So they’re going to make dope legal in California. As if “alco-dope” weren’t already enough of a problem.
We’ve heard about all of the health benefits and tax rewards, but what will the real result of presenting the public with a new intoxicant be? Not that it’s new to most of them (polls show that the majority of society has tried it). But how will it be incorporated into our rituals and interactions?
Ready to toast the bride and groom with the entire room doing a bong hit at the same time? Maybe a little bubbly bud at midnight on New Years?
Keep in mind, if Jesus had passed around a joint at the last supper, we’d be living in a vastly different world; probably one where people commute on horseback down dirt paths and science consists of oracles interpreting iguana telepathy.
What will be the result of a world where business people have three-joint lunches and everyone wants to blow a bowl at the ballpark on a sunny afternoon?
Do we want to take a chance with pilots and train engineers still feeling the effects of yesterday’s session? Telling cops that they can no longer roust hippies would be like prohibiting dogs from chasing cats; it might permanently upset our sense of community balance.
This brings us to the larger, national view. Like this isn’t going to confirm the stereotypical image of Californians as a bunch of presumptuous, disrespectful buzz-heads.
Since the federal laws will probably not be changing any time soon, any person or vehicle bearing California identification will be automatically suspect.
Californians outside the state will be a target for law enforcement and those seeking the drug. It will leave us all “profiled,” fearing the good guys and the bad.
And what will be the fallout from pot users who find themselves dependant and want out? One drug-rehab official predicted that she will need many new counselors if the general public begins smoking.
A recognized consequence of smoking marijuana is that it makes humans more attune to the present and less inclined to strive for their futures.
Our young people are already overweight, lazy and seeking instant gratification without this influence. One of the most telling examples of marijuana user’s inability is that the entire ’60s generation’s cause was to make it legal – but it still isn’t. But it looks like it’s coming so I guess we better get ready.
Should we hire pot testers who will grade each crop and place it on a one-to-ten strength scale? Will we see TV commercials featuring Willie Nelson or Snoop Dog pushing “The King of Buds”?
Maybe a new, reggae state anthem and a legislature dominated by iron-fisted pot barons? All because of a primal weed that tweaks the dopamine in our brain receptors?
Hopefully, at some point, our evolution will lead us to a point where our species won’t need any filters to make reality interesting. Until then I’ll be out back taking my medicine.
John Balchak is a City Times staff writer