he entire drug scheduling system is based on lies. And for at least two reasons:
1) The system tells us that the substances it "rates" have no medical uses whatsoever. But there are no substances of that kind on planet Earth. Virtually every substance in the world has positive uses at some dose, in some circumstance, for some person, at some time. Even cyanide and botox have recognized uses in the medical world. To say otherwise is not simply false, but it's also anti-scientific and anti-patient, since it prevents us from finding positive uses for the drugs in question. That's why America continues to struggle with Alzheimer's, because we outlaw medicines that grow new neurons in the brain, deeming them, a priori, of no medical value. In the age of the Drug War, our medical system is thus based on superstition, not science.
2) What's more, some of the positive uses are extant. They are right before our eyes. Coca puts a spring in one's step and sharpens the mind, as everyone knows, including HG Wells and Jules Verne, who were big fans of Coca Wine. When the DEA tells us there are no good uses for coca, it is therefore making a moral judgment, not a scientific one. It is declaring, along with folks like Mary Baker Eddy, that the best life is one led without "drugs." The scheduling system is thus just a harsh moral code based not on science, but on Christian Science, the religion that tells us that we should say "no" to drugs.
Author's Follow-up: January 4, 2023
And so what if substances have no medical uses? Psychoactive substances have religious uses. Did soma have a medical use? Probably not if you were to ask a materialist. But it inspired the creation of the Vedic religion. Should government have outlawed it? A more pertinent question might be: what new religions is the DEA outlawing in advance by criminalizing the substances that might have otherwise inspired new religions today?
This is why writers like Michael Pollan -- and even Andrew Weil -- are missing the point about "drugs." Both are concerned about the juvenile's potential misuse of substances, as if that's the only concern whatsoever in determining whether drugs should be re-legalized. Drugs should be legalized in order for religious liberty and free science to flourish. If a free world puts white American kids in danger, that's no reason to give up on freedom -- especially since the war that we propose to save them will kill thousands of Mexican children and militarize police forces around the globe, while denying freedom of thought, and hence religious liberty, to billions.
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