Essay date: May 4, 2021

Jefferson Bashing on

Jefferson bashers throw out the natural-law baby with the bath water, cutting the ground out from under their arguments for individual freedom.

here's something morally pretentious about finding so much fault for a person who, like everyone, was a product of his time, as if the fault finder assumes that he or she will appear faultless 250 years from now when hopefully more enlightened societies than ours will look back upon us and our doings. These critics of past heroes would do well to remember that their own replacement heroes will be subject to the same jaundiced critique that they are now reserving for their enemies. If they dubiously equate Jefferson with Hitler, then it won't be long before their philosophical enemies will be making an equally plausible case against Malcolm X and Al Sharpton, in part by speculating how the diatribes of the latter pundit may have led to the torching of a Jewish business in New York City. But mainly I'm talking about the protestor in the mirror. When we condemn past wrongs, we should have a little humility, since we're surely perpetrating our own terrible wrongs that will only be clear to society 250 years from today.

Take the Drug War, for instance: it is a violation of the Natural Law upon which Jefferson founded America, and it is the establishment of the Christian Science religion. Yet no one who's ranting today about Jefferson seems to have any problem with the Drug War, this Drug War that is causing a civil war in Mexico, empowering a self-proclaimed Drug War Hitler in the Philippines, and militarizing local police forces so that they can kick down your door and punch your grandmother in the face with impunity, should you yourself be suspected of dealing in plant medicines of which botanically clueless politicians disapprove. And so the Monticello Foundation was happy to sell out the ex-president's Natural Law legacy in 1987 by allowing the DEA to stomp onto the president's estate and confiscate his poppy plants. Natural Law? Who cares? No one would speak up for Jefferson because we wanted to paint him entirely evil and so we renounced the Natural Law legacy that he gave us, a legacy that took hundreds of years to arise from a tortured body politic in England.

And so we "good guys" of the 21st century still dutifully urinate for billionaire LSD-using employers and see no problem with a Drug War that makes Christian Science the law of the land -- this Drug War that first taught police to treat suspects like scumbags, this unprecedented superstitious demonization of amoral substances, this Drug War that is just the modern version of Columbus telling the Taino people to give up psychoactive mushrooms in favor of the shabby Western drug called alcohol. Of course, Columbus rendered the whole matter moot by simply killing the tribes in question. So if Jefferson-haters want to see the bad guys of 250 years from now, the majority of us need only look in the mirror: for there they will see a Drug War collaborator who was failing to this very day to speak up for Jefferson's natural law, duped as they were by Drug War lies and censorship and focused as they were on "calling out" the dead, and so religious liberty and natural law have disappeared from the American republic while we pat ourselves on the back for being so much more moral than past generations.

If you doubt that religious liberty has disappeared, just try to start a stateside church that uses a plant like psychoactive mushrooms to achieve enlightenment in the same manner that the Vedic religion used soma, and you'll have the DEA breaking down your door before you can shout, "Natural Law!" But don't expect them to listen to you. After all, you've renounced the Natural Law legacy that alone could have forced the religious-banning Christian Science government to cease and desist.

June 7, 2022

Thomas Jefferson was not without his faults, and yet he was the sine qua non of black emancipation. It was his ideas about equality that made it impossible for the US to maintain slavery in the long run, since slavery so obviously clashed with the idea that "all men are created equal." He wanted to be much more explicit about this in his Declaration of Independence, but too many of his southern colleagues said no, for they rightly intuited that such language would spell the eventual end of slavery itself as an American institution. Unfortunately, Jefferson would go on to make the limits of his understanding all too clear in his Notes on Virginia, in which he blames the "Negroes" as a class for all the shortcomings that were so obviously a result of slavery itself. Americans and their colonial forebears had brought a people over from Africa against their will, made it criminal for them to read and to otherwise advance themselves in life, and then these same Americans had the hypocritical nerve to blame these Negroes for being unread and uncultivated? The reasoning is so obviously flawed that it's disappointing to think that Jefferson was ever persuaded by it. But God help us all when we ourselves are eventually judged by the standards of a future, more enlightened age -- one in which everyone will clearly see the utter folly of demonizing Mother Nature's bounty rather than using it for the benefit of humans and humankind. Then those who stayed silent about the Drug War and dutifully urinated for their employers (while yet anachronistically demonizing Thomas Jefferson on sites like will be found to be complicit in a minority-killing Drug War -- a war on plant medicine which resulted in the deaths of over 800 blacks in Chicago alone in 2021.

June 10, 2022

Yet even reform-friendly politicians want to end the Drug War gradually at best. One can't help but ask the following question then: If 800-plus well-to-do white Americans were killed every year in Chicago by violence provoked by prohibition, and there were similar death tolls in other big cities around the country, would politicians be pussyfooting about and hemming and hawing about making change? Au contraire, they would call a special session of Congress at once to end the Drug War right this very instant, thank you very much, so that America could begin pursuing a new rational substance policy, one that does not depend on violence-causing prohibition.

Next essay: The Christian Science SWAT Teams of the Drug War
Previous essay: How the Drug War Banned my Religion

More Essays Here

end America's disgraceful drug war: visit to learn more

No Drug War Keychains

The key to ending the Drug War is to spread the word about the fact that it is Anti-American, unscientific and anti-minority (for starters)

Monticello Betrayed Thomas Jefferson

By demonizing plant medicine, the Drug War overthrew the Natural Law upon which Jefferson founded America -- and brazenly confiscated the Founding Father's poppy plants in 1987, in a symbolic coup against Jeffersonian freedoms.

This is your Brain on Godsend Plant Medicine

Stop the Drug War from demonizing godsend plant medicines. Psychoactive plant medicines are godsends, not devil spawn.

The Drug War Censors Science

Scientists: It's time to wake up to the fact that you are censored by the drug war. Drive the point home with these bumper stickers.

old time radio playing Drug War comedy sketches

You have been reading essays by the Drug War Philosopher, Brian Quass, at Brian is the founder of The Drug War Gift Shop, where artists can feature and sell their protest artwork online. He has also written for Sociodelic and is the author of The Drug War Comic Book, which contains 150 political cartoons illustrating some of the seemingly endless problems with the war on drugs -- many of which only Brian seems to have noticed, by the way, judging by the recycled pieties that pass for analysis these days when it comes to "drugs." That's not surprising, considering the fact that the category of "drugs" is a political category, not a medical or scientific one.

A "drug," as the world defines the term today, is "a substance that has no good uses for anyone, ever, at any time, under any circumstances" -- and, of course, there are no substances of that kind: even cyanide and the deadly botox toxin have positive uses: a war on drugs is therefore unscientific at heart, to the point that it truly qualifies as a superstition, one in which we turn inanimate substances into boogie-men and scapegoats for all our social problems.

The Drug War is, in fact, the philosophical problem par excellence of our time, premised as it is on a raft of faulty assumptions (notwithstanding the fact that most philosophers today pretend as if the drug war does not exist). It is a war against the poor, against minorities, against religion, against science, against the elderly, against the depressed, against those in pain, against children in hospice care, and against philosophy itself. It outlaws substances that have inspired entire religions, Nazifies the English language and militarizes police forces nationwide.

It bans the substances that inspired William James' ideas about human consciousness and the nature of ultimate reality. In short, it causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, meanwhile violating the Natural Law upon which Thomas Jefferson founded America. (Surely, Jefferson was rolling over in his grave when Ronald Reagan's DEA stomped onto Monticello in 1987 and confiscated the founding father's poppy plants.)

If you believe in freedom and democracy, in America and around the world, please stay tuned for more philosophically oriented broadsides against the outrageous war on godsend medicines, AKA the war on drugs.

Brian Quass
The Drug War Philosopher

PS The drug war has not failed: to the contrary, it has succeeded, insofar as its ultimate goal was to militarize police forces around the world and help authorities to ruthlessly eliminate those who stand in the way of global capitalism. For more, see Drug War Capitalism by Dawn Paley.

Rather than apologetically decriminalizing selected plants, we should be demanding the immediate restoration of Natural Law, according to which "The earth, and all that is therein, is given to men for the support and comfort of their being." (John Locke)

Selected Bibliography

  • Bandow, Doug "From Fighting The Drug War To Protecting The Right To Use Drugs"2018
  • Barrett, Damon "Children of the Drug War: Perspectives on the Impact of Drug Polices on Young People"2011 IDEBATE Press
  • Bilton, Anton "DMT Entity Encounters: Dialogues on the Spirit Molecule"2021 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Boullosa , Carmen "A Narco History: How the United States and Mexico Jointly Created the 'Mexican Drug War'"2016 OR Books
  • Brereton, William "The Truth about Opium / Being a Refutation of the Fallacies of the Anti-Opium Society and a Defence of the Indo-China Opium Trade"2017 Anna Ruggieri
  • Burns, Eric "1920: The year that made the decade roar"2015 Pegasus Books
  • Carpenter, Ted Galen "The Fire Next Door: Mexico's Drug Violence and the Danger to America"2012 Cato Institute
  • Chesterton, GK "Saint Thomas Acquinas"2014 BookBaby
  • Filan, Kenaz "The Power of the Poppy: Harnessing Nature's Most Dangerous Plant Ally"2011 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Griffiths, William "Psilocybin: A Trip into the World of Magic Mushrooms"2021 William Griffiths
  • Hofmann, Albert "The Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Plants: Ethnopharmacology and Its Applications"2005 Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Irwin-Rogers, Keir "Illicit Drug Markets, Consumer Capitalism and the Rise of Social Media: A Toxic Trap for Young People"2019
  • James, William "The Varieties of Religious Experience"1902 Philosophical Library
  • Mariani, Angelo "Coca and its Therapeutic Application, Third Edition"1896
  • Mortimer MD, W. Golden "Coca: Divine Plant of the Incas"2017 Ronin Publishing
  • Partridge, Chiristopher "Alistair Crowley on Drugs"2021 uploaded by Misael Hernandez
  • Rudgley, Richard "The Encyclopedia of Psychoactive Substances"2014 Macmillan Publishers
  • Shulgin, Alexander "PIHKAL: A Chemical Love Story"1991 Transform Press
  • Shulgin, Alexander "The Nature of Drugs Vol. 1: History, Pharmacology, and Social Impact"2021 Transform Press
  • Smith, Wolfgang "Cosmos and Transcendence: Breaking Through the Barrier of Scientistic Belief"0
  • Smith, Wolfgang "Physics: A Science in Quest of an Ontology"2022
  • St John, Graham "Mystery School in Hyperspace: A Cultural History of DMT"2021
  • Szasz, Thomas "Interview With Thomas Szasz: by Randall C. Wyatt"0
  • Wedel, Janine "Unaccountable: How the Establishment Corrupted Our Finances, Freedom and Politics and Created an Outsider Class"2014 Pegasus Books
  • Weil, Andrew "From Chocolate to Morphine: Everything You Need to Know About Mind-Altering Drugs"2004 Open Road Integrated Media
  • Site and its contents copyright 2023, by Brian B. Quass, the drug war philosopher at For more information, contact Brian at