Should Pot be legal, I don;t know

Posted by RobertFl 7 years ago to Politics
22 comments | Share | Best of... | Flag

I was discussing Legal Pot use with someone, and I find myself on either side of the argument.
The Libertarian in me says, “do what you want so long as it doesn’t interfere with my rights, OR cost me anything”.
But, we know, it will cost us all something. DUI, fatal accidents, rehab, lost productivity, etc.
My friend says, “it’s not restricted by the constitution, therefore, the gov’t should stay out”.
I agree and disagree. We have individual Welfare because the supreme court ruled that “General Welfare” allows for this, and of course, the “Greater Good”.
I don’t want to argue that – it’s irrelevant because the SCOTUS has ruled that way – so, for the time being, that’s the way it is.

If Welfare, to the individual, is for the greater good, than isn’t controlling drug use?
If so, than I say, the Constitution (or the Declaration of Ind., in this case) does restrict drug use.

I would argue, if someone wants to use drugs, or commit suicide for that matter, wants to , they should be able to do that. However, they also should not receive any public assistance either.
Fair is fair. You can’t be a little pregnant, and you can’t have some liberty. It’s all or nothing. No cherry picking.

I wanted to get input on how do I reconcile this. Am I for, or against the legalization of pot, well knowing, the welfare aspect isn’t going away.


Add Comment

FORMATTING HELP

All Comments Hide marked as read Mark all as read

  • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years ago
    This argument has gone round and round like a merry go round for over 40 years with the same basic results.

    1. Pot is less dangerous than alcohol, cigarettes, obesity, and a whole slew of prescribed medicines that our government pays for.
    2. There is absolutely no scientific evidence that pot does any harm whatsoever to the user or others.
    3. There is some evidence that pot can be beneficial for some people in some medical uses.
    4. Prohibitionist and statist believe they're justified in preventing the use of pot.
    5. The war on drugs has been not only a dismal failure, but possibly the most injurious national policy ever implemented and prosecuted in this country's history. With 5% of the world's population, we have 25% of the world's prison population.
    6. The war on pot has funded some of the worst criminal enterprises in history.
    7. No minority, no majority, no members of government have any Constitutional authority to prohibit anything.
    8. The greatest gateway to abuse and addiction is ignorance and the lack of education.
    9. On and on and on, etc.

    The bottom line, Objectivism, deriving much of it's original thought from classical liberalism, exists on a cornerstone of individual freedom and rights deriving from the existence of the individual with the responsibility for the individual's well-being and happiness resting on the individual. Since no one or thing owes that free individual anything and the individual owes nothing to anyone or thing else in life, Prohibition, even of some natural substance considered by some or all to be dangerous, is the antithesis of Objectivism, as well as truly rational thought and analysis.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 7 years ago
      I do believe some of your "facts" are in dispute. But, that isn't the argument/discussion.
      Cut right to the chase...
      'Since no one or thing owes that free individual anything and the individual owes nothing to anyone or thing else in life..."

      ABSOLUTELY. We are on the same page there. OK? However, that isn't the case.

      Whether my tax dollars are subsidizing a pot head, or a war on drugs is irrelevant. You're saying, that directly supporting the pot smoker is better than supporting the war on drugs.
      I'm not talking about the benefits of supporting one over the other.
      With a welfare system, there is no way that 'free individual' is making a personal choice, with his funds. Now, if we want to require anyone that wants to smoke pot to turn in their EBT card for the Pot Smokers Membership card - I'll go along with that.
      But, once again, that's not going to happen. I don't want to reward a dumb ass. That's my beef.
      If someone wants to smoke pot, in their house, on their free time (that means sober for work), on their own dime - have at it. If you get on the road stoned, and get caught, I want you strung up.
      I would also add, if pot is ok, why not meth, or crack? Seriously. Where is the line?
      Personally, I say, if you want to do crack, do it. the sooner you toast your brain, the sooner we reduce the surplus population - please do so BEFORE you reproduce.
      Once again, not arguing the merits of legalizing pot. It's a matter of how do I reconcile my belief that you the individual can do whatever you want as long as your hand isn't in my pocket, knowing full well, your hand will be in my pocket.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years ago
        As you say, cutting to the chase. You are correct and I share your anger at the welfare state we currently live in and that the progressives are working as hard as they can to expand.

        But that's an entirely different situation. Well, in a way the two issues are connected in one way. A government that wants to take care of everyone's wants and needs, also thinks it's OK to prohibit certain things. The problem is that they want to expand that to our food, our medical services, our definition of marriage, our everything. Sooner or later, we have to start pushing back and it'll take a long time and a lot of pushes to get back to some type of normalcy.

        It's going to be a long trek back to individual freedom and responsibility.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ mminnick 7 years ago
    I don't smoke pot, never have never will. I have a couple of questions though.
    1. If smoking in restaurants and bars is banned, why isn't smoking pot?
    2. Inhaling cigarette smoke even secondhand smoke is bad for you, why is the smoke from pot bad?
    3. Smoking pot has been shown to damage the brain, should not the sellers of pot have to have a label on their product warning of the health risks of smoking pot?

    4. The secondhand smoke from pot is an intoxicant. Should the person smoking pot be liable if the smoke fro their joint gets some else high and they have an accident? People are responsible if they serve alcohol and a person has an accident.
    I'll stop here. Don't want to be too provocative.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by khalling 7 years ago
      in Colorado, where smoking marijuana is legal, you cannot smoke it in a restaurant or anywhere where smoking is prohibited.
      Since the process of inhaling absorbs the bulk of the THC before exhaling, the question would have to be, can the trace amounts of THC expelled be inhaled? One would have to assume, this would be in a very closed setting-which I would assume be under voluntary means. Just smelling marijuana does not mean you're inhaling THC. I will admit that with any heavy smoking there is a risk to to adults in close proximity and children in close proximity of the smoker for secondary smoke effects. (carcinogens) One would hope the smoker was responsible enough to not expose others, as in cigarette, pipe and cigar smoking. My limited experience is the amount of smoke in the air with smoking a joint is much less than cigarette or cigar smoke-also maybe I'm naive-you're not smoking a joint in the same amount of time it takes to finish off a cigarette, are you?
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
    • Posted by Robbie53024 7 years ago
      1. Because the stupid laws are written specifically about tobacco. As an aside, people are now using these vapor inhalers to get nicotine without the bad things like tar and other noxious gasses. These are being banned by the liberals. Not because there are any bad chemicals being emitted, there aren't, but rather because they don't like that it "looks" like smoking a cigarette. Same stupid argument as those made about the scary black long guns.
      2. There are different chemicals in pot than in tobacco. I'm no expert, but there isn't the same type of tar, but there are other chemicals. I don't believe that either of them can be considered beneficial - the body tries to guard us from smoke in general and this must be overcome behaviorally. The first puff on a cigarette or joint evokes the same reaction, to cough and expel it. The body knows this is wrong, but the mind altering aspects of the chemicals trains the body to reject the instinct.
      3. As far as I understand, the studies have been mixed. Since it has been prohibited for a long time, most studies have centered on the effects of THC and that usually has been administered in studies in a different form - not by smoking. However, even considering that, there are several substances that are legal that cause damage to the body - alcohol, tobacco, heck, even Tylenol if too much is ingested in too short of a time period.
      4. This is true only if the smoke is concentrated. If you were in a bar and it were dense with the smoke, then yes. I've been at concerts where there were pot smokers in the vicinity and didn't get high. I could smell it but didn't have any effect.
      Don't take this as support for smoking pot, just looking to answer your points.
      I am against prohibition, as I describe below. I've not seen any good come from trying to legislate items based on a moral argument, but have seen tremendous harm. Just my opinion.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 7 years ago
      This gets outside my concerns. We could argue the health issue, and such, all day.
      I doubt, it will ever be legal to smoke pot in public.
      the real question is, should we allow someone the opportunity to infringe on another's personal liberties, directly, or indirectly.
      IF said pot smoker, always lit-up in the privacy of their 4 walls, and never ventured out "under the influence", and didn't use public money to purchase it, I don't care what they do.
      Yes, the same argument can be made for alcohol. Which is why I think it's reason enough NOT to legalize pot. I would think, by taking that justification it is not legislating morality.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
  • Posted by Robbie53024 7 years ago
    I'm not going to advocate for any specific substance, but rather against prohibition in general.
    Prohibition (not just the constitutional amendment, but all forms - liquor, drugs, pot, etc.) and particularly prohibition of activity or items based on a moral argument, have always failed. All it does is make criminals of those who continue to choose to partake of the banned item, and it makes criminal entities rich by providing the prohibited substance.
    There is another effect that is often missed. By banning a substance, it creates a desirability around it that wouldn't otherwise be there. The thinking goes - it must really be good if they want to prevent me from having it, or alternatively, they think that I'm not capable of handling it - I'll show them.
    Prohibition drives up price and incentivizes the refinement of the prohibited item into ever more concentrated forms so as to improve the payback on the risk. Since uncontrolled, this then affects users by procuring product with different concentration levels, causing a significant portion of the overdoses.
    You identify that the use of these substances will "cost me" due to accidents etc. This is true of non-banned substances. It is not the substance, it is the behavior of the individuals that is the problem.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 7 years ago
      I'm not sure. Legalized, the State will tax, and put fees on it. they might even regulate it's potency. that will still lead to an underground market. And, apparently, Amsterdam, is starting to reign in their drug laws.
      I'm not sure if that's a valid argument.
      As for "alcohol cost us, also". That's hardly justification for a pot free for all.
      I don't want to control someone else's morality. But, when there immorality spills into my life - that's a problem. We as a society didn't not address this before legalizing pot.
      The government has failed to protect my liberties.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
      • Posted by Robbie53024 7 years ago
        Legal or not, it is going to impinge on your life. People are going to do what they are going to do.
        As for the taxes and other regulations, I certainly didn't advocate that. Nor did I make the argument that one "evil" justifies another, so please don't put words in my mouth. Making anything "evil" by banning it is just as harmful, regardless of the substance.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 7 years ago
          I'm not trying to put words in your mouth.
          I think you're talking about "in an ideal world", we wouldn't tax or regulate it, and people would be responsible. If that were the case, we wouldn't be having this conversation.
          Let's replace 'evil'; with 'selfish'. Is it selfish of me to want to prevent someone from doing something that could harm me or others (physically, financially, whatever), or is selfish of the other person to insist they have right to allowed to opportunity to harm others?
          Let's try to even remove "pot" from the topic. I want to be able to drive my car, blind folded, as fast as a I want, through yards, and, I won't intentionally try to hit anyone, or any building. the constitution doesn't restrict that.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
          • Posted by Robbie53024 7 years ago
            If you did, and caused harm either physical or property, you should be sanctioned appropriately.
            You seem to want to place restrictions on liberty under the guise that just by doing so you will prevent harm. You are mistaken. I on the other hand, want maximum liberty and the corresponding responsibility to be afforded to all of us. If you harm me, for any reason, you should be sanctioned. I don't give a rip whether that harm was caused because you smoked pot, were drunk, or were texting. All of them are dangerous and your inability to be sufficiently in control of your actions, regardless of the reason, is the problem.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by khalling 7 years ago
            but if you did, you would be charged with vehicular manslaughter if someone died. There are already plenty of laws on the books to cover criminal acts. People are going to smoke pot whether or not it's legal. and a compelling argument can be made that your safety is in greater danger due to the black market for drugs created by the drug war. Think meth labs. Think turf wars over drugs. Drugs are a very dangerous business due to their being illegal.
            Here are the stats as of 2010 according to CDC. 31% of all vehicular deaths are due to alcohol. 18% of deaths are due to drug use-(alcohol might be involved)
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by 7 years ago
              How many times have we seen people with 15 DUI's and never any convictions for them, until they end up killing someone? Then, everyone is always so bewildered as to how someone could slip through the system that was supposed to prevent this tragedy.

              It just occurred to me what it is that bothers me the most. The fact that these people will get a free-pass when they screw up, and we'll get stuck cleaning up their mess.
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
              • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years ago
                So, because those in the judicial system screw up, everyone else that hasn't harmed anyone or thing has to be punished through more restrictive and prohibitive laws and rules? Is that your argument?
                Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by 7 years ago
                  So, because a small percentage of the population can't keep their pants up, we have to pay for their kids, or their birth control?
                  Because we can trust no one, everyone has to pull over at the DUI check points an demonstrate their sobriety.
                  Legalizing pot doesn't change that.
                  Are we talking about inconveniencing the would-be pot smoker, are protecting the population. To use a cliche, "if it saves one life, isn't it worth it?" Who's greater good is more important? Maybe there just isn't a good answer, other than to ensure an adequately harsh judiciary. But then we'll get to the more brothers are locked up than white folk, or some such nonsense. Then no one will get locked up.
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years ago
                    Legalizing pot changes the fact that with only 5% of the world's population, the US has 25% of the world's prison population, that 1 in 100 adult men in the US has a criminal record. Legalizing pot also begins the change to individual responsibility and one small step away from the Nanny Statism that is killing this country.

                    As to protecting the population, I for one don't expect anyone to protect me nor do I grant that right to anyone else - I expect to do that myself. As to your cliche, I'll give you another: From Ben Franklyn (paraphrased) 'Those that give up any right in order to gain security soon they will have neither.'

                    It is not nonsense that more blacks are locked up with longer sentences than whites, even though they only represent some 10% of the total population.

                    Get politicians and dishonest prosecutors out of the system and we'll have a fairer and more appropriate judicial system.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Posted by 7 years ago
                      I won't go into the prison stats because they have no meaning without knowing the why someone was sentenced the way they were.

                      I do not expect them government to bubble wrap me. However, I don't expect them to intentionally put me into harms way either.
                      The only valid argument to legalize pot is: It's cheaper on society than keeping it illegal.
                      That remains to be seen. I say there is no real evidence of that. The problem is, once this genie is out of the bottle, there's no going back.
                      The only other plus I see is, most chronic pot smokers likely won't vote in November.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Posted by Zenphamy 7 years ago
                        Robert, I respect your opinions. Many people in this country agree with you. But for me, the government's prohibition and criminalization of an individual's possession and use of pot is no different than the government's prohibition and criminalization of an individual's possession and use of a semi-automatic rifle or pistol, simply because it looks scary to a soccer mom.

                        But we are in total agreement that the rest of the population should not be forced to pay for the stupid individual's harm to himself. And I hope we are in agreement that should the stupid individual harm another or his property, that stupid should be held responsible for that harm, in a manner equivalent to that harm. But until there's a victim, and only then, is there a crime, and that victim must show direct harm. No one will ever be successful in controlling or preventing human behavior, including stupid behavior. And we should protect every individual's right to make stupid mistakes so that our own stupid mistakes are also protected.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  

FORMATTING HELP

  • Comment hidden. Undo