Do new data dictate a need to change course?
Have you ever done what you thought was the correct thing to do, only to find out you acted on bad information? Logic suggests a change of course which is amply illustrated by this old Sea Story:
A battleship and its proud captain were sailing home at night when a lookout shouted, "Captain, theres a light off our port bow and it looks like it is aiming right at us!"
The captain ordered this signal sent, "You are on a collision course with my ship. Change your course 30-degrees west!"
A signal came back “No, you change course 30-degrees east.”
“I am a Royal Navy Captain; you will do as I command!"
"Sir, congratulations on your rank; however, I am a second-class seaman, manning a lighthouse."
The philosopher, Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), would assert the captain had a Moral Imperative to change course, to act on the latest and best information available and, thereby, save his crew and his ship from running aground.
That brings us to the subject of Cannabis (AKA Marijuana or MJ). In 2012, the Obama reelection campaign needed to bring out the youth vote in Colorado. Teaming with Big MJ, Amendment 64 (A64), to legalize recreational MJ, was put on the ballot. President Obama won easily and A64 was passed.
But, since 2012, several medical studies, to include those conducted by the US Surgeon General reveal todays MJ has been reformulated by Big MJs chemists so that tetrahydrocannabino (THC), the mind-altering chemical in MJ, is now five times more powerful than the MJ smoked by the hippies of the 1960s. Moreover, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports the use of "vaping" products that contain cannabidiol (CBD) is causing "Severe, Acute Pulmonary Disease."
Since legalization, Colorados experience with MJ has not been good. In fact, so bad that Rocky Mountain Public-TV, which is generally regarded as liberal, put its Alfred I. Dupont-Columbia Award-winning investigative reporter, John Ferrugia, on the MJ story. See: https://video.rmpbs.org/video/cultivating-crime-q80mih/ and https://video.rmpbs.org/video/rmpbs-specials-insight-john-ferrugia-marajuana-state-high/
If Immanuel Kant were still alive, he would probably say all elected officials have a Moral Imperative to watch the Rocky Mountain PBS-TV series about MJ. Moreover, they would have a "duty" to stop all support for MJ and refer A64 back to the voters for a more enlightened vote.
Proponents of MJ ask, "Why should MJ be banned when alcohol and tobacco are legal?" Nothing good can be said about tobacco except to say tobacco is Montezumas Revenge for the diseases the Europeans brought this Continent.
But, from the dawn of humankind, alcohol played a role making bread, making water safer to drink, and as a disinfectant. So, maybe that is why society gives alcohol a pass. Benjamin Franklin said, "Beer is a sign that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
The best argument against MJ is to say the ravages of alcohol and tobacco are horrible enough. Why add a third ravage?
Unfortunately, legal MJ pays a lot of the "sin taxes" so beloved by many elected officials. But Kant would argue officials have a "duty" to change course and not let their constituents run aground on the mind-bending rocky shoals of Big MJ. We report. You decide.
©2019. William Hamilton.
William Hamilton, is a laureate of the Oklahoma Military Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame, the Nebraska Aviation Hall of Fame, the Colorado Aviation Hall of Fame, and the Oklahoma University Army ROTC Wall of Fame. Dr. Hamilton is the author of Formula for Failure in Vietnam: The Folly of Limited Warfare, McFarland Books, (2019). For pre-publication orders: Toll free: (800) 253-2187 "Central View," can also be seen at: www.central-view.com.