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More fun with bad OpEds

This one is by James Swift in the Kennesaw Sate University Sentinel: Actually, DON’T legalize it, and it’s a lot of fun.

I’m going to take a controversial stance and assert that marijuana shouldn’t be legalized. As a college student, that puts me in a very detested minority and sets me up for perhaps four years of campus castigation. […]

Alas, I vaunt my innate principles over such vanities, regardless. Sure, I may miss out on a few dates and get my tires slashed by a guy in a Phish tee-shirt, but that’s the price of so-called “free” speech, I suppose.

Ah yes, the martyr. Like so many of the great ones over the centuries, willing to suffer in order to maintain his principles. So noble. So admirable. Unless, of course, you’re completely (and easily provably) wrong. Then, it’s sad and pathetic.

A little note to James: if you’ve decided you’re willing to be a martyr, I suggest really doing some research to make sure you know what you’re talking about.

OK, so what are the principles that he defends?

To the “Really Green” Party out there, I proclaim the following: in your rhetoric, you claim that the illegalization of marijuana is due to corporate finagling and government paranoia. Essentially, pot is outlawed because the suits can’t regulate it, anybody can grow it and that billions of dollars that would’ve been taxed end up squandered as a result.

As much as I hate to say this, the government isn’t always preoccupied with devouring your wallet. If I may use some second grade logic; dead people can’t possess money. Therefore, it benefits the government to instigate measures to prolong the existence of its citizens to insure that fiscal funds are later usurped. Hey, it’s a necessary evil, that taking care of citizens’ well-being, you know.

The authentic rationale for marijuana’s illegalization is that it kills people, plain and simple. Sure, one joint isn’t going to give you a brain tumor, but a good forty years of exposure? Yeah, there’s going to be some negative implications on the smoker’s health. A granule of asbestos won’t give you lymphoma, but a lifelong courtship with the product very much will. Thusly, if a known carcinogen is introduced to the general populace, it is the government’s job to help curb the miasmic Diaspora.

Hey, some cute writing there (I love miasmic Diaspora), but “dead people can’t possess money” is your argument? “it kills people, plain and simple.” Really? Can you name one?

I can name people who were killed by drinking water, yet I cannot name a single one killed by marijuana (not to say that there haven’t been any in some way over the long term, but if it was really a significant issue, there would be evidence.) And, of course, as we all know, the best evidence shows that it contains the ability to destroy cancer. There is at least as much evidence that use of marijuana will prolong your life as there is that it will shorten your life.

Oh, and by the way, James. Just how well has the government been doing using prohibition as the tool to curb the Diaspora?

But wait, he’s got more!

Marijuana inhibits one’s cognitive capabilities, which ensures deterioration of one’s physical capabilities, which in turn, provides a risk to public safety. How efficient is a half-baked construction worker, huh? You want to undergo a filling while under the care of Cheech Marin, D.D.S.? For those of you who really believe that the drug is “harmless,” maybe you should try talking to the neglected child of a marijuana-user. Yeah, it’s a victimless crime, all right.

And then go talk to the neglected child of a soap opera watcher. Or the neglected child of a church bingo player. What does that have to do with legalization? And getting a filling from Cheech Marin, D.D.S.? Sure, I’d be happy to, if he was really trained as a dentist, but he’s an actor. If he was a dentist, he’d know not to be stoned, or drunk, or tired, or getting a blow job while drilling. There are things you do in your free time that you don’t while working. And again, legalization has no relevance here.

Ah, but James also has philosophy.

Those factors considered, my prime reasoning for maintaining the ban on marijuana stems not from a health or sociological standpoint, but a philosophical one. Marijuana is an agent that distances the user from the world, from the totality of reality as it exists. For a soul to desire such absconding, there is clearly a pre-existing disenchantment, a sense of insecurity and ineffectiveness. These are real problems, with real consequences, that marijuana simply masks and keeps the individual from exploring and resolving.

Ah, I see. Well, we’d better ban all those escapist movies, then. Science fiction — not allowed. Theatre — gone. iPods —(talk about distancing from the real world!) — illegal, along with all music. Any kind of play-acting (OMG, the children!) Yeah, a person must be sick to want to escape from the real world for even a short time. Best to make all that illegal.

The good news? Based on what I’ve seen in the comments at his article so far, James will be getting his wish to play the martyr.

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14 comments to More fun with bad OpEds

  • kant

    well pete, his arguments don’t have to be proven fallacious (and you do that quite thoroughly) in order to be wrong. his freedom of speech is inhibiting our freedom of choice.

  • InsanityRules

    Perhaps Mr. Swift intended the piece as satire – it’s certainly Swiftian enough to evoke Jonathan’s A Modest Proposal.

    If nothing else, Swift should win some sort of award for bombasticity! What a steaming pile of pretentious dreck. I hope that he takes his own advice and abstains from imbibing in cannabis. A stoned Swift’s pretentious pontifications would surely put a damper on any social gatherings.

  • Cliff

    “The authentic rationale for marijuana’s illegalization is that it kills people, plain and simple.”

    It’s gold Pete! Comedy gold! I swear, the greatest comedy minds in the world could not come up with some of these winners.

  • Load Bongs not Guns

    Don’t smoke or do any drugs James you don’t have any braincells to spare. Have a worse day.

  • Duncan

    C’mon, give the poor kid a break. Gosh, when I think back to when I was that age I recall believing some doozies myself.

    Please disregard this note if it turns out the piece was satire. Alas, I think that hope forlorn and misplaced.

  • Cata

    No don’t give that ‘poor kid’ a break. If he’s going to write as a journalist thats big adult like stuff, therefore, he needs to put under the same scrutiny a real journalist would be. Check his sources and facts and you’ll find most of his blather consists of outdated studies and ridiculous stereotypes about ‘slacker potheads’.

  • Joel

    Reading this OpEd was like trying to put together words that were formed out of a mouthful of Alpha-Bits Cereal! Or maybe he shredded a bunch of dictionaries to form sentences with the words that fell together? Painful to read, indeed.

  • DdC

    “…the primary reason to outlaw marijuana
    is its effect on the degenerate races.”
    – Harry J. Anslinger

  • Nick Zentor

    The author of this OpEd needs a lot more than his tires slashed. I don’t believe he’s anywhere near as “hip” or “cool” as he tries to make himself out to be. If he was he wouldn’t be peddling such B.S.

  • Cta

    I would love to see him write a piece like that after someone planted some herb inside his luggage at an airport. Preferably in some bassackwards Asian country. I would love to see that smug smirk then..

  • Servetus

    Fear is not normally associated with martyrdom. But as part of his martyrdom, the future Saint James of Kennesaw State University is terrified to set foot inside a modernist, cosmopolitan drug culture. Helping dissuade him, his insular culture has provided any number of convenient stereotypes to fear the ‘other’, in this case the ever-scapegoated drug customer.

    Saint James’ question: How efficient is a half-baked construction worker, huh?; reminded me of a cannabis fan and carpenter I knew who discussed his experiences with a housing project that had hired three separate work crews.

    As it turned out, one carpentry crew was made up of speed freaks, one consisted of heroin addicts, and the third crew were Mormons—probably polygamists, and in either event, whether LDS or FLDS, groups known to generally abhor or not use drugs. The speed freaks and heroin users also smoked pot.

    In terms of measured completion time and efficiency, the heroin addicts were number one, the polygamists a distant second, and the speed freaks were dead last.

    In the rarified space that Saint James inhabits, his chances of encountering or predicting similar incidental facts about construction workers, or any other member of the working class, is academically limited. And in any case, people truly familiar with drugs know that ignorance will not lead to bliss for Saint James.

  • Kozmo

    It appears to me that “an agent that distances the user from the world, from the totality of reality as it exists” is the air that James breathes. One has to live in a cave with no contact with any other living being to actually believe that crapolla james.

  • XXX

    This article is written by an opinionated freshmen in college who feels the need to go on some self-righteous crusade to denounce people he has encountered in class that he hasn’t bothered to understand or befriend. (He is also straightedge, not that I have a problem with that, a lot of my best friends are as well.)

    Thusly, this article deserves no real response from any free thinking individual. Soon enough, little Jason Swift will grow up and learn to respect other peoples personal decisions that don’t affect him(not that I’m advocating him selling out, if straightedge is what he finds is right for him then I think that’s awesome). It’d just be nice to see someone who can advocate their own personal philosophy in a civil, coherent manner. After wading through the stereotypes and general distaste for others in this article it is easy to see Jason Swift’s hopes for this article were for nothing more than a flame war. Good game Jason, you just successfully trolled teh inturwebs.

  • Hello! It is a nice day,have a good weekend!