The Criminalization of Nitrous Oxide is No Laughing Matter
an open letter to the Drug Policy Alliance
hannel 5 UK recently interviewed Niamh Eastwood (Executive Director of Release) and Dr. David Nicholl (NHS neurologist) about the perceived need to criminalize the use of laughing gas.
Although the guests were diplomatic, the presenter was goading them on to admit what to her was an obvious conclusion: namely, that laughing gas must be outlawed to protect "our children."
Whenever biased coverage of this kind occurs, DPA should send complaint letters to station management, just as it now sends protest letters to Congress.
The letter would point out that "our children" are not the only stakeholders in the prohibition game. What about the rights of the hundreds of millions of the depressed to godsend treatment? What about philosophers who want to follow up on the work of William James, whose use of laughing gas inspired his entire philosophy? What about the rights of minorities in inner cities to be free from random gunfire?
The protest letter would continue with some more stubbornly ignored Drug War home truths, such as the following:
Drug prohibition has destroyed the rule of law in Central America, militarized police forces around the world, created "no-go" zones in inner cities, and censored scientists. News organizations should be taught to remember this before ignorantly championing a drug control policy that has killed millions and facilitated the election of fascists, even in the United States, by disfranchising millions of minority voters.
Even if "our children" were the only stakeholders in the drug game, the answer in a free society would be to educate them about all psychoactive substances, rather than to proceed down the murderous and anti-scientific road of prohibition.
Such letters should then be endorsed by DPA members and shipped to station management at Channel 5 -- and to every other station and network which (wittingly or otherwise) promotes drug-war hysteria by ignoring the seemingly endless downsides of prohibition.
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