Guest Blog Vol. 1: The [Absurd] War on Drugs
(2 blogs today)
This blog was written by a buddy. His penname is Herbal Remedy. Here is his sarcastic rant.
We have recently become victim to the cacophony of media noise surrounding the war on drugs, particularly America’s problem with meth. I have some opinions on this topic. We’ve all had this discussion with regard to marijuana – how it’s less of a liability to society than alcohol. This statement is undeniably true in many respects. The worst thing that came out of America’s marijuana problem is obesity and jam bands. (and the snack food companies love it) Fatties love puffing fatties. But back to the topic of meth – is it really the devil it’s made out to be? …and I will be playing devil’s advocate in my following thoughts.
Politicians will argue that drugs are bad not because they are unhealthy for the body, but because they take away peoples’ judgment, morals, and duties. But these officials who are leading the fight against drugs are essentially forgetting about their duties. So meth is the new crack, which was once the new heroine. (that title now given to pain killers) Apparently this new “crack” is seductively turning fine upstanding Americans into worthless human beings, an airborne virus striking fear into the uninformed.
I’m not arguing that meth isn’t bad – it is indeed a problem for many people in many locales. However, meth use among high school students has remained relatively stable and is starting to decline. As far as meth’s addiction potential, only 5% of
people who try meth become addicted. (Definition of addiction is use 1 time per month – which is an absurd qualification in itself) That addiction rate is higher than heroine (3%), but it’s lower than marijuana (15%), crack (8%), painkillers (10%), or cigarettes (37%). Now let’s talk about alcohol. Among those who have tried alcohol, 60% have had a drink in the last month and 27% have binge drank in the last month. (5 drinks on one occasion defines binge drinking which in relative terms makes me a dysfunctional alcoholic!)
Methamphetamines are nothing new. They were easily available in pill form and sold over the counter until the 50’s. At that point there were still prescribed by doctors for those who wanted to lose weight or stay awake. It was in the 1970’s that home labs started to spring up when authorities cracked down. This very same pattern occurred during Prohibition. Underground distilleries would emerge and people were dying from alcohol poisoning. Prohibition basically caused many people to switch from beer and wine to extremely hard liquor. Yeah, that’s an embarrassing page in America’s history book.
These days, we not only tolerate but embrace alcohol despite the fact that it causes more harm than illegal drugs. Also, because we realize a ban on alcohol is futile –
it would create more problems and societal uprising, taking away what we value so much – booze.
In many ways shutting down meth labs across the country just creates more collateral damage and doesn’t solve the problem because most of it is imported. We are reportedly prosecuting poor convenience store clerks for unknowingly selling cold medication (ingredient in meth) and other legal ingredient products to junkies who are concocting meth in their homes.
Is meth so bad anyway? [said sarcastically] The military is given them for god’s sake. My own stepfather used to be a surgeon in the military many years ago and made “hangover” kits for his fellow soldiers that consisted of methamphetamine pills, coffee, and Tylenol. He said his kits were very popular. Truck drivers are known to take them to stay awake on long trips. I’d sure as hell rather be driving next to a truck driver on meth than a truck driver asleep.