-62 votes

My Argument Against Marijuana

Update:

I'm intrigued by many of the comments.

First, of all, many people have yelled at me for pointing a gun at their head or something. WTF? Did you read what I wrote?

Second, although some people have been pretty comfortable with the point I've made even though they disagree, most people are quite visceral about what I've said.

I have 41 downvotes at the moment. Why? Because I've made a moral argument against the voluntary choice to use drugs including marijuana. It's frankly the same position, if perhaps formulated sort of specifically, as Ron Paul.

I said that Marijuana is not some big demon, and sure, if you've been through hell that sort of thing might help you. I'm not condemning you.

What do you think Ron Paul is all about, why do people worship him? He's a moral man. So, in fact, is someone like Alex Jones. They have a sense of commitment of their duties to themselves, their families, their God. There is a sense of higher moral purpose.

Now, that alone doesn't make marijuana bad, but I'm trying to say that having a 'goodie-two-shoe' 'boy scout' commitment to doing right is a good thing, and we need that attitude. We are awake in that we aren't naive, and we think for ourselves, but we must have that commitment and be proud of that aspect of our character.

Okay, so I also think that this sort of do-the-right-thing morality involves staying away from drugs if you can. Chemicals that alter you mental state. Why's that such a controversial position? The CIA planting drugs in communities, the DOJ putting people in jail for it - can't you see this as a two-pronged attack?

So, you're not evil if you smoke pot. But, if I wanted my kids to aspire to something better in life, to do their duty to God - whichever God - if I was looking for that 'spark' in someone... I'd tell my kids to stay away, and I do grow skeptical of people who smoke pot. Look, I have good friends that are liberal who think that if everything in society isn't circumscribed by law and regulation, then surely everything will go wrong and everyone will die. They are smart and well-intentioned, but they're wrong. They don't think quite right. Likewise, smoking pot is not this guarantee of being something bad or whatever, but I would automatically think something's not right.

And it's the same as if I wanted to go play sports with friends, or board games, or see a show of some kind and they want to get drunk and bang girls they don't care about. I'd have a problem with those people.

Everyone's different and have different tastes, but certain qualities and activities are just of a certain type that borders on that edge of nihilism and narcissism or what have you.

Anyway, some of this is private opinion. But I KNOW that this community is really motivated by the drug issue, and I am POLITICALLY ON BOARD with that issue. However, I thought it would be constructive to bring in a counter opinion. Look, some of us think ending the drug war will save our communities. Others think that spreading hemp plants all over the world like Johnny Appleseed will save the universe. That's deranged, and I was trying to start an adult conversation without relying on sophomoric talking points to say that perhaps drugs are really not a good thing, even if criminalization is a horrific overreach, and so perhaps this community needs to think about how much we want to celebrate marijuana.

I don't get why people get so pissed when you disagree with stuff they do. I didn't call names and presented a rational argument. I DON'T have to accept what you do, and I DON'T have to ignore it because it's what you want. What I can't do is ever force or coerce anyone. But on a public forum - you better damn believe I have a right to piss people off if I think it'll make the world a little better. And my goal isn't to just piss people off, but make an argument in spite of whether people choose to be pissed off.

41 down votes because I said marijuana might sort of be bad - I hate the 'this community is such and such' or 'I might have to quit'. No, not at all! I'm not going there. But I'm a little dismayed that there seems to be a big pothead situation here.

***********************************************************

I have been wanting to do this for a while, I'm finally in the mood.

So, this is basically an abstract/moral argument.

Happiness is the goal of life, not the purpose of it. While we meaningfully pursue our purpose, we are happy. Purpose includes basic material objectives, and abstract spiritual objective. Eating good food can make you happy. Rest can make you happy. Exercise can make you happy. Creating can make you happy. Social activity can make you happy.

Now, there are these 'drug' things. They can be anything from refined sugar (maybe), or caffeine (better argument), to marijuana or coke. I would argue that any drug is a moral negative. That doesn't mean enjoying a coffee is evil, but all else being equal, one would hope to pursue life's goals for their own sakes. This argument will make more sense in a minute. Of course, coffee has utility: alertness, creative brain power, but in this case I'm talking about that warm feeling itself as an end in and of itself.

Marijuana has utility, in theory, but the main reason why people use it is for that feeling in and of itself. And this is in fact why I distinguish alcohol from marijuana. It is a matter of intensity. Still, I won't beat around the bush. I think that alcohol is a strong moral negative, and that people drink it way more often than what might be proper. So we can conflate the two. All I'm saying is that mere marijuana use equates to heavy alcohol use. Equivocate with me if you choose, my abstract point remains the same.

The problem, then, with marijuana is that it induces a state of felt happiness. Let's discuss psychological reward mechanisms. Bringing a little science in here, we can say that generally happiness is the result of the sensation produced by dopamine in the brain. Basic survival tasks have been fine tuned and balanced by millions of years of evolution to reward survival achievements: eating, sleeping, sex, social activity with an appropriate amount of dopamine. Apparently, creative thinking, strategic planning is a uniquely human survival mechanism also rewarded.

There's more to it! With memory and conceptual thinking, we can associate these building block reward mechanisms with abstract spiritual successes. When Jesus talks about hunger and the bread of life, he equates the sensation of pure joy a starving person receives from having bread with the abstraction of a spiritual starvation and a spiritual feast.

The point is that this mechanism is real, and physiological, but it's the foundation of all our abstract and spiritual pursuits as well.

I concur that people *can* use marijuana and be functional and purposeful people. However, this is often not the case despite exceptions, and there are downsides not often discussed.

What drugs, including marijuana and alcohol for that matter do is that they induce a dopamine release related not to any act or achievement (that's natural and proper) but rather to the act of usage and using the drug itself. This throws the reward mechanism out of whack.

With heavy drugs, like heroine or cocaine, you see people destroy themselves and those they love because of this interrupted reward loop.

But, even marijuana has a bad effect. A person can still have a purpose while using, but marijuana consumes much more of that reward function than a mere 'thing you do' should. This means that you are wasting 'purpose' resources no matter what when you use.

Granted, let's say you grew up in a crappy household. Psychologically, you might be devoting so many resources to coping with that that drug use might actually free up resources by suppressing the effect of those issues. This isn't a good argument for drugs, if you can't gather.

So drugs interfere with your basic moral purpose and happiness mechanism. And this in turn prevents healthy moral and emotional growth.

Consider the way users act:
1. They are hyper defensive about their drug use. Why is this? Think about how you would feel if a beloved relative died? That person is a source of happiness and being in your life. Marijuana induces an artificial happiness, and so it takes on the role of an artificial loved one. Hence, many (not all) legalizes are hyper defensive. Losing their beloved grass scares them immensely.
2. Lack of self-awareness. It is well documented that marijuana can induce paranoid thinking. This isn't a political comment. I'm just making the point that I know users personally who get wrapped up in unrealistic ideas and have no self-awareness. Yeah, people can indeed lack self-awareness, but marijuana seems to be forcibly, chemically driving a certain lack of self awareness in people. That includes an awareness of the negative effects of using. Linking to point #1, people's state of fear over losing marijuana is chemically induced by the drug's effect on the brain, but people don't realize this. The feeling comes from their brain chemistry, and they act in response to it, but they have no rational, conceptual awareness of their hyper-defensiveness.

Those are just two examples of the sort of effects drugs have on the brain.

It's immoral because the reward process is so foundational to the greater moral purpose of pursuing virtue and a better life.

From a political perspective, the law doesn't have a place using coercive violence against drug users. But that's a general point that is so much broader than the issue of drugs.

Plus, despite my light-handed approach to this issue, drugs do in fact cause enormous harm to people and communities - this is just a fact. I like more foundational abstract arguments, but the basic pragmatic one works pretty well too.

So, that's my argument.

Like I said, we probably drink alcohol too much, but hey we do it. So, if a marijuana user is reading this, I might expect at least someone to think: "You know, he's pretty much right, but of course a vice is a vice and there's no mortal sin in a little smoke here and there." That's all I'm getting at.

Of course, if my argument is very valid, people will freak out in defense of their drug use and call me names.

******

I've thought about it just a bit more.

The idea is that morality is thought of in terms of general principles that inspire moral growth in a direction, as opposed to black and white. It isn't about demonization or 'drugs are bad'.

It's about, which direction do you want to go in.

I'm saying we should go in that direction of greater balance. Balance between physiology and spirituality. We have to eat, and sleep, and so forth. It affects our chemistry and therefore psychology. So we should try to be healthy so our chemistry is balanced. This means more spiritual energy to pursue the heights, if you will.

It's very clear that drug use is an unhealthy, unbalancing activity. That's what I'm trying to say.

While, therefore, drugs aren't 'bad' so-to-speak, I think I can legitimately argue for treating them with extreme reservation.

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Because your Opinion on the matter is not material

Your personal opinion on why you are "against" marijuana is not material to the jurisdictional liberties of other free people.

Your position relies on a set of emotionally charged, i.e. personal feelings.

So go ahead and argue on morality, and do not use marijuana, just do not attempt to justify any attempt to use force to enforce your emotional moralist personal view.

LOL, especially on a forum dedicated to Personal, not Collective, Liberty.

WGRR DB - rEVOLutionary talk for revolutionary times. Listen LIVE!

The world would be better

without marijuana, why?

Please, keep it short. I don't need to read another thesis.

Clarifying Alcohol And MJ Difference

So, that's really not my main point at all and people are understandably freaking out about it.

I make the point that I sort of see alcohol as a negative following the same logic as I do for pot. I even say that, to a lesser extent, something like caffeine could fall into the same bracket. My point is to show that this isn't some sort of hypocritical argument based on social convention.

But, I do distinguish Coca-Cola from Coke by talking about intensity.

If you read what I wrote, surely you know I don't want these activities to be criminalized. No, I'm just talking about the 'good idea' 'bad idea' of the issue.

Specifically about alcohol, though, why I made the comparison I did, has to do with perspective I didn't share.

I grew up in a family that drank about 5 times a year. Coffee was probably the most powerful substance we encountered, and even that wasn't a daily thing.

You have to understand that when you live life without substances, like where they're notably absent much of the time, the absurdity of these families that drink about every night with dinner sort of becomes apparent. Not that it's evil, but it's not like wine is the same thing as cranberry juice.

It's like, if you lived an a country that didn't go to war with everyone, and came to America, our neocons might sort of shock you.

So that's my perspective you missed.

It seems to me that if MJ was something you had, like those 1-2 glasses of wine 5 times a year, I could equate it to alcohol. But would you ever use it that way?

I mean, I guess you could, but it seems like there are milder herbs broseifs. And, if the point is to get high, or stoned, or to use regularly - well, compare that to alcohol.

If you drink to get drunk, or loose your cool at a party, or medicate yourself, then... well I'd find that equally objectionable to occasional pot use.

Still, it seems to me that marijuana might just be a little more intense, with just a few more negative effects and side effects. But I don't have that one golden alzheimer's study to cite, and I've never used. So, I won't pretend to compare it to alcohol like that.

But, it does seem like the way my family used alcohol - 1-2 glasses about 5 times a year - doesn't really have a comparable habit as far as pot is concerned.

It's not like my old parents say, "hey, let's get sh$t-faced this one time this year." No, they never go sh$t-faced. Period. So that occasional high doesn't have a parallel in alcohol use the way I see it as reasonable.

And I know lots of peoples' parents get sh*t-faced a couple of times a year. Poor Irish souls.

More stimulants

Plenty of SWAT police don't use 'drugs', but they are nonetheless addicted to the adrenaline rush brought on by trampling other people's liberties. No external chemical was added. Are these people 'healthy'?

Some veterans who have returned from war suffer from imbalances related to adrenaline addiction and must be treated with outside drugs in order to control their internal imbalance.

The bottom line is this: We have receptors and ligands. Receptors are locks and only the correct ligand key can interface with it. When the proper ligand attaches to the right receptor, things happen. Changes happen. All of this is natural. Some times the ligands are generated internally.

For example: A person may go through their whole life not addicted to or partaking in *any* outside 'drugs' but will still get extremely high just before death, provided there is time. The body has a shutdown routine that includes flooding your mind with poppies while it turns off your internal organs.

If we have a receptor for a ligand, it matters not whether the ligand is from our internal or external environment. What matters is why we are doing it and whether it has robbed us of control of our lives. It is futility, on the other hand, to attempt to dictate taste to others since it is completely subjective. People make their decisions and deal with the consequences.

Well, I mean

Yeah, the life of those SWAT team dudes is definitely unhealthy.

Logic says that just because A implies B (drugs lead to unhealthiness), doesn't mean that not A does not imply B (internal something leads to unhealthiness). A and not A can both imply B. But whereas internal unhealthiness can be due to a pattern of behavior, it might be fixed by a pattern of behavior.

Drugs explicitly impose what would otherwise be a product of life and lifestyle. My argument was that drugs divorce that aspect of making choices and behaving a certain way from healthy outcomes.

The SWAT members' unhealthy balance should alert them (maybe they become depressed or abusive) to unhealthy attitudes and behaviors.

With drugs it's just like: oh, it's because I'm doing drugs.

Never heard of steroids?

.

Leges sine moribus vanae

I never once

had a bad time on Marijuana.

It also saved my life. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and the pain I go through some times is unbearable. My doctor even said Marijuana could help, And it did!
I don't smoke a lot of it because it cost money i don't have but let me make this clear.

Anybody willing to put some one in a cage for smoking a plant is INSANE and needs mental help.

I am actually getting real sick and tired of you cowards bashing Marijuana.

I don't know how many times I have to explain to you morons.

PRESCRIPTION PILLS ARE WORSE
ALCOHOL IS WORSE
EVEN SOME OF THE FOOD WE EAT IS WORSE

So do me a favor and stfu!

I had just about enough of you people.

I don't want to put anyone in a cage

Read my post.

And why can't I bash Marijuana? It seems too precious to you.

Still, I see what you're saying about pain, and I think MJ is certainly far less worse than something like codeine (though I recommend you not take it through smoke inhalation which is pretty unhealthy regardless, well, if you do it a lot which you don't).

If your situation has left with MJ as your best option you're not some sinner. And I don't think it should be illegal, in which case the choice about the situation is up to you.

But, I still am arguing that, say, if it's a Friday night at a party you should just find something else to do besides get high. If you're listening to music or jerking around on the computer, you don't need to get high.

It's an opinion, I backed it up, it's all I'm saying. And I don't mean that you go out to parties or whatever, I meant 'you' generally.

Go ahead

Bash Marijuana. You have every right to say what you want. But I also should have the right to decline your ideas and do it my way.

I tried pain killers and I had a horrible time. I do understand what you mean. Any smoke in the lungs isn't good for you.

I just see it like this. Having personal freedom is understanding the consequences.

I feel too old to go party.

I am just tired of posts like this. Sorry. I didn't mean to be so rude about it.

Psychologists always feel like they are an authorirty

You have no authority to determine what an individual end should be morally. While I agree that marijuana doesn't serve my own end, whether it be by way of personal use or that of use by people I care about, it is arrogant to think that because my desires are that they are, that I have someone type of moral authority to decide the correctness of their desires.

Séamusín

add to this

if we are examining the things in our life and evaluating their value based on how much artificial happiness they create, lets start with the big ones. relationships(friendly and otherwise) and entertainment (books, music, television, religion, philosophy, "spirituality", and politics) are probably the creators of most of the dopamine in our heads, throw drugs (legal and illegal) in there also. They are all on the same level. To say one is worse than the rest is idiotic. Find happiness without ALL of these things and maybe you can bring a balance into your life, until then you are artificially stimulating that dopamine thru many different ways friend. cheers

Well, Shall we all sing kumbaya!!

While you do make some valid points the problem is your assumption that what is good for a few is good for the masses. This is an affront to the meaning of Liberty. While you may find those that agree with your conclusion and follow your logic it is still forgetting the concept of Liberty. There is still a lot more to learn about the effects of Marijuana. How many plants in the world contain linoleic and linolenic fatty acids? The uses for these Omega3 and Omega6 fatty acids are still just beginning. Your argument states that in most cases the consumption of Marijuana is detrimental to it's user but then depending on where you live even breathing the air can be just as detrimental if not worse. The good thing is that you are thinking and putting this out there so others can help you broaden your viewpoint. The more you learn the more you find out you didn't know anything. I find that in a relaxing situation it can help with the thought process of analyzing concepts to broaden my horizons. Others use it as a means to unwind from a hectic day. It sure beats the hell out of slamming down too many drinks and ending up in trouble. But hey its still a free country (?) and you can do what you want to with your part of it. I would prefer that when it comes to attempting to convince others that you are right and they are wrong you would also keep the thought of Individual Liberty somewhere in your thought process.

Here's my thing.

I don't really care one bit how you feel about cannabis. I just want you to stop putting a gun to my head to force me to pay for the enforcement costs of the prohibition.

Freedom is letting people make their own decisions

even if they are bad.

You make a great case for why one shouldn't smoke pot. You should be free to share your thoughts with others and others should be free to ignore them.

The problem with drug laws is that they remove the personal responsibility and freedom from the equation.

I don't do drugs and I wouldn't even if they were legal but imposing that position on others is wrong whether we like it or not.

Yes the article written is true, but is it relevant?

The information relevant to the DP seems like it should be related to the moral nature of government intervention of personal choice. Sure many substances are less than helpful, and many are legal. I think there is a moral danger to manipulating the public in believing that one substance is more or less 'dangerous' than another. Alcohol has limited citizen value and productivity in far greater numbers to any other substance that gets attention. Think of the do as I say, not as I do speech we have all heard. The danger of politics getting in the way of right and wrong is that soon the population will believe that alcohol has no danger because it is 'legal' while segregating the folks who use other drugs because they are illegal. No law Creates morality, isn't that a more relevant topic of discussion?

It's really quite simple.If

It's really quite simple.

If you own your body then you can decide what to do with it, and others cannot. If others can decide what you do with your body and you cannot, then you are a slave - by definition. Slavery is clearly immoral.

No one has a right to violate another person or their property whether sober or drunk/high - THAT is moral.

I wish you had

Smellanet.

I had trouble reading your entire post

If a person does something harmful to themselves but that doesn't hurt anyone else, do you think that person belongs in a cage? Heck, do they even deserve a fine? My feeling is that it's not up to you to decide what's best for everyone else.

Don't tread on me.

Back in my drug experiamentation days

I liked coke, shrooms, and mescaline much more than SMOKING pot.
Smoking pot is much more harmless than alcohol. The high doesn't last long (unless you eat it, then lasts TOO long sometimes).
I never liked the tired feeling i got from smoking, my coke highs were more fun, I was alert, happy.
Pot was just too mild, unless eating it of course.

I think drug dealers cause more harm to communities and people than drug users do.

to each their own right?

I like sleep and food way too much to like coke; hence the pot.

In the beginning of a change the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot.

But; Don't forget the liquor dealers too.

.

Mikoni

or the big pharma dealers, or

or the big pharma dealers, or the fast food dealers, or the motorcycle dealers......

Jus sayin...

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/marijuana-compound-found-su...

I'd rather die on my feet than live on my knees...

One mans meat

is another mans poison.
Some people smoke dope all their lives and function brilliantly...other people are destroyed by it.
There is no clear cut right and wrong. Are the legit smokers going to pick up the pieces of the shattered lives of those who smoking knocks around?

Cool

Whatever your position on marijuana I feel putting a person in jail and destroying a life over a moral argument is wrong in a "FREE" society. I have had my life changed irreversibly because of the decision i made when I was a child. It is a plant that came from the ground!

Two cents with citation

It seems to me, recovering alcoholic and pot smoker, that most people who find themselves in the position of abusing drugs or letting them get in the way of life are suffering from several conditions. None of which marijuana or, more appropriately, cannabis can be held responsible for.

In our self-deluded, misguided, misinformed and distracted society of America I find that most people lack the sweet practice of reflection. I too lacked it for years. Whilst I had dreams and goals the healthy practice of reflection never allowed me to look at my own actions and how they were facilitating failure. Instead of sitting on the couch watching the tube I could have spent that time pursuing goals and dreams. But television rewards the brain too. And it does so in a far more artificial sense that cannabis does. But if we do not reflect with ourselves and determine why we feel the way we feel I find that it keeps us powerless to resolve those issues.

Poverty happens to be one of the conditions that keeps us from pursuing dreams and goals. Many of us find ourselves in places and positions where we would like to do something with our time but we simply cannot afford to do so. Raleigh is an awesome place if you have money to spend. If you are not a rampant consumer you will find it more difficult to pass your time actively. Places of pristine beauty like the beach or mountains are better for the active to pursue cheap, wholesome entertainment. For those who want to break out of the box who have no interest in society's usual distractions, imagination is key. I take no pleasure in football or any of the other sports that we tend to watch. No other person can fulfill my life. Watching others fulfill theirs is no way to go about it. Yet this is the distraction offered to most. And most take it willingly.

Indoctrination is perhaps one of the most powerful things keeping people from performing well in life. When you go through your early life exposed to blatant lies from officials who wrote textbooks and you are meant to believe it then therein lies our greatest burden. Why did the D.A.R.E. program not mention that cannabis is so useful? Why did they not mention that it has so many health benefits? Why did they do nothing but tell me that if I went down the path of using any "street drugs" that I would become a shitbag in society and nothing else? How many people have never broken that mold?

No matter of rationalization can justify purely lazy and parasitic behavior. Yet we seem to have a great deal of that going on now do we not? But the problems of our culture and society stem from a dishonest approach to education and personal empowerment. They certainly do not stem from plants or substances whose benefits throughout history are self-evident. You cannot blame someone's personal behavior on a single choice that was made for any reason. You must analyze the entire environment in which they were raised and in which they reside. Living in a culture in America where an entire generation should be ashamed for having let things go to hell in a hand basket on their watch while they consumed, shopped and spent themselves into oblivion while giving birth to new generations without any real understanding of what makes a person successful, free and independent has probably done more to let you down than anything else.

If you still have a resentment against pot after careful reflection and analysis there is an incredible amount of reading that will change your mind. I suggest you start with a 1988 petition to the DEA from NORML reviewed by Francis Young. When you finish reading about three year old cancer patient who used pot and got better perhaps your mind will open more. Good luck and God speed.

It seems that "morality" is your issue.

Humans throughout 10,000 years of cannabis and other substances,(herbs , flowers extracts), have used these things for food, medicine, spirituality, and euphoric effects. I feel that it is natural to humanity to explore these things. We may not lead tribal life as things are now; but social, and or, personal use of cannabis is spiritual even in ways we do not notice on a daily basis. There is the bonding connections that are pleasing in the drug culture that many never mention. I guess it is the tribal nature idea. Those who our outside the culture will never experience or understand.
There is always a use or abuse issue with self control of the individual; but I have a problem using "morality" as an issue here at all. I think it should be a requirement to have experienced something before making moral judgement; even then, with caution.
I don't want to go into the list of medicinal uses proven for medicinal use of cannabis. It is still not as important as it is an issue of "freedom and cause of Liberty". Social Conservatism scares me as much as Neocon mentality. There seems to be that slant in your post. Many things could be counter-productive; but are sure subjective.

Mikoni

On Social Conservative

Even in the liberty movement, any intellectual movement really, there's a notion that some ideas are dangerous.

The more libertine have grave concerns about social conservatives. Social conservatives worry about the results of libertine attitudes.

That's okay. We can all exist together, and in fact, all have strong opinions too.

We have to have a steadfast commitment to certain principles of liberty, so our differences don't cause us to destroy each other. But we certainly don't have to treat ideas as dangerous.

In any event, I agree that substances have played a role in human civilization since forever. So has war, and rape and superstition. Drugs aren't war. I'm not making that point. But implicit in my moral argument is a point that is not necessarily obvious to everyone or even agreed upon. That point is that nature and nature's laws imply a certain purpose to life, which, when clarified by the spiritual lessons of many religious perspectives particularly far Western thought, lead to ideas that not necessarily everyone accepts.

Yes, there is an objectification of goodness and beauty, but I think we live in a real world in a real universe with a real God. Goodness is a 'product'. Of our effort or God's - whatever your perspective.

In other words, "That for which we strive" or "long" that object of our spiritual lives, is not some esoteric brightness that we attain through experiencing or awareness. That's exactly what I feel the essence of drug use does to spirituality. Rather, I see spirituality as an active pursuit of goodness that is never attained per se, but is experienced through attainment.

So, God is experienced through attainment, not attained through experiencing.

To ground this point, let me say that some people long for dissociation, for feeling, for the oblivion of drunkenness, or the chaos and uncertainty of a raging party. That seems to me to be a symptom of a disease of spirit. There is so much to do in life: music, games, cooking, eating, reading, walking, hiking, biking, painting, traveling, sharing, socializing, working, making, praying, etc. etc.

None of which requires drugs. Drugs don't 'enhance' these things. They merely provide an opportunity to do things while also experiencing a high.

I'm saying that it seems to me that if you think you need marijuana, or even wine really, to fill in those gaps of what the hell you're doing in life, or to complete some aspect of your life that seems to require that and isn't good enough as life on its own - that's really a tragedy.

Although, I admit, I grew up in a family that drank wine maybe five times a year. I know families where it's like at least a couple of beers every night. Anyway, there's something tragic about those families, like they're medicated or something. Probably Irish.

I very much enjoyed reading

I very much enjoyed reading your comment, and you generally flirt with a point or two of contention I also declared in my initial comment, despite having commented rather positively toward the OP. Two notions in your comment have spurred me to reply. The first is regarding "morality". The OP altogether skirts defining the term [for whatever reason, good or bad], but I enjoyed the OP's use of the term. I would admit that's it's an extremely hot topic in and of itself though, but here I interpret it in basic fashion, not involving religious dogma or even code of ethic, but simply regarding notions of happiness and the general pursuit thereof. I can't see how the OP can not raise the issue of morality in that sense. I don't contend with your use of the term either but for an insurmountable aching to add a few words to your main sentence regarding it...

"I think it should be a requirement to have experienced something before making moral judgement" for others!

Is that acceptable? Have I overstepped my bounds?

The other notion in your comment that spurs me to reply regards your fear of Social Conservatism. It's unfortunately true that many [including many of those who refer to themselves as such] use the term willy nilly as interchangeable with Neocon, and that scares me too a bit. But they remain very different, non-interchangeable terms in essence. A Social Conservative isn't automatically even against marijuana use or fornication. In fact you have shown signs of Social Conservatism even via your comment. A Social Conservative is one who wishes to preserve an organic sense of continuum in cultural normalcy apart from state disruption. To protect norms of cannabis use from non-local intervention is to be socially conservative. Perhaps you will enjoy this following presentation as much as I have. It describes where my mind goes when the likes of Rand Paul correctly claim themselves Social Conservatives...
http://youtu.be/6RDoYeXCoSE

Good points

The presentation was interesting. The discussion on communitarian thought related to how we view libertarian or conservative was thought provoking. I feel I am a mix as most are.

Mikoni