Sunday, 4 November 2018

Marijuana Legalisation

While vegans are fun, low hanging fruit, due to their propensity to be so readily triggered; I feel it time to move to a target more deserving of genuine ire.  It of course must be a target that can also be readily triggered and while anything leaning toward the left tends to fit that bill - victims, all - today the shrill wail of the 420 crowd calls to me.  Let us discuss, the marijuana legalisation advocate.

As someone who is predominantly a libertarian politically, I occasionally find myself in the awkward position of acting against something that in principal I actually agree with.  I prefer the government to stay out of people's lives as much as possible.  As such that would logically extend to individuals having the right to kill themselves however they please, whether with drugs, electrocution, auto-erotic asphyxiation, the choice is theirs!

Historically and statistically speaking, we can see that governments and laws largely have no effect on drug use in society at all, except when they promote effective, factual education.  You can look at prohibition in the USA as a perfect example of the uselessness of legislation.  And you can look at the massive decline in cigarette use, and public opinion turning against it, to readily demonstrate the effectiveness of large scale education campaigns (taxation possibly played a part in reducing usage, but certainly not in changing public opinion).  Admittedly there was also a bunch of exaggerated propaganda regarding cigarettes to accelerate the process.

In fact I firmly believe that in a society with effective education, not just about drugs but general literacy as well, drugs wouldn't be a serious problem no matter what laws were in place.

That being the case, why would I write this, purely to mock pro marijuana advocates?

Well if there's one thing I hate, it's The Last Jedi, the greatest travesty of human creation.  But if there's two things I hate, the second would be the completely insane notion that people need 12+ years in school to learn how to do jobs that in reality the average 12 year old could easily be taught to do.  But if there's three things I hate, the third would be listening to stupid people parrot arguments they've been programmed to repeat by public relations experts.  And here we have the pro-marijuana advocate.

If the only argument given for marijuana legalisation was "The government has no right to tell us what we can do with our own lives," I wouldn't argue with that at all.  I certainly think using marijuana is a terrible, harmful idea, but people are welcome to any terrible idea they like, so long as they remain completely responsible for the outcome of that idea and any repercussions it may have on others around them.

But of course this world revolves almost entirely around propaganda and skilled public relations people.  Given a billion dollar budget and a competent PR team, I have little doubt I could have a nation eating their first born children within 15-25 years and utterly convinced that it is immoral and cruel to not do that.

Same goes with marijuana.  Given hundreds of millions, now possibly billions of dollars of funds for propaganda, the tide has very quickly turned from marijuana being strictly illegal almost everywhere, to frequently being referred to as a safer alternative to alcohol, and indeed a medical panacea.

While I have to show some respect for the skilled PR people behind this now multi-billion dollar legalised marijuana industry, that respect doesn't extend to the unemployed pothead robotically repeating the phase "MARIJUANA IS A PLANT, NOT A DRUG!"

In fact if there were an award for the highest ratio of conciseness to stupidity of anything any human has ever stated, that phrase would certainly be a contender.  I'd frankly love to meet the person who thought to promote it as a propaganda line, because that at least was truly inspired.

First of all, plenty of drugs are either derived from or just straight out are plants.

But even more to the point, a drug is defined simply as any substance that has a physiological or mental effect when introduced to the body.  So quite literally, if rubbing a toilet brush on your face made you high, then toilet brushes would be drugs.  Marijuana makes you high, therefore it is a drug.

Now when some 10 year old kid tells you that, you know they just got it from their pothead parents and that's understandable.  But when a pothead parent tells you that, you have to really wonder, are they actually stupid enough to believe that, or are they just trying to convince you of it to justify ruining their own and their kids' lives?

Then there's the beloved claim that alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana, when that is entirely based on the much higher usage rate of alcohol compared to marijuana.  A conveniently ignored fact.  Not to say alcohol abuse isn't dangerous, but a person having a glass of wine a week isn't causing any harm to themselves, but having a joint a week certainly is.  And trying to convince people and kids in particular that the joint a week is safer is, shall we say, less than honest at best and manslaughter at worst.

One thing that is clear is that the pro-pot people are at least aware that it is almost entirely a propaganda game to have their way.  As I mentioned earlier, they are if anything even easier to "trigger" than vegans.  You can say on social media for example that alcohol is a dangerous substance and that's fine and no one really cares, but go out and say pot is a dangerous substance and suddenly the angry comments and messages from people and groups you've never heard of come flooding in!

And the danger of the propaganda game is that in a society with effective, truthful drug education and legalised marijuana, very few people would make the choice to take it; but in a society where propaganda is used to promote broadly that marijuana is harmless, not addictive, not a gateway drug, not a drug at all, safer than alcohol and so on, you instead get people and kids in particular totally deluded on the matter and thus of course use rates can only go up.

On the positive side, truthful education is many times more cost effective than false propaganda.  Millions of dollars on effective and truthful drug education can easily defeat billions spent on spreading lies.  But right now the balance is heavily weighed on the pothead side.  There's no easy money in keeping kids off drugs, but there is certainly easy money in legalised drugs.  And while long term a drug free society is in everyone's best interests - financially too - the kind of people trying to make a quick buck making drug addicts aren't concerned about that.

So while hardcore vegans may be amusing to make fun of, for their over the top moralising and easy triggering, they are mostly harmless fun.  The 420 crowd though, they are basically vegans who are actually trying to murder your children.

Note: I thought I better suffix this, that these views are my own and not those of Drug Free Ambassadors, which is an entirely educational organisation and takes no political position on issues beyond promoting for comprehensive drug education to all kids.

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