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Marijuana can't cure a bad scene 

Paso Robles

As an old ‘60s counter-culturalist, I should rejoice at the prospect of my state finally legalizing marijuana. Certain things bother me, however, such as the 1,198 alcohol-related driving deaths in California in 2008. I have to assume that if we legalize marijuana, the number of DUIs, and their attendant deaths, will also increase. Legalization should be accompanied by increased enforcement and penalties for DUIs. This prospect, however, raises a largely overlooked question. What is it about American society that drives so many people to take expensive, unhealthy, mood-altering drugs to escape its reality, regardless of the violence the drug trade commits internationally? Much of the U.S population uses illicit drugs, drinks, consumes excessive caffeine, and even still smokes. The vast majority is addicted to equally unhealthy junk food.

I will rejoice when the cold, alienating, irrationally self-destructive society around me is replaced by one in which people live in caring communities; where they live constructive, loving, meaningful, rewarding lives; where the market for drugs and alcohol will simply dry up from lack of interest.

-- Gerald Manata - Paso Robles

-- Gerald Manata - Paso Robles

Readers Poll

How do you feel about the availability of mental health services in SLO County? 

  • There is not enough access, and there needs to be more.
  • There is access but only for those with a lot of money.
  • Most people should be able to afford it if they knew how to find it.
  • People need to learn to get over their issues themselves.

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