The Legality of Certain Addictions

Now I’m no expert on addiction, but I do that it’s possible to get addicted to just about anything or anybody. It’s not just drugs like pot and heroin that cause you to lose your mind; just ask anyone who’s unable to kick the smoking habit and find themselves drawn to the nicotine stick even though they it kills; just ask anyone who hits the bottle every day and is blown out of their minds because they’re so drunk they forget who and where there are; or just ask people who are in unhealthy relationships or who have a fetish for just about anything, from unnatural sexual acts to a gluttony for food – they’ll all swear that addictions are the easiest things in the world.

The point is, we all know that smoking and drinking can cause as much, if not more damage than abusing drugs. Smoking is the leading preventable cause of death around the world; it’s so dangerous that even secondhand smoke kills. And alcohol, besides causing cirrhosis of the liver and killing people, also causes death through drunken driving and other accidents that happen because thinking and reasoning are impaired by liquor. Obesity causes diseases like diabetes, strokes and heart attacks which decrease the quality of life and hasten death. Why then are only drugs targeted as the bad guys and deemed illegal? Why not ban cigarettes, alcohol, fast food and other unhealthy foods that are not good for our bodies?

The answer is simple – banning everything unhealthy would lead to an autocratic state, one that goes against the very grain of the democracy that is adopted as a form of government by most nations in the world. So we are given the choice to do as we please as long as we don’t hurt anyone else; we’re free to smoke, drink and eat what we want as long as we don’t disturb the peace or harass or cause harm to anyone. Then why not legalize drugs as well? Why not allow people the freedom to choose to do drugs, just as they are now free to choose to smoke or drink or eat what they want?

Unfortunately, the answer to the ills of this world lies not in banning cigarettes and alcohol or in legalizing drugs. Perhaps drugs are banned because they cause your brains to become addled and bring about chemical changes that could cause psychotic behavior which may be dangerous to society at large. No one sees nicotine and alcohol as problems as severe as drugs, but then, the liquor and tobacco lobbies have become too powerful for any kind of prohibition to come about. It all boils down to who has the most money and hence the most pull in legal matters; it’s the same when it comes to drugs – people kill and commit crimes because at the end of it all, it’s a very profitable business. And in this madness for money, it is health that takes a beating and emerges the real loser.