Essay date: May 12, 2021

Join Philosophers Against the Drug War

 Fight the politically motivated demonization of substances.  Fight the enforcement of Christian Science as the world's religion. Fight the Drug War!

his Blog is part of my ongoing attempt to wake the world from the violent man-made nightmare called the Drug War. It is different from all other anti-Drug War blogs and websites in that it does not appeal to statistics to make its points. Rather, it appeals to first principles, or, in other words, it approaches the matter philosophically. This is important, because inductive arguments and statistics can always be gainsaid by racist politicians seeking to maintain a corrupt status quo. In fact, that's why we've been saddled with this corrupt policy of childish substance demonization for over 100 years now. Even the best thinkers are merely using statistics to point out that the Drug War is a "failure," when the reality is that the Drug War had no right to succeed in the first place in a free country, being as it is a violation of Natural Law and the adoption of Christian Science as a state -- and indeed a world -- religion. But when we confront these same scheming politicians by revealing the false, bigoted and colonialist assumptions upon which the Drug War is based, they can't hide their malignant idiocy behind misleading statistics and lies. The only way they can save face is to ignore such arguments completely, and with your help, they won't be able to do that.

What are the philosophical truths with which we fight the Drug War? The truly philosophical thinker is spoiled for choice in compiling such a list. But some of the biggies include...

1) The Drug War is the enforcement of the metaphysical principles of Christian Science (the idea that humans have some moral obligation to go without "drugs") and it therefore represents the unconstitutional establishment of a religion.

2) The Drug War is a violation of the Natural Law upon which Thomas Jefferson founded America, since as John Locke himself wrote, human beings have a natural right to "the use of the land and all that lies therein." Indeed, God himself looked at the plants and fungi that he had created on Earth and said (in the book of Genesis, no less) that it was good.

3) The Drug War represents a warped way of viewing the world, one in which we ascribe substance misuse not to social forces (such as poverty, a lack of education and to prohibition itself) but rather to the substances themselves, ridiculously claiming, in fact, that some substances are so evil that they cannot even be studied by scientists in a supposedly free democratic country.

4) The Drug War is anti-scientific, therefore, since it forbids scientists from studying many of the psychoactive plant medicines of which politicians disapprove. This is the moral equivalent of the Church limiting the scientific freedom of Galileo. The only difference is that Galileo knew that his researches were being limited by an anti-scientific oppressor, whereas scholars today completely ignore the way that the Drug War limits their inquiries (into things like the tractability of depression and the best ways for treating addiction -- or even into studies of consciousness). This failure to acknowledge the Drug War's emasculating impact on scientific research helps keep the Drug War alive by rendering its pernicious influence invisible to all but the most perceptive minds.

5) The Drug War is anti-patient, since it criminalizes, a priori, a vast array of potentially godsend medicines which, when used responsibly and empathically, show great promise for fighting depression and giving the mentally challenged a brand-new way of looking at the world, something that one might have thought of as the holy grail of psychiatry. Moreover, this criminalization is undertaken by politicians who have no expertise in pharmacology and seemingly zero knowledge of our species' time-honored interest in expanding the mind with psychoactive medicine for both religious and practical purposes.

6) The Drug War is anti-minority, since it creates a violent black market that thrives in poor and poorly educated regions. Even the decriminalization of marijuana has racist overtones in a Drug Warrior society, since by failing to decriminalize cocaine as well (derived from a natural substance that Freud himself considered a godsend) we continue to cage Black Americans for dealing in substances of which politicians disapprove, while meanwhile ensuring that the increasingly "White person's drug," marijuana, is legalized. This double-standard is not surprising, however, since all the original Drug War laws were designed to marginalize minorities -- and not the supposedly good and upstanding White Americans who were in charge of creating these racially motivated drug laws in the first place.

If you can sign off on these basic truths -- if you realize that the term "drugs" is a modern invention by racists and Christian Scientists to unscientifically demonize substances -- then join us. If you realize that the Drug War thrives on dogmatically ignoring the cosmic and creative insights that psychoactive substances can provide the artist and the humanitarian, then join us. If you realize that a human being should be judged by the contents of their character, not by the contents of their digestive system, then join us.

What are the goals of this blog? To...

1) Rally philosophers (credentialed or otherwise) against the Drug War

2) Encourage ACTIONS such as...
a. Writing letters to Drug War-influenced authors and playwrights
b. Writing comments on IMDB etc. condemning implicit Drug War propaganda in movies
c. Writing letters to any congressperson who seems to have been bamboozled by Drug War lies, which, in practice (alas), means every single congressperson

3) Plan other peaceful on-site actions that will help speed the demise of America's unprecedented Christian Science war on plant medicine, aka the Drug War -- like how about a protest outside of DEA headquarters where we hand out books and pamphlets revealing the idiocy of America's Christian Science War on Plant Medicine -- a crucial protest, indeed, considering that America has now turned its jaundiced views of psychoactive medicine into the law of the entire world, to the extent that we even send armies abroad to burn plants, in an act of superstitious colonialist tyranny reminiscent of the book burners in Fahrenheit 451. (How about a protest outside of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime? Or at Monticello, to protest how the Monticello Foundation betrayed Thomas Jefferson's Natural Law legacy in 1987 by allowing the DEA on his estate to confiscate the ex-president's poppy plants!)

4) Encourage the use of comment forms to push back against the endless instances of muddled reasoning that the Drug Warrior displays online in zine articles, academic papers, movie and TV show reviews, and everyday musings.

5) Remind the world that there is no problem with substances, nor has there ever been -- but rather there's a huge problem with how modern societies think about and deal with substances. If plant medicine causes problems in a capitalist society, then there is a problem with capitalism, not "drugs."

My goal, in short, is to hasten not simply the end of the Drug War, but the end of the childish and tyrannical way of thinking about the world that the Drug War represents. For there are no such things as "drugs" in the way that Drug Warriors use the term. There are no substances that are somehow bad in and of themselves and that must be banned from even the science lab. Instead, every substance in the world can be used for good or ill, and a smart and free country studies those substances to enlighten their people about best practices for use, rather than ahistorically declaring -- through censorship and blatant lies about "brain-frying drugs" -- that substances can only be used for evil purposes once they have been demonized by pharmacologically clueless politicians.

Incidentally, if any substances fry the brain, they are the SSRIs to which 1 in four American women are addicted even as I type. Such drugs tamp down the emotions and have been shown to conduce to anhedonia in long-term users. I know this from 60 years of hard-earned, expensive, and demoralizing experience as just one cog in the psychiatric pill mill. Of course, to the Drug Warrior mind, this is somehow not a problem -- indeed it is actually a good thing according to the Drug Warrior, who patronizingly reminds folks like myself to keep taking our nice-sounding "meds" (which is the Drug Warrior antonym for "drugs," of course)... a fact that reveals the fathomless politically and financially motivated hypocrisy of the war on plant medicine, aka the war on drugs. None of this is about public safety, of course: otherwise the Drug Warrior would not tolerate the pill mill -- nor would they support politically motivated prohibition policies that are causing a civil war in Mexico even as we speak while empowering a self-proclaimed Drug War Hitler in the Philippines.

Join today: contact to join this site and add to the discussion -- and action!

Related tweet: November 10, 2022

I wonder if the editors address the fact that our government has outlawed precisely those psychoactive medicines whose use suggests that consciousness is all around us, like in the Mayan symbols I saw on a peyote "trip." So many academics reckon without the Drug War.

Author's Follow-up: November 10, 2022

I wrote the above in response to a tweet from Wiley Philosophy (@philosophersEye) that publicized a collection of essays on 'Consciousness.' This is just my first salvo in a new campaign I'm launching to call out the many academics who reckon without the Drug War, who pretend that they are living in a free country and therefore fail to properly note the way that their researches have been hamstrung by government propaganda.

Next essay: Scientism and America's Drug War hypocrisy
Previous essay: Why Drug Free Zones are Dangerous and Unconstitutional

More Essays Here

essays about

The Drug War as a Litmus Test for Philosophical Wisdom
The Philosophical Idiocy of the Drug War
The Philosophy of Drug Use
The Philosophy of Getting High
Without Philosophy, Science becomes Scientism
Materialism and the Drug War
Calling All Philosophers
Critique of the Philosophy of Happiness
Heidegger on Drugs
In Praise of Thomas Szasz
Libertarians as Closet Christian Scientists
Majoring in Drug War Philosophy
Rationality Uber Alles
Scientism and America's Drug War hypocrisy
Speaking Truth to Academia
Nietzsche and the Drug War
What if Arthur Schopenhauer Had Used DMT?
How Scientific Materialism Keeps Godsend Medicines from the Depressed
Psychedelics and Depression
Drug Use as Self-Medication
John Locke on Drugs
Puritanical Assumptions about Drug Use in the Entertainment Field
Why Kevin Sabet is Wrong
I asked 100 American philosophers what they thought about the Drug War

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