Well, maybe we shouldn’t go that far. I guess the big debates now will take great pains to dissect what he said, something along the lines of “Marijuana isn’t any worse than alcohol”.
This being a blog and not a reputable news source, and the fact I do this for fun and don’t get paid for it, I don’t feel I should burden myself or you with a bunch of stats that take me a while to search for. So, let’s just say this:
Alcohol is plenty bad and kills a shitload of people, ruins lives, and is toxic for your body.
That being said, I think people should be allowed to drink it. If they want to drink themselves into stupors and pass out watching reruns of Jersey Shore, then fine, it’s their time, their life, and their bodies. Where we have a problem is when people drink and beat their wives, or drive around to see how well they do on the sobriety test, or crash the plane that you’re riding in.
You see, we tried a little thing called prohibition, back in the 20s, which caused us all sorts of problems. The Mafia stepped in, people brewed illegal hooch all over, brought stuff in from outside the country, and generally supplied the people who wanted to drink it. If you were desperate enough you could add some yeast to grape juice and wait a few months. Not the best stuff, but something to drink.
In the words of Popcorn Sutton, “We ain’t tryin’ to make a Rembrandt, we’re just makin’ a little somethin’ to get drunk off of”.
Prohibition was a massive failure, and was repealed a few years down the road, as you should well know by now.
But, Alcohol is plenty bad for you, so saying “Marijuana is no worse than alcohol” really isn’t saying much. It’s likely no worse than tobacco, too. In fact, with the way cigarette companies have manipulated tobacco over the years to produce a plant with higher nicotine to keep you addicted, Marijuana is probably a whole lot better than tobacco.
The thing with Marijuana is, people have to learn to accept it as a drug, just like alcohol. Right now, the potheads want to say it’s “medicine”. Yeah, for the most part I call bullshit on that one. The claims they make about its medicinal properties are so far and wide, you would expect it to be sold out of a wagon by the side of the road.
I get it, it helps people relax. I know people that smoked pot, and they seems damned relaxed. I’ll give you that one.
There’s even proof that it helps epileptics have fewer seizures. Funny thing is, there’s a variety of marijuana with almost NO tetrahydrocannabinol in it that works just fine for this. Tetra…whatever (THC) – is the stuff in pot that gets people high. if you took that out, do you still think that people would be lining up for their “medicine”? I think not.
They need to come right out and say, “Damnit, I want to smoke weed because I just want to smoke weed. Some people drink, some people watch dirty movies, some people gamble. I want to smoke weed.” Quit beating around the pot bush and come out and say it.
But with our government, it always comes down to money. Whether or not marijuana becomes legal depends entirely on money and who can make the most out of it.
I’m sure the cigarette lobby is pushing hard to keep pot illegal. Marijuana legalization is a huge threat to them. Pot is seen (true or not, I don’t know) as less physically addictive. It’s pretty easy to quit weed, from what I understand.
Of course the government will want to tax it. Just like alcohol tax… For example: A quart of 100 proof vodka may cost you $12 at the liquor store. A quart of denatured alcohol, which is essentially 192 proof vodka with enough methanol added to kill you if you drink it, costs you around $3 at the hardware store. Why? Taxes. It’s the same reason it’s legal to brew wine at home, but if you take the water out with a still, they’ll come get you and haul you away. Taxes. Most moonshiners aren’t charged for makin’ shine. They get in trouble for tax evasion. That’s where the money is.
So you’ll have your government approved, taxed marijuana sold by licensed businesses, paying for their business licenses, dolling out the new $15 minimum wage to their employees, collecting payroll taxes (and likely hiring part-time to keep from paying benefits). So, sure, marijuana is legal, but at a price. I don’t see prices going down. When the government gets involved, typically there’s only one way for prices to go, up. Sure, the actual marijuana may be cheaper on a wholesale level, but with taxes and markups for businesses to survive, the price you pay as a pothead will only rise.
But – like the moonshiners still operating in homes and abandoned barns and along mountain streams, there will be the underground marijuana. Legalizing pot won’t suddenly end the drug war, any more than legalizing liquor suddenly put an end to alcohol crime. Moonshine is still prevalent because people want it, people are proud of their craft, their heritage, and some people just like sticking it to “the man”.
There will be the “craft grower”, the guy who grows plants in his barn, or attic, or basement with grow lights. The Mexican cartels will still provide pot, ready to sell through strew level dealers without the government oversight and taxes. The scourge of illicit drug dealing will still take place, maybe on a smaller scale, maybe not.
And of course, new laws will have to be passed. Who gets to grow the Pot? Will Monsanto have a Marijuana branch? GMO pot, designed for this or that effect? After all, selective breeding is too slow, they have to get in there and manipulate genes and play God with nature. It worked for corn, why not Marijuana? Will the government restrict pot to be grown on subsidized marijuana farms, or will it allow anyone to start growing marijuana? Can you smoke it with a child in the house? What about DUI laws? There’s no “test” to tell if you’ve been smoking Marijuana right before getting in your car, or three days ago.
So, just saying, “Marijuana is legal!” will never solve a host of problems.
The funniest thing, however, was Obama saying, “But, I don’t want my daughters using it.”
So, it’s no worse than alcohol, unless it is HIS kid. Hmmmm…