Day 20 → Your views on drugs and alcohol.
You know, I went and did a search on this meme last night after finishing up my entry, and it seems as though my set-up for this is insanely plain. The difference between me and mommy bloggers, yes indeed.
So...drugs and alcohol.
Erik and I keep debating the wisdom of legalizing drugs. He is for it. I am ambivalent. I don't believe that legalizing drugs would magically erase the black market from them, or remove the criminal element from their distribution. It doesn't seem logical to me that the folks who are living under-the-table off it now would suddenly desire to be upstanding, tax-paying citizens. Likewise, I'm not exactly sure that customers would suddenly worry about getting it legally. To be certain, there seems to be some issue with just this in states where medical marijuana is legal--folks aren't always going to licensed dispensaries.
Too, while the war on drugs may be a racist construct, the deleterious effects of drug use aren't made up. I have known a few functioning addicts in my time. With few exceptions, however, regular users aren't exactly the creme de la creme of society, looking at achievement levels. And I don't truck with the "marijuana is safer than alcohol, 'cause no one drives while stoned" line, probably because it's so patently false. Accidents involving marijuana intoxication are admittedly not as widespread as those involving alcohol intoxication, but they do happen, and I don't see how legalizing drugs would discourage that. We seem to be experiencing a local surge in DWIs. Do we really need another legal intoxicant?
All that said, it's clear that the War on Drugs desperately needs an overhaul. At the very least, I believe decriminalizing possession is a good idea. Let's go with the libertarian viewpoint on this that you get to fuck up your own body as you please. Locking people up for using is just stupid, and a waste of ever-more-scarcer State resources. It also contributes directly to the breakdown of the Black family (via its role in high incarceration rates of Black men), which increases cycles of poverty and other criminal activity in mostly black neighborhoods. Parity in drug sentencing also needs to be looked at. I think this has been changed recently, but time was that possession of a rock of crack cocaine netted you exponentially more time than possession of powdered cocaine. And that's just idiotic. (There's no difference in sentencing if you wreck your car drunk on beer vs. drunk on tequila, for instance.)
Now, on to alcohol...
I'm reminded of the Barenaked Ladies song "Alcohol":
I thought that alcohol was just for those with nothing else to doI thought that drinking just to get drunk was a waste of precious boozeBut now I know that there's a time and there's a place where I can chooseTo walk the fine line between self-control and self abuse.
I was 28 when I got drunk the first time. I am ridiculously light-weight, it seems. There were a few weekends, when the kids were with their dad, that I'd go out with my best friend and walk that aforementioned fine line.
Y'all, I am the world's most boring drunk. It only takes a vodka tonic and a half to get me there, but more makes it worse. I am fully capable of having a long drunken discussion of homeschooling. Or politics. Or religion. Anything, in other words, but something interesting. I've told Erik that when I get drunk I get really giggly for 15 minutes, and then I fall asleep. I don't actually fall asleep, I just get really sleepy and, as mentioned, really boring.
And the boring thing...well, there you have it. Drinking bored me pretty quickly. I have no interest in drinking to excess again any time soon, so farewell getting drunk and watching bull riding. (And, for that matter, farewell watching bull riding on TV at all, 'cause that's just no fun sober.) I'm a good Episcopalian. I like my wine. I can drink about half a glass of it before abandoning it for something nonalcoholic. Ditto beer. I love Guinness, on tap only, but can only drink half a glass of it. Which kinda sucks, since Guinness on tap is expensive.
Beer, though, is good for milk supply. No lie, one of my friends from high school had to supplement her the whole time she nursed her first daughter. Started out supplementing with daughter number two, absentmindedly made a meal involving Miller Lite (so much for my theory that it has to be good beer) and was able to walk away from the formula and never look back.
So that's my excuse for the occasional bottle of Shiner Bock. Which I can actually drink from the bottle. Really, I love the stuff. It's comparable to chardonnay, which has to be my favorite white wine. And a bottle of it makes me sleepy. Not drunk. Just sleepy.
I have no use for girly drinks (99% of the margaritas out there might as well be spiked Kool-Aid) or cheap beer.
And yes, I was a boring teenager.