Legalizing Marijuana — Why the Majority Are Often Wrong
Be willing to stand in the breach and raise questions. Our society needs more of that.
Most today seem to be indifferent on many subjects until they see a movement toward the majority going along with some trendy idea. My instincts since my late teens have been: when the majority supports something, assume it to be wrong. (Rarely have I found this to be a misguided axiom.)
So, I've been reading articles recently about legalizing recreational use of marijuana nationally. While in principle, I’m not in favor of the “There needs to be a law" position, my concern is people's mentality shifting toward this being a “good idea.” In only 20 years, we've gone from only one out of three supporting legalization to now two out of three supporting it. Just this year, New York, New Jersey, Virginia and New Mexico have passed legalization, with Connecticut, Rhode Island, Minnesota and Delaware also likely to move forward on this before the year is out.
Before addressing my reasons for pushing back on this trend, let's take a look at other issues that have bent to the will of the majority, and when the minority simply pushed back to do the right thing.
After the brief “Spirit of ’76” died out (a mere 3–6-month phenomenon where most colonists supported the American Revolution), the independence effort ramped up in spite of only about one out of three continuing to support the break from England. Most colonists grew weary of war and felt liberty just wasn't worth it. Thank God General Washington and others ignored the majority.
It’s hard to tell how many Americans supported slavery versus abolition in the mid-19th century, but the majority of the SCOTUS gave the nod to slavery in 1857 with the infamous Dred Scott ruling. President Lincoln ignored that decision in issuing the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Well done, sir.
At the Lambeth Conference in 1930, the Anglican Church became the first major Christian denomination to accept contraception — after nearly 1900 years of consistent teaching on this subject! Within a few decades, every single denomination except Catholicism caved to public pressure and went along with this idea — most even touting it as the “responsible” thing to do.
Then in 1968 Pope Paul VI formed a commission of experts to study the subject as many wondered if the Catholic Church would also go along. While we can't know the precise vote on this, anecdotal evidence indicates that about 90% of the commission concluded the Church should change its doctrine and accept contraception. The Pope thanked the commission for their work, prayed about it and issued Humanae Vitae, which eloquently reinforced the Church's long-standing position. This action was a stunning blow to the majority in the developed world, but his foresight has proved to be a stroke of inspiration. (For more on this and some of the subjects below, read my book, God, Sex, Money and Time.)
More recently, public opinion on same-sex “marriage” has dramatically shifted, as many have ignored their own instincts and natural law, largely because they want to seem “open-minded” and not be called names by their peers. (In fairness, once you acquiesce on the contraception issue, it is illogical to oppose same-sex marriage. Intentionally sterile sex is intentionally sterile sex.)
So now here we are with recreational marijuana. Seems harmless, right? One of the biggest factors playing into nearly all societal ills is men who have stepped back and abdicated their role in the family and in society — a change that is fully supported by the so-called feminist movement. Far too many men have lost their natural drive and ambition. But why, physiologically, are so many men eschewing the pursuit of relationship, career and leadership goals? It’s because of pornography, which literally inhibits gray matter in your brain and deadens ambition. Want to know why our government won't do anything about porn? It's because they know 80% of American households have porn in them, in one form or another. To put it bluntly, the majority of Americans don't want politicians to do anything about this.
And now, we are talking about legalizing and increasing availability of a drug which, more than anything else, deadens ambition and drive. We’re considering doubling-down on one of the biggest problems in our society by adding to its causes. (By the way, there is evidence that long-term use of marijuana can cause schizophrenia and other neuroses among those with certain genes. Also, if you know anyone who’s used marijuana over a long period of time, you’ve likely seen their cognitive abilities diminish significantly.)
So, the next time you feel tempted to go along with a trend or with the majority view on something — pause. Very likely, it's a bad idea. In fact, it's probably a horribly, awful idea. Be willing to stand in the breach and raise questions. Our society needs more of that.