Such a statement is so silly that I'm assuming you were only joking, somewhat like my own silly answers to some serious questions.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Alcoholic beverages, television and the internet can all be used without raising the questions I raised above.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š
I meant it partially in jest and partially seriously.
Abuse of alcohol can have terrible effects on a person and all the people whom are affected by an alcoholic. That is so obvious I don't think I need to elaborate.
As for tv and the internet . . . Clearly, those things are not physically drugs. Those things are machines. Yet, they can be used like drugs. There are millions and millions of people who spend HOURS --every day-- sitting in front of a box and staring at it. They plan their lives around it. They even decide when to go to the bathroom by it: a box. Now, if I put a plain old cardboard box in the center of a family's living room and asked them to stare at it for hours upon hours, they would think I am insane. But, if that box is a tv or a computer monitor, people happily spend huge amounts of their precious time just sitting there, watching a box. TV and the internet are not drugs, but people often use them as drugs.
I'm not advocating that everyone go out right now and smoke some marijuana. It is illegal.
But, it’s also just a plant
. And like many plants, it can be used for good or for ill.
We in America are missing the real issue: the use of drugs overall. We are often conditioned to say that all drugs are bad. Yet, we fail to see that we routinely use certain drugs: alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, sugar, and so on, plus the drug-like devices of tv and the internet. If we as a nation would practice a modicum of fasting, prayer and moderate asceticism, we would see right through this. Some things can be used responsibly to improve our mood and relax our mind -- we already do that. Yet, once we label something to be a “drug” we think it is per se evil. Simultaneously, we think that if something is NOT labeled a drug, it’s ok to use without much restraint -- such as alcohol, tobacco, sugar, etc.
I suppose what I am arguing is this: moderation. First, we should recognize that any chemical --legal or illegal-- that changes the mood or the mind is a drug. We should also recognize that some devices, like tv and the internet, can be used (and abused) like drugs. Then, we should have a realistic set of criteria for saying what makes a drug good or bad. The current “scheduling” of drugs in America is a good start, but I don’t think it is perfect and I think it also has much to do with politics. (And, in my opinion, I think marijuana is about as dangerous --or beneficial-- as alcohol, and it should be treated like alcohol: legalized, taxed, with strong penalties for people who endanger themselves or others while under the influence of it.) Then, we should live and practice a lifestyle of moderation in all such things.