- Jun1/08 01:38:13
- Edited Jun1/08 01:41:38
- Listening To Yeah Yeah Yeahs - 10 x 10
- Feeling Getting close to sober...
- Smoking a Leftover crystal from the buster
The older I get, the more angry I become at much of society's views on pot (and the people who smoke it.) Especially that part in the parenthesis.
Now don't get me wrong, a lot of people where I'm from either do it themselves, or just don't care (or both.) But of course, those aren't the people you remember; you always remember the people most vocally against it -- in the media, on the Internet, wherever you see them. Now obviously not all anti-pot crusadors are like this, but the ones that often stick in my mind follow bad/outdated science, believe all sorts of myths without actually researching them, and plenty are also surprisingly hypocritical about the entire thing (I never personally listen to criticism about marijuana from people who DRINK.)
I really dislike being lumped in with all sorts of unsavory people just because my Drug of Choice is illegal -- often from people with a cigarette hanging out of their hands. I was smoking a bowl with a couple friends in a park one time, and we had this guy come up and start ranting at us for bringing our 'dirty drugs' to 'his' neighbourhood. Why yes, he had a cigarette in his hand. He proceeded to bring up all sorts of crimes against the park, like cigarette butts being tossed on the ground, people peeing on trees, homeless people sleeping on the park benches (well, seriously, they have to sleep somewhere don't they?) and all sorts of other things that had nothing to do with pot. It became apparent that he was lumping us in with the crackheads that also like to use that particular park sometimes -- they are often chased across the Bow River, I might add, by many local residents/hippies/artsy people (the area is attractive to plenty of alternative-minded types) ... many of whom (nay, most of whom) smoke weed.
At least I had plenty of responses... about how it was extremely difficult for me to piss on a tree (I realize some women can do this; I cannot -- I am also not interested in learning,) how I too worked full-time and paid taxes that went to cleaning up city parks, that I did not smoke cigarettes so I certainly wasn't leaving butts all over the ground (in fact I'll often toss garbage left on the ground into nearby cans even when it's not mine,) and well... you get the idea. Made sure to pointedly look at the cigarette in his hand when I brought up the relevent point.
He stormed off without a response, and I probably didn't do anything except aggravate him further... but really this is my point. Some people just have this picture in their heads of what 'drugs' are, and what a 'drug user' is, and they are often very resistant to being shown that their assumptions are incorrect.
I don't like people trying to claim 'oh, well pot isn't a drug' either, for that matter. Marijuana IS a drug, and a mind-altering one at that. There's plenty of drugs in our society, prescription and OTC, illegal and non-. Even some illegal drugs still have legal uses, such as derivatives from the coca plant being used to numb the cornea for eye surgury. Caffeine is a drug, yes even a mind-altering one, not to mention physically addictive and dangerous to overdose on. Nicotine is a mind-altering drug, I am an ex-cigarette smoker and let me tell you I've technically gone into work 'high' from that plenty of times -- not just the short-lived 'buzz' either.
Many drugs in society are readily accessible for whatever rate of use you desire. Many more are available by prescription, and therefore only to certain people with specific problems (and at a suggested dose.) Drugs can help, drugs can heal, drugs can hurt, drugs can be abused, drugs can be just for fun, drugs can addict, and drugs are EVERYWHERE. I do know some people who try to avoid many drugs, including caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, etc. Even then these people are often open to 'natural' herbal supplements, some of which are (yep) drugs. Hell, you can even get high on oxygen.
To go further, through various physical activities like running or dancing you can get 'high,' thanks to such things as adrenaline and endorphins (some popular recreational illegal substances cause your body to release a ton of either or both into your system, which are in turn the source of a good chunk of the effects.) People (such as myself, again) into S/M can relate other highs as well ('subspace' and 'topspace') -- thanks again to chemicals your body naturally releases under certain circumstances.
Drugs aren't for everybody, and not every drug is 'right' for everybody either, be it due to internal body chemistry, general lifestyle, personal preference, whatever. I am a firm believever in being able to do what you want, so long as you aren't actually hurting anybody else (without their consent.) My sister has a very good medical reason for her MJ intake, but I am an unashamed heavy recreational user, and have been one (not always the heavy part) for almost eight years now. I work, I have a life plan I'm moving along with that includes a return to post-secondary, and believe it or not I'm going to be an engineer (computer.) I already have some college behind me, and I was at the top of my class. I pay taxes, I'm nice to everybody unless they give me a reason not to be, I partake in some political activism, I even vote, and I'm one of the least judgemental people you'll ever meet.
What I'm trying to say is that there are plenty of people out there who don't fit the 'lazy stoner' stereotype, can we please lay it to rest? Can we finally just admit that many different types of people smoke weed and that probably has more of an effect on what type of smoker they are rather than the drug itself... sure it can be a de-motivator, make you sleepy, whatever -- but there are plenty of us who are more than capable of dealing with that, just like there are plenty of people who can still make it to work despite not getting much sleep the previous night, or whatever.
I know on this site it's preaching to the choir and all... and it's a rant I've uttered before, elsewhere, I'm sure. Either way, figured it was a decent enough way to start off my blog here.
An edit to emphasize: my ANGER, at having to hide when I see smokers outside with no fear. At having to hide when I see drinkers in the bars with no fear. When I see people drinking on their porch with no fear. Every time I stop to consider the safety of my surroundings, look around for cop cars, or something similar... I get angry. It could just be that stage of my life, various things related to fearing for my safety thanks to being female have also been making me more and more angry. But either way, I hope to direct it usefully, perhaps with even more activism.