Normally this column is about energy and how America can stand independent from foreign sources of oil. It’s a noble ideal, and as a child of the ‘60s, one I honestly didn’t think we’d ever be in a position to consider again. Long live Fracking.
But there’s another matter that surprises me even more, and has quite an irony to it. As you’re probably well aware, voters in our nation’s capital, along with those in Alaska and Oregon, solidly decided last week to legalize pot. What’s ironic, is that the implementation of legal dope in D.C. will ultimately be facilitated by…..Congress.
I often wonder what Ronald Reagan would say these days. You could be sure, he’d have some quick quip perhaps about just how doped-up the process already is, and that doesn’t need more, or something about his age and the gap between the greatest generation, his, versus the me-generation, ours. He’d deliver it in a clever way that would leave you chuckling, and thinking.
Unquestionably our country is quickly tilting in the direction of being OK with marijuana out in the open. Do you remember back in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s when some reporter would shout to the candidate, asking if he or she had ever used marijuana? (Like the reporter doing the asking wasn’t high at the time…Have you ever hung around a newsroom?)
Fast-forward to 2014 and four states plus the nation’s capital have legalized it, and about half the states cleared it for “medical purposes”. Before long, it will be nearly as widely accepted as alcohol. Even the Washington Post, in an article following the vote, theorized it’s probably less dangerous to society than spirits.
Any organization, corporation, culture or society operates top-down. Whatever is at the pinnacle of the culture cascades down and permeates throughout. So we, the United States, are showing the world that it’s now acceptable to get high in the shadows of the U.S. Capitol, the Washington Monument, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, or in front of the White House. Around the subways, outside a Redskins game (yes….that team), or just waiting at a bus stop.
As unquantifiable as it will be, I can only ponder the effects this will have on America, top down. Indeed, times are changing. And I still wonder what Ronald Reagan would say.