Monday, October 18, 2010

Legalize It!

For all the awful choices in the upcoming elections, one good thing may happen in California. Marijuana, reefer, ganja, cheeba, weed, pot, hemp, molta, is finally up for legalization with Ballot Proposition 19. Prop 19 seeks to legalize pot, recommending turning it into a profit center for the government through taxes and legal control. While I believe pot should be legal for the simple reason that it is an entertaining herb arguably less toxic than alcohol or tobacco, if this economic approach works then so be it. Fascinatingly and tellingly, the greatest special interest behind efforts to oppose Prop 19 has been the alcohol industry, not eager for possibly cheaper and less centralized mind-altering entertainment. I'm sure ultimately business will find a way to coopt and commercialize pot, and that will be sad; but better that than the dangerous and utterly hypocritical status weed has today.

The illegality of recreational drugs has been the gift that keeps on giving for the international narco-terrorist empire, corrupt police, and the forces of repression. The so-called war on drugs has been an utterly stupid waste of money, life and civil liberties. While there are chemical drugs that should probably remain controlled just like health-giving presciption chemical drugs are, marijuana is widely recognized to have therapeutic qualities. And not that I am admitting to any illegal activity, but smoking weed is -- reputed to be -- good clean wholesome fun, making everything from social interaction, bad television, complicated music, sexual encounters, and junk food a hell of a lot more fun. Legalizing pot and narcotics would undercut many of the world's most dangerous criminals, sure, but it would also help stressed out people across this stressed out country lighten up a little.

While pot has been widely decriminalized in recent years, it's time to just legalize it. California is hopefully leading the way with this upcoming referendum. While predictably--and stupidly--the Obama justice department is suggesting it will continue to persecute federal drug laws in California, our nation's politicians, who smoke weed behind closed doors just like everybody else does, need to listen to their heads and stop their foolishness.

Again I'm quoting the immortal Grace Slick: "Feed your head."

Yes on 19 in California; legalize it nationwide!


  1. You give me faith in the ...ahem... more age-advanced people in this country, ish.

    I do not like to smoke pot. Sure I've done it. Most people have, but the taste and smell just aren't something I enjoy. I've always enjoyed alcohol more.

    But for what it's worth, someone's decision to smoke a completely harmless plant is none of my business. Study after study has confirmed that marijuana carries no isolated risk for addiction, and that a 'lethal' dose is physical impossible to intake (estimated at roughly 400 ounces, fully smoked and inhaled, in one hour, which is less lethal than carrots).

    So, YES on Prop 19, and legalize it nationally! Because just like I can drink 40s in my apartment for no good reason, or get hammered on vodka at the bar for no good reason, I should be allowed to inhale smoke from a burning plant for no good reason.

    This is COMPLETELY unrelated, ish, but I am heading to NYC soon for a conference and I have some spare time. What are some of your favorite digging spots up there? I'd love to check out the NY scene some more. Thanks!

  2. Touche, freebones, on your opening line!

    As for NYC, well, the sad truth is that I am hopelessly out of touch with the live music scene in NYC. Are you looking for jazz in particular?

  3. oh, not much the live scene, but the crate-digging scene. do you still haunt any record shops with fun crates to dig through?

    dustygroove, for example, is on my list for travel out west, as is a revisit to san fran's fantastic rasputin records shop.

  4. Dustygroove didn't exist when I lived in Chicago but I visited it when I went back there a few years ago. GREAT store.

    Record stores in NYC have been closing like people like me, I suppose, become internet consumers. The East Village still has a bunch--Other Music for new stuff--used shops here and there. I think there's some in Williamsburg Brooklyn also. My faves are all gone!