Some Conservatives Still Pine for the Good Ol’ Days of Cannabis Prohibition
Aron Ravine, a self-described “nudnik,” who writes for National Review thinks so and I suspect others do as well. This thinking, however, is that of an ever-shrinking minority and it is hard to imagine the pro-legalization trend being reversed. Nevertheless, let’s look at the arguments and why he claims libertarians are so wrong on this issue.
Before we press on, it is important to remember that cannabis legalization is basically citizens of individual states standing up to federal authority and flipping it the bird.
Ravine claims, “I do not, and do not plan to, partake in the devil’s lettuce.” Well, libertarians have never suggested, apart from medical reasons, that people consume cannabis any more than they suggest people consume alcohol, potatoes, pornography or Nike products. Libertarians, above all others, support the right to consume—and not to consume—so that is not a real issue.
The first issue Ravine raises is the increasing consumption of cannabis over the last twenty years, the period when cannabis has become increasingly legal and accepted. For any number of reasons, everyone should have expected this: more legalization, less punishment, lower prices, greater availability, new uses, new forms, substitution for other legal and illegal drugs, means more consumption. So, I’m not sure what Beltway libertarians he hangs out with, but they fail the basic-common-sense test.
But does this increased consumption lead to greater health concerns? Ravine thinks consumers should be concerned with lung cancer and disease, but of course that is related to smoking, which presumably everyone knows about and cannabis smokers typically consume tiny amounts compared to cigarette smokers. While the science is limited, “Smoking cannabis has not been proved to be a risk factor in the development of lung cancer.”
Ravine also notes the correlation between cannabis and psychosis, but does cannabis cause psychosis or does psychosis lead to cannabis consumption? With respect to this first general concern, nob
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