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View Diary: Obama: 'Doesn't make sense' for federal government to go after states that legalized marijuana (226 comments)

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  •  He said he opposes legalization (1+ / 0-)
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    By definition, if a drug is illegal then using it at all is abuse/misuse and requires some sort of intervention -- either jail/prison or 'treatment' -- but just recognizing it's no different than having a beer, which Obama happily enjoys -- he's against. He is not where I want to see him 'evolve' to on this issue.

    •  Legality does not define abuse (0+ / 0-)

      or misuse, and to say it does is nonsense.  It is entirely possible to use a drug that's illegal and abuse a drug that's legal.  See: Alcohol abuse.

      The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

      by AoT on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 09:21:46 AM PST

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      •  Yes, in terms of the law it does define it (0+ / 0-)

        I work in an organization that works with national standards and regulatory requirements related to drug treatment programs. Per the legal and regulatory definitions, funding for programs, etc., "drug abuse" or "substance abuse" (and the newly popular term "substance misuse" which means the same thing) is defined (in part) as the use of any illegal or illicit drug. They do not recognize the possibility of simply using an illegal drug as non-problematic.

        I am not of course saying it's not possible in reality; I'm saying that according to the current law, any use of illegal drugs is by definition a problem, whether they call is abuse or misuse; the standard calls for intervention and suppression because it's illegal. No other reason.

        •  That's well and fine (0+ / 0-)

          but laws do not define word usage.  People can abuse alcohol even if they use it in a completely legal manner.  I could give a fuck if an unjust law tells me something or other is abuse when I know it isn't.

          A question though, do any of the laws actually define something as abuse or do they just say that use is illegal?  By that I mean: I know that there are programs that use the word abuse and tie that to the simple use of drugs that are illegal, or the misuse of legal drugs, but are there any laws that make "drug abuse" illegal?  Just wondering really, and you seem knowledgeable.

          The revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 09:50:06 AM PST

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          •  Laws do define word usage in many areas of life (1+ / 0-)
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            and if this unjust law were to land you in a situation where 'treatment' for your 'drug abuse' was being forced upon you -- even if you do not consider your use to be abuse or a problem in your own life -- then I think you would probably start giving a fuck about it. That is what happens to a lot of people due to the current climate of "illegal drug use = abuse" and that is what I'm trying to get at here.

            are there any laws that make "drug abuse" illegal?
            No. Drug abuse is not illegal per se, as long the drug being abused is legal, and is legally obtained. Such as with alcohol, tobacco. Then you just get treatment and availability of help to quit. Or jail if you break other laws in pursuit of your habits, drunk driving for instance.

            But if you use any illegal drug, including occasional marijuana use, or you use any legal/prescription drug that you have obtained illegally or illicitly (not your own prescription, fraudulent prescription, stolen, etc.) then you are considered to be a drug abuser or to have a "substance misuse disorder" or something along those lines ... no matter what you think of your own use.

            That is the very problem I am complaining about here. This is why legalization of drugs (at least marijuana) is so important. Because it does matter in people's lives.

      •  And to be clear, (1+ / 0-)
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        yes there are also other aspects to the definitions of abuse/misuse which are not related to legality; such as with alcohol abuse or addition. Interference with daily life, health problems, etc.

        And they are branching out in that area too, with more and more "problematic" behaviors and activities that are legal but being labeled as addictions requiring intervention and treatment programs, such as one of my personal favorites, internet addiction. :)

    •  Colorado Lesson (1+ / 0-)
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      freshwater dan

      Bill Maher recently interviewed the man who spearheaded the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, and was told that the main wedge point of their campaign was convincing voters that alcohol was actually more "dangerous" than marijuana. Pre-campaign polling in CO had uncovered this "dangerous marijuana" voter attitude, so they put a lot of resources into reversing that position, including calling the Democratic governor a drug pusher because he owned places where beer/alcohol was sold. Despite the governor's opposition to the marijuana legalization measure, it got more votes than the President.

      So, the Prez and his fondness for beer (fine with me) needs to be shown for what it is: the president is consuming a mind altering substance, which has an abuse potential greater than marijuana. And, by all measures, alcohol is verfiably more dangerous to the general public than marijuana. I don't need to spell out why that is here, you all undoubtedly know these facts, but a majority of the general public (except now in CO) does not.

      If the Prez is brewing beer in the WH, then he's doing the equivalent of "home grown."

      For many states, this is the meme to push, and we need a Presidental questioner who will gather some facts about alcohol vs. marijuana, and put some questions up on the matter.

      While I'm at it, I assert that the real "gateway" drug is tobacco. Available at age 18, and it sends a message that it's OK to abuse your self via a legal substance.

      "We will find fulfillment not in the goods that we have, but in the good we can do for each other." ~ RFK

      by paz3 on Fri Dec 14, 2012 at 10:20:19 AM PST

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