Sunday, April 09, 2006

Either Sh** Or Get Off The Pot...

I have decided since Montel Williams, Melissa Etheridge, and many other “superstars” have recently taken the courage to address this issue, perhaps now would be a good time for a little known MS blogger to also weigh in my two cents worth on the subject of Medical Marijuana.

Perhaps you, too, have heard the age-old saying, “Either Sh** or get off the pot”. I’m pretty sure the origin of this saying was not in reference to marijuana, but it seems like a great motto for this issue as well! Frankly, I’m tired of this debate. I’m sick of hearing about congressional meetings, Supreme Court decisions, the DEA, proponent testimonials, and basic drug studies either condoning or flat out denying the efficacy of marijuana and its uses for chronic pain and disease suffers. And because I work in a government job, you’re not going to hear any personal accounts from me swaying your decision to “smoke dope” (as my mother used to call it) or not. I CAN’T give an opinion about the matter because my government has deemed the substance illegal and I represent a tiny branch of that government in making my own livelihood.

What I will say is this: I’m sick of hearing about it. I could go into deep dissertation about the many perils of drug addiction, alcoholism, and the addictive personality. Because of my behavioral science and healthcare background, I’ve seen and learned a lot on these topics over the years…I’ve seen first hand the wretched outcomes of addictions gone badly. But I think in the discussions of Medical Marijuana, we have all missed a major point. And that major point is, CONTROL OF CAPITALISM.

Why is it you suppose this issue cannot be resolved? I have some ideas about why, but my ideas are not necessarily mainstream or popular. Regardless, I’m going to hit you over the head with a few now because I just need to “sh** or get off the pot” here!

The production and sale of cannabis/marijuana is a multi-million dollar business in the United States, in spite of Nancy Reagan’s “Just Say No To Drugs” Campaign (although now I think she’s moved on to stem cell research, but that’s a topic for a later time!). It is produced and sold in an illegal market because our government has decided it is bad for us. Because it is marketed illegally, no one is paying taxes on the product and there is no regulatory control on the safety of it by the FDA. Other than drug enforcement agent’s salaries, no one in our government is currently reaping the financial benefits from this multi-million dollar business, and this boils down to CONTROL.

Now, I know the powers that be are far more knowledgeable of what is “best” for me because I’m just one of many sheep in the flock…a stupid animal needing shepparding, if you will. That’s why we have some of our laws…because we DO sometimes make stupid decisions like throwing back a pint of whiskey, and then thinking it’s OK to get behind the wheel of a car and kill some other innocent driver. We NEED some external controls placed upon us just like we sometimes need parenting. I’ll award a point here for basic controls in law enforcement because I respect the law and its ever-changing interpretations. I see it as a necessary component to protect me from YOU, if nothing else!

The interpretations of the law regarding the use of Medical Marijuana become very murky and gray, however, if we remove the idea the drug could not be used responsibly by the general public, and therefore, not needing strict government CONTROL. The government lets us drink alcohol with only controls on when and where we take it in within the general public…it is not against the law to float your back teeth in booze in your own home. It is only when you step outside your home and begin to interact with society in stupid ways, the government steps in and regulates the CONTROL on your actions.

So if we were to eliminate and/or regulate marijuana like we do alcohol with behavioral laws (which alcohol is an even bigger TAXED money maker in the USA!), why then could this drug not be used responsibly by the “sheep”, and the government relax its anal sphincter about this issue? I think I know why, but at the risk of sounding like a communist, I’ll just say a few words about capitalism and move on. I really don’t need the National Security folks tapping on my door because of a silly blog!

The United States government has yet to figure out a way to get its entitled piece of the pie when it comes to the production and sale of marijuana in the US. It doesn’t condone the drug (yet), so it can’t say it agrees with the use of it (yet). Drug use/abuse is still unfortunately considered a moral affliction in our culture, so this weighs heavily on the minds of our congressmen and women when they are considering their constituent’s votes. It has become a major “Catch 22” for our government…we don’t approve of it, but we want to make our share of money off it just the same, and it’s hard to accomplish both.

If I ruled the world, or just had any say in the workings of government for that matter, I would give our congressmen this piece of advice when considering how to deal with the issue of Medical Marijuana: Think Nevada and prostitution, then turn a blind eye if you must. That state seems to have come to some kind of working compromise between capitalism and moral ground and I don’t hear ANYONE debating their state law on Capitol Hill!

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