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The Criminalization of Nitrous Oxide is No Laughing Matter

an open letter to the Drug Policy Alliance

by Ballard Quass, the Drug War Philosopher

March 22, 2023

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.

Best Wishes

Brian Quass

Nitrous Oxide: Possession of laughing gas to be criminal offence"

Next essay: Declaration of Independence from the War on Drugs
Previous essay: Night of the Addicted Americans

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Some Tweets against the hateful war on drugs

Until we legalize ALL psychoactive drugs, there will be no such thing as an addiction expert. In the meantime, it's insulting to be told by neuroscience that I'm an addictive type. It's pathologizing my just indignation at psychiatry's niggardly pharmacopoeia.
Q: Where can you find almost-verbatim copies of the descriptions of religious experiences described by William James? A: In descriptions of user reports of "trips" on drugs ranging from coca to opium, from MDMA to laughing gas.
Unfortunately, the prohibitionist motto is: "Billions for arrest, not one cent for education." To the contrary, drug warriors are ideologically committed to withholding the truth about drugs from users.
This, by the way, is why we can't just "follow the science." The "acceptable risk" for psychoactive drugs can only be decided by the user, based on what they prioritize in life. Science just assumes that all users should want to live forever, self-fulfilled or not.
ECT is like euthanasia. Neither make sense in the age of prohibition.
More materialist nonsense. "We" are the only reason that the universe exists as a universe rather than as inchoate particles.
Here's one problem that supporters of the psychiatric pill mill never address: the fact that Big Pharma antidepressants demoralize users by turning them into patients for life.
The benefits of entheogens read like the ultimate wish-list for psychiatrists. It's a shame that so many of them are still mounting a rear guard action to defend their psychiatric pill mill -- which demoralizes clients by turning them into lifetime patients.
Amphetamines are "meds" when they help kids think more clearly but they are "drugs" when they help adults think more clearly. That shows you just how bewildered Americans are when it comes to drugs.
I agree that Big Pharma drugs have wrought disaster when used in psychotherapy -- but it is common sense that non-Big Pharma drugs that elate could be used to prevent suicide and obviate the need for ECT.
More Tweets

essays about

Listening to Laughing Gas
Forbes Magazine's Laughable Article about Nitrous Oxide
Keep Laughing Gas Legal
William James rolls over in his grave as England bans Laughing Gas
Speaking Truth to Academia
How the Drug War is Threatening Intellectual Freedom in England
Why the FDA should not schedule Laughing Gas
How AI turned William James into a Drug Warrior

essays about

Drug War Agitprop
How AI turned William James into a Drug Warrior
William James rolls over in his grave as England bans Laughing Gas
Why the FDA should not schedule Laughing Gas
How the Drug War is Threatening Intellectual Freedom in England
Keep Laughing Gas Legal
Listening to Laughing Gas

front cover of Drug War Comic Book

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You have been reading an article entitled, The Criminalization of Nitrous Oxide is No Laughing Matter: an open letter to the Drug Policy Alliance, published on March 22, 2023 on For more information about America's disgraceful drug war, which is anti-patient, anti-minority, anti-scientific, anti-mother nature, imperialistic, the establishment of the Christian Science religion, a violation of the natural law upon which America was founded, and a childish and counterproductive way of looking at the world, one which causes all of the problems that it purports to solve, and then some, visit the drug war philosopher, at (philosopher's bio; go to top of this page)