Monday, January 06, 2014

Drugs and the politics of control

I have one additional thought around drugs and this country’s draconian approach to drug use. There is a puritanical, Calvinist heritage that runs strong and deep through America’s roots. This strain of Christianity equates pleasure with sin, fun with frivolity and the questioning of dogma as heresy. Even in more moderate branches of Christianity, pleasure for pleasure’s sake has always been frowned upon. Although there may not be many people who consciously identify with these more fundamentalist teachings, they have nonetheless influenced America’s elites, who support this harsh ideology as a way to control the rabble. Think about it. As late as 1984 we had a hit movie (Footloose) about a big city boy who moves to a small town where they don’t allow dancing in high school.

Mind-altering drugs are a direct threat to an orderly, controlled, obedient society. Just as in prior centuries where the clergy attacked anything (including science) that challenged approved church dogma, elites today are terrified that if people start experiencing different realities, opening their minds to different ways of living and thinking, the one-percent’s grasp on the levers of power will be threatened. What happened in the 1960s scared the shit out of the ruling class and they’ve been working hard over the last 50 years to try and stop it from happening again.

Fortunately, they won’t succeed. Spineless politicians and FOX pundits may still cling to their drug war mentality, but the people are moving forward without them. South American and European countries are telling the hypocritical, drug-consuming U.S. enough is enough, your drug war is a sham and it’s time to try a new approach. The dominos are falling fast. There will come a time when prisons house those who truly belong there, not a bunch of schmucks who got busted for nothing more than smoking a blunt.

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