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So why the hell are some drugs illegal?

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Why are some drugs illegal when compared to what IS legal. Alcohol
destroys lives, bodies and families year in year out. I see people on
crack and heroin smacked out being a burden on society, then I go off to
a rave, and see these people all dressed up in fantastic colours,
displaying a newfound love for man and life. The same people you see
going to work every day of the year, taking very few sick days, and
establishing quite a normal and high profile career for themselves.
Software developers have been fed mescaline, off the record of course, and the guys who developed the technology making the desktop PC processor available
today, were tripped out of their minds on acid. So all this taken into
consideration, why do the authorities continue to feed us lies, such as
"MAN GREW BREASTS FROM MARIJUANA" the quite popular claim from the US
government trying to stamp out weed, and continue on their stance, that
chemical mind altering substances can only be used for medicinal
purposes. Why can drugs only be used for medicine and not to have fun,
or to make a person smarter, or see things from a new found perspective?
Please help me I need to know why people are so stuck in
their ways.

Oh this is an excellent excellent question and a very good rant to boot. I'm so pleased you asked this question and brought up this topic because it allows me to type phrases like 'angel dust'; 'goofballs'; 'ecstasy'; 'love trip'; 'purple haze'; 'killer weed'; 'opium eaters' and so on. The realities of addiction may not be that amusing but drug slang, ancient and modern, is incredibly colorful. As well it should be - the use of various drugs and god knows what else to escape, get happy, weird, high, horny, crazy, enlightened, and maniacally sociable has roots in human history that go all the way back to the days when your basic cave guys were sniffing campfire smoke to catch a buzz. Humans love an altered experience and have an indelible attraction to chemical compounds, natural or not, that give them one.

But of course that wasn't your question. You already knew people love to get high. Your question, and an extraordinarily legitimate one at that, was why the hell is society so fucking hypocritical about it then? Specifically, why is something like alcohol legal and a love drug like X against the law? And being the deeply philosophical drug-loving human that you are, you wanted to know why, in a philosophical sense, can't drugs be used for fun stuff instead of having to be relegated to the dreary and expensive realm of 'medicine'?

Okay, the boringly short answers to your questions are: Drugs can be used for 'good times' purposes as well to engender the awe-inspiring freak out with resulting insight or degrading mental breakdown. Obviously they can because millions if not billions of people are doing that on a semi-regular basis right now. You may very well be one of them. Furthermore, there is no force on earth that can prevent the massive ongoing use of drugs by people because they 'just want to.' No law, no army, no edict from heaven, no technological advance. Recreational drug use offers many many benefits and people are going to avail themselves of them even if threatened with repeated anal rape, severe social disapproval, or the prospect of developing a really large, dysfunctional liver.

Meanwhile, the short reason X, LSD, marijuana and so on are illegal is because people who want them to be legal do not spend enough time, money, and effort saying so. This may be because they are otherwise thoroughly busy being high, wasted, buzzed, tripping and fucked up, but whatever the excuse may be this is the short answer. If you want these things legal - say so.

But of course, you don't really want the boring short answer. You want an answer that addresses the staggering duplicity of a society that will spend untold millions of dollars a year advertisng 'The King of Beers' to six-year-olds but makes it illegal for a consenting adult to ingest a little MDMA during a festive social gathering of like-minded adults who share a similar taste in music and the desire to experience an enhanced, if temporary, sense of love for all mankind.

Your keen perceptiveness on this topic is shown by the phrasing of your final question - which poignantly asks why people are so stuck in their ways. You have hit the nail right on the head. The current situation in our society, or any other society, is the result of people being stuck in their ways. But why? why, why, why? or alternatively - WHY!!!!!?????

I have to admit this is a question that puzzled the webmistress for many years about society in general. For decades, from her years as a tiny ranting tot to the majestic mental maturity of decrepit adulthood, the webmistress was forced to contemplate the irrationality of society with no defensive weapon greater than bewildered, opinionated petulance. Why, she asked, much as you do.

The puzzling disconnect and clear lack of sense regarding drug policy particularly intrigued her. She lives in a country which forces schoolchildren to take Ritalin if they bounce in their chairs, pushes Zoloft on them if they get a piece of dust in their eye and shed a momentary tear, routinely kills its senior citizens by overprescribing drugs until the fucking side effects KO them, spends millions of dollars convincing you to ask your doctor for cholesterol-lowering drugs that will eat your liver and yet have no proven value in extending your life, gives teenagers meds that make them kill themselves, has prescribed antiobiotics like candy until lethal flesh-eating bacteria are evolving like a 21st century plague, has a Starbucks on every fucking corner, sells more Viagra than books, is dumping chemicals in the water and food until you can grow breasts from drinking tap water or eating a hamburger there are so many hormones and yet - yet it has a fucking hissy fit if someone with incurable fucking cancer smokes a goddamn joint! And so on and so forth. Hopefully that was suitably outraged.

And yet, with all this outrage, what did the webmistress do? She was reduced to making long distance phone calls to her sister so the two of them could, for some unknown reason, entertain themselves uselessly for hours on end by repeatedly expressing the opinion that marijuana ought to be legal and certain politicians should not. These discussions were remarkably cogent, convincing, and clear-headed given the fact that neither the webmistress nor her sister actually use marijuana because it like makes them paranoid and shit and also for some reason they get a heart palpitation thing going which is kind of creepy. These discussions were entertaining to all who could hear them because these sisters-in-arms would randomly make up facts to support their position, much as I just did above - which is always fun.

Fun - yes, enlightening - no. After many hours of fruitless discussion the webmistress was no closer to an answer than before. All she could think, cynically, was that the government must be motivated by greed. But even that didn't make sense. The taxation of and regulation of pot, MDMA, peyote, mushrooms, cocaine and so forth would be a profitable source of funds for government and advertisers. Besides, the treatment of drugs historically is just so odd. Coffee was illegal in Europe for a time, and so was chocolate. Yet, if urban legend is to be believed, cocaine was once an ingredient in that most refreshing of beverages, Coca-Cola. The United States went to all the trouble to pass a goddamn constitutional amendment to ban the consumption of alcohol and yet Prohibition was such a disaster that the amendment had to be repealed. Yet morphine was once so common it was like a home remedy. Tobacco and coffee have both been at times more valuable than gold. And the number one beverage in the entire world is tea - tea! Tea is a powerful drug in and of itself, not to mention addictive. MDMA was not illegal when it was first synthesized and was studied as a medical aid for a variety of ailments. LSD was used for research purposes and to treat schizophrenia. The list of oddities goes on and on. The relentless human search for new drugs (witness Red Bull and athletic doping scandals) continues unabated, but so does the relentless effort of society to ban things. A sorely trying puzzle indeed.

And then the webmistress saw the light. Now she understands why society is so weird, why people are stuck in their ways, and more or less, what if anything can be done about it.

And now - in a one-time only special offer, the webmistress is willing to share her enlightenment with you, the eager public, for the extremely nominal charge of absolutely nothing - that's right, this information is free and worth every penny!


Now you too can see the light - which may or may not completely depress you....


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