A SoCon Defends Her Vote for Marijuana

Let’s get the personal out of the way: I’ve never consumed marijuana in any form. Not only have I never inhaled it, I’ve never even touched a joint in passing (just wait … there’s more of these double entendres). Never eaten a “special” brownie. I’ve hardly ever even been in a room where it was smoked, and I came of age in the 70s and 80s!

The closest I ever came to smoking anything was when I rolled up a small piece of legal pad paper and thought about “smoking” it while blowing the …

  1. EThompson
    flownover: Who knows where Buckley smoked that joint ? 

    What a bunch of amateurs ……………..

    Here’s a tip, if you have an alarm clock set it to wake your ass up early this morning and go watch the Geminids, it’s like acid (ask your grandpa)

    truly, drugs are relative to the zeitgeist, some of us are glad we were young before crack and meth came along, as certain types will always try the fastest car, the highest height, the most radical position.

    thankfully I am SO OLD that I retain voluminous memories of dinner dates and courting. (and sparking -thks Joni) .

    Begging the pardon of WC for wandering off-topic, but do have to convey my sheer admiration for one of the ‘wildest and wooliest’ commentaries ever made by flownover! ;)

  2. tabula rasa

    WC:  My natural inclinations probably would have led me to vote against, but you make a well-reasoned case.  

    I will say that in the vast constellation of issues facing the nation, this one (yea or nay) isn’t very high on my priority list.  

    But if we legalize pot, the government should keep its mitts off our Big Gulps and transfats.  There is a certain irony that at the same time that some states are legalizing pot, in other places, big soft drinks and Ding Dongs are falling into the regulatory clutches of big government.

  3. DocJay

    Well put.  There are medical benefits although I suspect very few users hit it for those reasons.   

  4. Limestone Cowboy

    And a great example of what Fred Cole posted on earlier.

    http://ricochet.com/member-feed/Understanding-The-Other-Guy-s-Point-Of-View

    A conservative can be persuaded to accept a libertarian public policy position, without necessarily accepting the main libertarian argument for it.  And vice versa.

  5. Mendel

    Welcome to the slippery dark slope, comrade!

    Western Chauvinist:

    There’s a bevy of bad behaviors which go along with alcohol consumption which are much less prevalent among marijuana users, including domestic violence and driving while intoxicated. …. I’m a conservative. I understand life is a series of trade-offs.

    As you know, I went to college in your fair city, and as I’m sure you also know, said college had a reputation for widespread partaking in herbal healing rituals.

    As an EMT in college, I worked with a lot of police – who tend to have a pretty sober view on which activities pose a threat to the community.  The cops made it clear that recreational marijuana use, among students or almost anyone else, was simply not on their radar of pressing issues.  The likelihood of pot use resulting in a civil disturbance was orders of magnitude lower than alcohol, other drugs, or even natural mental disorders.

    Pot use is not harmless, but if we banned every recreational activity which was potentially harmful, society would go crazy.  It’s all about priorities.

  6. Douglas

    I give up. I give up because apparently, conservatives are giving up, and giving in. So, let’s go ahead and bury conservatism already. Put flowers on it’s grave, sing a hym, and hand the keys to the Libertarians. 

  7. Frozen Chosen

    WC,  I would like to take a couple of exceptions to your post.

    1. I doubt that anyone who is caught smoking a joint serves any jail time.  This is generally reserved for dealers or serious repeat offenders with large quantities of Mary Jane

    2. I also doubt that legalization will eliminate drug dealers.  Do we think that these people are just going to go away?  Why would they not continue selling marijuana illegally?

    Also, the connection between marijuana and schizophrenia is well documented.  I had a young nephew who became seriously schizophrenic after smoking pot several times.  Poor guy’s never been the same.  While it’s true that not everyone who smokes pot gets schizophrenic it definitely is a contributing factor for those who have a tendency toward it.

  8. Eeyore

    Although marijuana does cause it’s share of vehicle accidents, I’m reminded of a friend pulled over by police some lifetimes ago.

    Officer: Do you know how fast you were going?

    50?   No.   60?   No.   70!?   No…5…

  9. flownover
    Cornelius Julius Sebastian

    Hurm…. · 2 minutes ago

    whaaa??

    that really harshed my mellow man

  10. Lord Humungus

    Excellent.

  11. Cornelius Julius Sebastian
    flownover

    Cornelius Julius Sebastian

    Hurm…. · 2 minutes ago

    whaaa??

    that really harshed my mellow man · 17 minutes ago

    No worries.  That was my way of saying, “I don’t like this, but I am thinking about it because I’ve thought the same thing already and, as a practical matter it is probably inevitable.”  But my inner Rorschach doesn’t dig it too much.  BTW, that BBQ sauce is still flipping AWESOME!  I think I need to winter grill this weekend and further ponder a cannabis saturated America.  Maybe it would be a good thing because the liberals and libertarians would be stoned so often that they’d forget to go to the polls….

  12. Leslie Watkins

    Great post, WC. Meaning, of course, I agree with you entirely. There are lots of things I like and don’t like but nonetheless do not think it is the state’s role to police, recreational pot use being one of them. For most issues these days, I take heart from the following lines from (by of all groups, the Police) “Spirits in a Material World”: There is no political solution. … Where does the answer lie? Living from day to day.”

  13. Fred Cole
    Douglas: I give up. I give up because apparently, conservatives are giving up, and giving in. So, let’s go ahead and bury conservatism already. Put flowers on it’s grave, sing a hym, and hand the keys to the Libertarians.  · 31 minutes ago

    You’re know that National Review has been pro-legalization since 1996, right?

    You missed that issue?  Well, you can read about it here.

  14. Mendel
    Fred Cole

    Douglas: I give up. I give up because apparently, conservatives are giving up, and giving in. So, let’s go ahead and bury conservatism already. Put flowers on it’s grave, sing a hym, and hand the keys to the Libertarians.  · 31 minutes ago

    You’re know that National Review has been pro-legalization since 1996, right?

    You missed that issue?  Well, you can read about it here.

    Fred, you know I agree with you on almost all issues, but being patronizing doesn’t help our cause much.

    I’m sure that Douglas knows exactly what NR wrote about marijuana and also knows that WFB smoked pot once.  But WFB is not the Jesus Christ of the conservative movement, and NR not the Bible, as conservatives on Ricochet have been pointing out for quite some time. 

    Saying “well your “flagship publication” endorses it, so why don’t you get with your own team, man?” is, frankly, a Junior League move.

  15. Fred Cole
    Frozen Chosen: WC,  I would like to take a couple of exceptions to your post.

    1. I doubt that anyone who is caught smoking a joint serves any jail time.  This is generally reserved for dealers or serious repeat offenders with large quantities of Mary Jane

    2. I also doubt that legalization will eliminate drug dealers.  Do we think that these people are just going to go away?  Why would they not continue selling marijuana illegally?

    1. You may or may not get a criminal record.  It’s not just dangerous dealers, but its also peaceful people who consume it for their own use, and people who use it as medicine.

    2. There generally aren’t black markets in legal things (two exceptions: tax avoidance, as in cigarettes and stolen property, physical and intelectual).  The price for prohibited items includes a premium built into the price because of the prohibition and the additional risk involved.  If you can buy it in a store, you can buy it cheaper bc it doesn’t carry that premium (also probably a more reliable quality, and more convenience), so the legitimate merchants will out compete the street dealers.

  16. Mendel
    Frozen Chosen: WC,  I would like to take a couple of exceptions to your post.

    1. I doubt that anyone who is caught smoking a joint serves any jail time.

    2. I also doubt that legalization will eliminate drug dealers.  Do we think that these people are just going to go away?  Why would they not continue selling marijuana illegally?

    To add to Fred’s points:

    1) There have been a few states over the years which have had mandatory jail time for possession of any amount of marijuana, but I’m not sure if any currently do.  In most states, possession of small amounts will indeed not lead to jail time.

    2) Perhaps the fate of organized crime after the repeal of Prohibition is a model: the organizations didn’t go away, but they did stop selling alcohol after a few years because they soon couldn’t keep up with the open market.  And while the Mafia itself didn’t disappear, removing its main business (together with the decline in unions after that) has certainly robbed it of most of its power.

  17. Joseph Paquette

    You forgot, one more reason to legalize it.  The vast number of young men and women who are precluded from professional careers for convictions.  How many doctors, lawyers, future presidents are being lost to a ‘drug war’ over a minor intoxicant? 

  18. Joseph Paquette
    Also, the connection between marijuana and schizophrenia is well documented.  I had a young nephew who became seriously schizophrenic after smoking pot several times.  Poor guy’s never been the same.  While it’s true that not everyone who smokes pot gets schizophrenic it definitely is a contributing factor for those who have a tendency toward it. · 1 hour ago

    Schizophrenia is a terrible disease with a multifactorial cause.  However, I know of no credible study that shows the connection between marijuana and schizophrenia.  First, many people with mental illnes try to self medicate with drugs and alcohol.  Further, Schizophrenia manifests itself in the late teens and early 20′s this is a prime time for experimentation with intoxicants.  There may be a correlation, but  there is not a causation.  

  19. Joseph Paquette
    Douglas: I give up. I give up because apparently, conservatives are giving up, and giving in. So, let’s go ahead and bury conservatism already. Put flowers on it’s grave, sing a hym, and hand the keys to the Libertarians.  · 1 hour ago

    Conservatives should embrace individual liberty and small government.  You’d win more elections.  The social conservatives apparently abandoned you in the last two elections.   They are single issue voters, unless your ‘anti-abortion’ enough they won’t turn out. 

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