Re: Drug Gaze

----- Original Message -----
From: "Josh Strawn" <radicalchic68@xxxxxxxxx>
To: <foucault@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Saturday, June 28, 2003 4:47 PM
Subject: Re: Drug Gaze

>i dislike 'pot', i
> don't smoke it--but i have before and i have
> acquintances who indulge. sure it's psychologically
> addictive, sure some people smoke it with tobacco.
> most people DONT smoke pot with tobacco. please, my
> fellow scholars, go back to talking about foucault's
> sense of state, the body politic or what have you, and
> drop this irrelevant, uninforamtive ranting. leave it
> for the anti-drug and pro-legalization binary
> polarities to duke it out with their equally
> ridiculous arguments and skewed statistics...

Certainly what constitutes the norms of use of marijuana or any other
substance is often local, even more so in this case due to the non-legal
status of the drug. For example, it is apparently common practice in
Melbourne to smoke marijuana mixed with tobacco and rolled in cigarette
papers as a kind of joint, whereas here in Adelaide, where production is
considerably greater (and prices lower due to increased supply) because of
decriminalisation, mixing tobacco with it is seen by smokers as "sacrilege"
and furthermore, there is increased use of weed-specific utensils such as
pipes and bongs, and cigarette papers are rarely used, with little
interaction between the cultures of tobacco smoking and marijuana smoking at

Certainly there is a lot of misinformation out there on both sides for
political reasons. It seems that there are lots of reasons why people take
up a habit, and many reasons why they continue to consume the drug.
Sometimes these are physiolological addictions, but often consumption is
associated with specific situations, often boredom or stress, and those will
put pressure on an individual who is trying to quit to resume the practice.
Similarly, there are many reasons why people might choose to give up,
financial, cultural, or legal/punitive.

Certainly it is an interesting topic for discussion but I have not read much
that doesn't fall into the "weed is great" or "weed is evil" categories. A
much more concrete analysis of given situations would seem to be necessary,
but given the political and ideological overdetermination of this issue this
would seem unlikely. Certainly if there are negative reasons why some
people take up the practice -- unemployment induced boredom, for example --
then certainly the approach we should be taking is to address the issue of
unemployment and its causes, and if people still smoke weed after utopia is
achieved, then so be it ...

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