Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Because I got high

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It’s April 20th.  You know…4/20, which is or used to be code for getting high.  Where did the code come from?  Most people out of puberty believe that it is simply an urban myth that caught hold, although a group from San Rafael High School in Marin County stated they they made the term back in the 1970’s when they skipped school to smoke out.  The importance of the date has fluctuated in and out of the trendiness of high school, and this year was a down year.  Only two references, light giggles, and a pronouncement that April 20th was not the only day to smoke pot was heard in my classroom. 

I will fully admit that I’ve started to change my stance on marijuana legalization, mainly because it’s basically already legal here.  I used to be totally against legalization until the crime element started to destroy the forests and create four times the normal level of crime in Ukiah.  You can’t hike in the hills any more because you just might run into a Mexican with an AK-47 or a Bulgarian with nail gun.  However I don’t really see legalization solving a whole lot because  it would have to be nation-wide and the whole taxation situation is totally overblown.  Seriously.  It’s supposed to be illegal now and people still grow it and no taxes are collected.  All of the sudden you demand taxes from growing weed and people will be willing to pay? 

My main concern is the problems with youth in the community, and many youth have a serious problem.  Like alcoholism, weed has become a huge part of student lives.  It’s engrained in the culture and accepted as normality, except that many students can’t handle the normality of a marijuana laced life.  While many argue the similarities between booze and blunts and fail to see a problem, I see a problem with youth constantly using booze and blunts.  Worse, the town sees nothing wrong with it.  The population is so enamored with legalizing marijuana that it totally ignores those that let it run their life.  It’s depressing and pathetic.

But it’s also Ukiah.  This is far from a “just say no” town and dealing with growing families, drug dogs, and card carrying medicinal user students is the norm.  It does a lot for restaurants, hardware stores, and hydroponic shops.  It does nothing positive for anything else in the community.  Salon.com has a nice article about some of the issues surrounding Ukiah and the drug culture.  We live in a beautiful area.  Too bad many are too high to notice. 

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