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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/21/10

The Right to get High

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Message Allan Goldstein
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Every year or two some public figure gets in trouble and I feel compelled
to write yet another version of my drug-prohibition injustice column.
Last year it was Lance Armstrong. This time it's Ron Washington.

For those of you who don't know, Ron Washington is the manager--for the
moment--of the Texas Rangers baseball team. He tested positive for
cocaine last year; he said he used it once.

I hope that's a lie, because he's had to abase himself enough to cover an
eight-ball. That one high got him three weeks in rehab, and now he can't
take a leak without some putz holding a cup under his putz. All because
he wanted to have a little fun, off the field, on his own time, with
demon coke.

So here we go again. Another victim of our crazy buzz-phobia. Ron
Washington isn't going to jail for his sin, but he could have.

Railing about our inhumane, ineffective, counterproductive and just plain
evil drug policies is an exercise in futility, the Super Bowl of

Sisyphus had it easy. He only had to roll a rock up a mountain. Trying
to change our drug laws is like rolling a mountain up a rock. Sisyphus
was a sissy.

Well, I'm done with half measures. If you are trying to do the
impossible, you might as well ask for the impossible. Once and for all.
No more compromises, no more nibbling around the edges, no more happy
talk and BS excuses. The whole drug law edifice is rotten, rotten to the
core. It must go.

The most damaging thing about drugs isn't drugs. It's jail. Drug
prohibition is a murder machine powering failed states. The most
poisonous drug is lead.

Drug laws aren't about social control, they're not about crime, they make
crimes, they're about sin, they're the product of theocracy.

A free, secular, society is one where nobody has to power to dictate what
you can put into your body. In a free society, you own that body. You
can put whatever you want into it and you can put it into what and
whoever consents.

It's taken a couple of hundred years but we've finally allowed the
latter. The sodomy laws were religious laws as well. Homosexuality was
banned because it was considered a sin; there is no other reason, or
rather excuse, to justify criminalizing that ineradicable human behavior.
So now it's legal to commit sodomy, a mere three thousand years since
they invented it in Sodom.

There is no difference with drugs. Pills, powders or penises, it's all
the same. It's your body. It's your choice. You are free to do as you

Otherwise freedom is a lie. What good is freedom if you are only free to
do what the government deems "good?" You have the right to get high.

The Founding Fathers left that out of the Constitution. They left out
the right to bear arms, too, but they quickly jammed it into the bill of
rights. We've been paying for that freedom ever since. Supposedly it's
helped keep tyranny at bay. But there's still plenty of tyranny around
when it comes to what we're allowed to do with our bodies.

It is time to rectify that mistake. I hereby propose this 28th amendment
to the Constitution.

"A well-regulated mood being necessary to the pursuit of happiness,
Congress shall make no law abridging the right of the people to get

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San Francisco based columnist, author, gym rat and novelist. My book, "The Confessions of a Catnip Junkie" is the best memoir ever written by a cat. Available on Amazon.com, or wherever fine literature is sold with no sales tax collected. For (more...)
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