Apparently I’ve given some folks on the Internet the idea that I really care a lot about marijuana legalization. I don’t. I find myself where David Frum seems to be on the issue: in favor of reducing the criminal penalties for marijuana use, but not in favor of legalizing it, except for medical use.
Like most Americans of my generation, I’ve been around pot all my adult life. Never smoked the stuff, but that’s only because I don’t like smoking (there were those delicious brownies some friends gave me for my birthday in college, and that lovely space cake in Amsterdam back in the day). I hate the smell of it, too, but some of my friends over the years have smoked it, and I didn’t really care. I know a few of my friends today indulge, and … I don’t care. I’d much rather be around stoned people than drunk people. I’ve found that after one’s mid-twenties, the people who still talk about pot a lot are the kind of people who are boring.
If it’s legalized, I won’t lose any sleep, but it will be one more damn thing we have to deal with. Prohibition didn’t work because alcohol — wine, beer, spirits — were already intimately woven into America’s culture, and cultural heritage. Marijuana is not, though obviously that’s changing quickly. I can’t see why it’s cause for celebration that American culture will have mainstreamed one more way to get fried. I don’t think it will be that big a deal if (when) pot becomes legal, but I fail to see why it’s a big deal that it’s against the law, and I really don’t get the severe righteousness some pro-pot advocates bring to the issue. But, whatever. You’re not going to get me into a big argument over the issue because, you know, meh.