The War on Drugs and the Legalization of Drugs

Another one from Cassidy:


Everyone does "drugs": Ibuprofen, coffee, tea, nasal decongestant, viagra, pain killers, sleeping pills, anti-depressants... drugs that powerfully affect our lives.

Should the government be in the position to prevent us from taking drugs deemed "harmful", or is the government turning this into more of a problem than it is? Are they mistaken?

Are psychedelics a medicine for the soul? Is the fear of drugs actually based on our fear of stereotypes? Or, to reverse the question, why are we so afraid of drugs? Why is it socially acceptable in America to drink coffee all day and alcohol on the weekends?

"Pot is for jobless Mexicans, opium is for lazy Chinese, cocaine is for violent blacks, psychedelics are for dirty hippies, ecstasy is for punks/club-goers, painkillers is for those on welfare"

In the eyes of clean-cut, 9-5, white Americans living the American Dream, these are people who do not contribute to the country, instead "draining" the system and setting a poor influence on children."

The war on drugs hasn't improved since the 60's, and in some ways it has worsened and become more ridiculous. Is it a lost cause?

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  • Susan M.

    I agree with Katherine that we all seemed to have different "facts" or no facts at all. I feel mostly that I can only share thoughts and feelings based on experience. We may think we know facts but those are always subject to change and there are so many of them! Facts are very contradicting. If I'm honest I can only share what I feel and experience. I think if we put all our experience together and share our feelings, it makes for a more profound conversation. In doing that, we learn more about ourselves and others, as a result. Anyway, when I leave the group I feel I have more understanding than facts in hand!

    July 1, 2013

  • Katherine L M.

    I felt emphasis was skewed to alcohol and would have preferred more info about the effects/side-effects/prohibitions/reasons for prohibitions of some other drugs. Agree with those who said we as a group appeared not to have sufficient knowledge to discuss well. An aside, meant to be humorous: I disagree with Beth. I drink because I like the taste; the comfort zone is quite secondary.

    June 30, 2013

  • Sherrie F.

    Have a work "social." Good topic though, sorry to miss it.

    June 28, 2013

  • Matt G.

    Is 95 Summit Street the library, or the building next door?

    June 26, 2013

    • jon b.

      The library, on the 3rd floor

      June 26, 2013

  • Leah S.

    Can't make this one, I'll be out of town. Next time!

    June 26, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    We have been trying to find ways to alter our minds since time immemorial, sometimes to expand experience and sometimes to close it off. Even little kids find ways to shake up their experience, e.g., by twirling until they are so dizzy they can't stand up. Society judges a lot of mind expanding drug use negatively because thinking outside the box by definition threatens the status quo. An unfortunate consequence is that consequently we miss opportunities for positive uses. For example, LSD has been shown in clinical trials on the terminally ill to be very helpful in easing the transition between life and death, perhaps by heightening awareness of the transient nature and interconnectedness of all things.

    1 · June 25, 2013

  • Susan M.

    Is the war on drugs a systematic way of targeting minorities? How about a moratorium on war and a place at the table for everyone instead. Anyway the war on drugs disposes of people who could potentially benefit society if given half the chance. Recent American presidents: Clinton, Bush, Obama... smoked and/or inhaled pot but weren't arrested. Perhaps if they had been, their political careers would never have happened. What, in fact, are the differences between using illegal and legal drugs except for the potential to be punished for using illegal ones. Anyway, so far the war on drugs hasn't seemed to benefit society as a whole.

    June 23, 2013

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