ombatting the Drug War is like peeling an onion. Each of the Drug Warrior's harebrained assumptions turns out to be based on yet other harebrained assumptions, which have to be identified in their turn if one is to have any hope of convincing the mind-muddled masses, who continue to follow the logic-challenged ghost of Richard Nixon like he's the Pied Piper of Drug-Free Hamelin.
Take the following drug-war proposition, for instance:
"Substances should be illegal if they are subject to misuse."
What nonsense. Should driving be illegal because that privilege can be abused?
The Drug Warrior thinks that's a bad analogy, of course, but only because they fail to recognize that mother nature's pharmacy is the birth right of all residents of planet Earth and that the so-called drugs it contains have been used for religious and psychological purposes for millennia, not just for "getting high" as the Drug Warrior seems to believe. One of the world's first religions was founded around the worship of a psychedelic plant-based substance known as soma. The Eleusinian mysteries lasted 2,000 consecutive years and sharpened the minds of Plato and Cicero. Benjamin Franklin used opium to spur his creativity. HG Wells and Jules Verne swore by Coca Wine in writing their famous stories. Francis Crick used liberal amounts of psychedelic to think "outside the box," and thus he discovered the DNA helix. It's only in the suspicious and parochial mind of Drug Warriors like Richard Nixon that we associate psychoactive substances exclusively with riffraff -- by which we generally mean those ethnic groups that the Drug Warrior hates. Thus opium was outlawed because it was associated with the Chinese, just as cocaine was outlawed for its association with blacks, and marijuana for its association with Mexicans.
Yet we still say that "Substances should be illegal if they are subject to misuse"?
I don't know how the Drug Warrior can make that statement with a straight face, given the fact that more than 1 in 8 American males are chemically addicted to modern antidepressants and 1 in 4 American females -- and these drugs can be harder to quit than heroin - Yet the average Drug Warrior has absolutely nothing to say about that fact. It's an addiction problem that the APA (the American Psychiatric Association) and Big Pharma "hush up" by claiming that these drugs need to be taken for life. That's fine, except that the coalition never started making that claim until the addiction problem was first noticed. Only then did it conveniently occur to the drug pushers in question that these drugs required lifelong administration. What a coup by psychiatrists: they thus rendered lawsuits moot, while casting themselves as the saviors of the patients that they themselves had turned into addicts - not to mention the fact that the shrinks were now guaranteed to have clients for life.
But then under this rationale, we could solve the heroin problem in one fell swoop by announcing that heroin has to be taken for life. Problem solved. If we notice withdrawal symptoms, so what? It just means that the addict hasn't taken his or her daily meds yet. (But don't hold your breath waiting for psychiatry to "sign off" on this corollary to their self-serving logic on addiction.)
Putting aside this corporate-biased hypocrisy, why should the physical and emotional needs of millions of law-abiding Americans be ignored in favor of cracking down on a minority of those who cannot use a substance responsibly? For make no mistake: many currently illegal drugs have positive effects -- as Benjamin Franklin knew about opium, as HG Wells knew about cocaine, and as the American Air Force once knew about amphetamines. As for psychedelics, they have been repeatedly shown to produce the sort of self-critical insight that has been the holy grail of psychiatry for the last 50 years.
And yet we still say:
"Substances should be illegal if they are subject to misuse"?
Drug warriors always try to muddy the water with lies, false premises and newspeak. But there is only one thing that the critics of the Drug War have to know: that is the fact that it was a violation of natural law to criminalize mother nature's bounty in the first place.
But if you Drug War critics want to know more, now hear this:
When viewed closely, you will find that all the so-called drug problems that we claim to be fighting are actually caused by the Drug War itself, by its vindictive and anti-minority criminal penalties, by its willful lies about Mother Nature's plant medicine, and by the fact that it bars us from using all manner of natural godsends that when, used wisely, could provide us with self-insight and happiness while being immensely less addictive than the status quo: that status quo that ironically makes America the most addicted country in the world for all its Drug War posturing -- addicted not to opium, not to cocaine, and not to psychedelics, but rather to Big Pharma meds, pills which doctors even have the nerve to tell us that it's our duty to take every day of our life.
Of course, the moral thing for them to do would be to recognize that they've addicted Americans in droves and to acknowledge and apologize for that glaring and outrageous fact, but since they're determined not to commit professional hari kari, they string Americans along with the myth of their scientific infallibility, a message that Big Pharma keeps spreading on shows like Oprah with the help of the highly paid psychiatrists that they have hired for that purpose.
Since the Drug Warrior thus has no problem with addiction whatsoever, we can only conclude that their real problem is with freedom itself: they don't want Americans to get too much of that, especially when that freedom could lead to the use of plant medicines that help people see through the shortcomings of 21st-century American life, perhaps to the point where they become less-than-perfect consumers from the point of view of the Fortune 500.
September 14, 2022
To put it another way, the Drug Warriors don't want to get America off drugs -- they want to get America on the RIGHT drugs from the point of view of Big Pharma and Wall Street. Julian Buchanan justly refers to this state of affairs as Drug Apartheid.
This is religious tyranny disguised, because the Drug War bans precisely those kinds of medicines that have inspired entire religions in the past, as soma inspired the Vedic-Hindu faith.
Author's Follow-up: October 27, 2022
Here's another thing that Drug Warriors don't want us to know: that even crack cocaine and methamphetamines can be used non-addictively. That's hard for Americans to believe because they have been taught the following lie by Drug Warrior propaganda: that any drug that CAN be used addictively MUST and WILL be used addictively. If that is true, it is only because of a self-fulfilling prophecy caused by the fact that Drug Warriors never educate users how to use substances wisely: instead they focus on arresting folks who dare to use demonized substances at all.
5% of proceeds from the sale of the above product will go toward getting Brian a decent haircut for once. Honestly. 9% will go toward shoes. 50% will go toward miscellaneous. 9% of the remainder will go toward relaxation, which could encompass anything from a spin around town to an outdoor barbecue at Brian's brother's house in Stanardsville (both gas and the ice-cream cake that Brian usually supplies).
You have been reading essays by the Drug War Philosopher, Brian Quass, at abolishthedea.com. 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.
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. Oh, and did I mention that most Drug Warriors these days would never get elected were it not for the Drug War itself, which threw hundreds of thousands of their political opposition in jail? Trump was right for the wrong reasons: elections are being stolen in America, but the number-one example of that fact is his own narrow victory in 2016, which could never have happened without the existence of laws that were specifically written to keep Blacks and minorities from voting. The Drug War, in short, is a cancer on the body politic.
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)
Andrew, Christopher "The Secret World: A History of Intelligence" 2019 Yale University Press
Aurelius, Marcus "Meditations" 2021 East India Publishing Company