Tuesday, January 31, 2012
State of the Drug Culture Address 2012
A lot of time I see drug law reform tossed aside as a "Minor" issue, a "fringe" issue that no one sensible cares about. From the content of this blog, you probably assume that I think it is not a minor issue, and you are motherfucking correct; violent coercion in the name of public health is not a minor issue. But we, the drug using cultures of America, are partially responsible for this attitude because we are the ones who are voting to put a goddamn rope around our own necks.
I concur that it isn't as important as a sound economy, which no one is giving us, and full respect to individual civil liberties, which no one is giving us, or even a secure border, which no one is giving us. But folks, we have fucked ourselves over in the drug culture in several ways. I'll be listing those ways now and telling you what I think some mitigating steps might be.
1) Framing the issue as "Marijuana Legalization" - Folks, the Reefer is my drug of choice too. It is healthier, safer, more fun and more convenient than any other drug. It is a sacred herb for the Healing of the I, a gift from God Almighty to keep Chris By-The-Throat from killing a man a day. But by framing the issue as marijuana legalization only, we are shooting outselves in the foot. Fact is, bad side effects or the lack thereof is not a valid reason to cede control of our dietary intake to a government body. If the effects are predictable, the drug should be on the open market. The choice is yours, not some politician's, but we have shown ourselves willing to cede that choice to them if they'll just let us have our reefer.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Stop making it about reefer and make it about your sovreign rights as a human. Don't compromise. Don't be content with scraps. Don't even frame the issue as relating to drugs-make it about cyberware.
2) Pretending that drug kingpins are heroes - Look, folks, I admire Tony Montana as much as any wannabe rebel fratboy, or maybe less, but we need to stop acting like these men are our friends. They pour shitloads of money into keeping the product illegal to protect their profit margin, and we act like these assholes are robin hood whenever they buy a local family a turkey for Thanksgiving. These are dangerous, ruthless men, and WHEN drug law reform happens, they are going to cause big trouble for us, of the buckets of gore variety.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Grow\cook your own and get ready for war, because these men will make war on you to keep you in their power.
3) Refusing to support the candidate that promises to enact drug law reform due to ideological purity - Right now, this means Ron Paul in the mainstream political arena. You'd be amazed at how many people on various Weed Legalization forums hiss like wet cats when they see an R after someone's name by instinct, and then when you call them on it, they go 'Pffft, if weed was the only thing that mattered.' You stupid motherfucker, weed doesn't matter, but an endless cycle of incarceration and murder to fight the devil weed does matter. It matters a lot, and in case you haven't noticed, our people are being killed.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Swallow your 'Republicans are t3h icky' bias and vote for the candidates that will enact reform. Pick your nits carefully when it comes to what you won't support; remember that the President cannot declare all the things that you hate to be law by kingly decree.
4) Accepting the legitimacy of ill conceived laws - The most maddening thing about drug law in this country is how easy it makes you submit. I mean, first offenses for weed are usually slaps on the wrist if you happen to be white and middle class, so there is no reason to kick up a fuss, no reason to make yourself appear dangerous-just assume the position, ride in the squad car, post your bail and go home. Of course, they can kill you at any time, the threat of murder is always present, but it just feels so formalized, so like a ritual song and dance number, that you don't even have a chance to react when they decide to Jose Guerena your ass into a pulverized sack of lead and bone chips. I'm not saying 'fuck the police comin' straight from the underground' but this law abiding citizen schtick has gotten us nowhere.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Google 'Jury Nullification' and while you are at it, start getting all militant and scary. There is no reason to legitimize the abuses our people are suffering. They should live in fear, not us.
5) Staying at home on the couch - You know who you are, you slack ass stoner. We can't expect the heroin users to get up and do anything, but our substance isn't nearly as crippling and we need to be OUT THERE, KICKING UP A FUSS. Too many of us are afraid to step up, afraid to go to the marches, afraid to go to the protests, maybe because we don't want to lose our jobs, maybe because we don't want to get on the watch list. Fuck that. Get loud. You can't hardly meet a person who thinks drug laws are perfect the way they are yet somehow we are the marginalized minority who gets murdered at will. This is not acceptable.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Set your alarm and go to the protests. Network. Organize. Resist.
6) Focusing on the national level - The sytem is much more malleable at the local level. Letter writing and petitions are much more relevant to the local lawmaker, and of course the local lawmaker is a much softer target for assassination, so these folks will listen to you much more attentively than anyone in Washington. Use that. If you can't go to the national march, go to the local march. If you can't make the local march on time, network and create a new one. The individual has greater power the further down the bureacratic pyramid you go, and if the states have the sack to stick with their 10th amendment related legislation, you may have a fighting chance to avoid persecution.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP: Write letters, sing kumbayah, all that good shit-but think globally and act locally. Go in for face to face meetings with your state legislature. A libertarian president would be nice, but a libertarian mayor and county sheriff can do a lot to make your life easier.
Remember, Mr and Mrs American Drug User, no other minority group in the country faces institutionalized prosectuion and murder, yet somehow our complaints are whining and our visions are pipe dreams. Our parents and grandparents allowed these rights to circle the drain along with a lot of other rights, but this might be the year we can take them back.
The forces against us are many. The current administration has made it clear that the cartels are necessary, even to the point of arming them and has thus made it clear that legalization is not on the table. The cartels have unlimited money and plenty of politicians in their pockets whose minds won't change no matter how good our arguments are. The vast majority of police view us as spoiled, entitled children whining for a pacifier while they shoot us in the face. And the greater public pays no attention to our murders when they do happen, or chalk it up as inconsequential and to be expected.
Those forces are many, but they are not infinite. We have a lot of work to do-but what alternative do we have?
Good luck, everyone, and Jah blessings.