Wednesday, June 05, 2019

“Oakland Officials Decriminalize Psychedelics”—at long last adults will have a choice of intoxicants rather than alcohol

By SJ Otto
I am really glad to see this issue coming up to a vote in various cities. (The article below is about Oakland). To be honest I never thought I would see this happen. But I couldn’t be happier. I have had problems with alcohol in the past. For those who are un-aware, alcohol causes some very bad health problems, with heavy use.[1] And yet alcohol is the only powerful mind altering drug that is legal for all of us to use. I am glad that marijuana is being legalized in various forms—some for recreation, some for medical use. But I don’t like marijuana. Its effects are too difficult for me. The drug mostly makes me feel spacey. It doesn’t bring me a feeling of euphoria.
In small amounts, alcohol does create a feeling of euphoria, but it also creates a kind of sloppy state, where a person looses his/her sense of judgement. In simple language, it makes us act stupid. I like some of the effects of alcohol, but it is hard on my liver and creates other health problems.
My favourite of those drugs are mushrooms, shrooms or as we used to call it: psilocybin. The drug is like a very mild version of LSD. It lacks LSD’s hallucination type qualities. It does cause euphoria, which is something I like in a drug or intoxicating experience. That drug is also easier on the liver and causes far fewer health problems than alcohol. It has not been that easy to find locally here in Kansas, but if it were legal that could all change.
Allowing adults to legally use herbal highs, as psilocybin mushrooms, peyote and ayahuasca just makes sense. This would help me a lot. I have spent a lot of time in rehab places such as AA meetings. At some point I decided to give up and just try to use alcohol sparingly rather than total abstinence. Total abstinence is just not for me. Life is about developing life styles and I believe that a free people in a free society should have choices as to how they live.
People with narrow minded religious views on drug use don’t have the right to legislate how the rest of us should live. They have learned from the era of prohibition that banning alcohol will never work. But for those of us who seek occasional intoxication, we should have other choices than just alcohol.
We may be on the horizons of drug law changes that finally make sense and allows adults the freedom of choice. That time is long overdue. The following is from Marijuana Moment:   

Oakland Officials Decriminalize Psychedelics And Say They’ll Work To Legalize Sales Next

Oakland, California may become the first city in the United States to legalize the distribution and sale of psychedelic drugs, including psilocybin mushrooms and ayahuasca, in a way similar to how the city was the first to normalize commercial medical marijuana sales.
Much has to happen before that broader drug policy reform becomes a reality, but the Oakland City Council took a decisive first step on Tuesday when it voted 6 to 0 to approve a measure decriminalizing the possession of “entheogenic” plant- and fungi-based substances, also including mescaline and ibogaine.
Such plants have therapeutic potential in treating mental health conditions like addiction, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a slowly but steadily growing chorus of researchers and experts, but access to patients remains risky illegal behavior under current federal and state laws prohibiting them.
Under the terms of the unanimously approved Oakland resolution, “entheogenic plant practices,” including ayahuasca ceremonies and the consumption of mushrooms, are now “amongst the lowest priority” for law enforcement, and “any city funds or resources to assist in the enforcement of laws imposing criminal penalties” for adult use and possession is restricted.
In the immediate term, Decriminalize Nature Oakland, which led the charge to build support for the measure, will run similar campaigns in other California cities. The first will be next door in Berkeley, said Larry Norris, a cofounder of Decriminalize Nature.
“People see this, they can see we brought a community out, we made a resolution happen,” he told Marijuana Moment.
For the rest click here.

[1] For an example of health problems see: “Health Risks of Chronic Heavy Drinking.”

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