston Dennett was the guest in the second half. He talked about the theme of his recent book UFOs at the Drive-In, which explores encounters with extraterrestrial craft at the popular local movie spots of the 1960s and 70s. Bennett said he first came to the topic through a co-worker's anecdote, which led him to realize through research that the phenomenon was more common than he had imagined. Despite the sharp decline in the number of drive-ins in the US in past decades, Bennett reported that he's found cases of their being visited by UFOs even up to the present day.
There doesn't seem to be a pattern as to the types of movies being screened when the encounters happen, nor does attraction to the light beams and images appear to be a factor, related Bennett. Instead, the duration of the alien visits leads him to believe that the ETs are attracted to the prospect of making themselves known to a large crowd of people. The crafts typically fly quite low to the ground, flashing their lights and moving in darting patterns, and sometimes release smaller craft above the cars, he said. Although Bennett acknowledged that it's speculation on his part at this point, his theory is that the drive-in visits are the aliens' attempts to acclimate Earth's inhabitants to their existence in order to facilitate full contact in the future.