Sunday, February 08, 2009

What Michael Phelps Should Say

It's really a shame that Michael Phelps has apologized and groveled for "forgiveness" after being photographed hitting a bong. I understand why, but a golden opportunity was missed, yet again.

Just once, I'd like to see someone in Phelps' position defiantly state: "You know what? No. I won't apologize. Drug prohibition, and the way it is prosecuted, is unjust and inhumane. Its goals have nothing to do with public safety or morality; it's all about enriching the prison-industrial complex, empowering increasingly militarized and hyper-aggressive police forces, and protecting Big Pharma from safe, natural, and cheap competition. The drug warriors should be the ones apologizing to US."

But what kind of message does this send to THE CHILDREN?!?

"1. FUCK the children. Not literally, of course, that's disgusting. But it's not their world, it's ours. That's why we're the grown-ups. We get to do things that are totally inappropriate for kids, like drink, screw, and stay up past 10 PM. Isn't that why we put up with the horrors of puberty, adolescence, and high school? To reap the rewards later? Or was it all just to work in corporate cubicles, pay taxes, and take on a mortgage?

"2. The most important thing to teach children is the capacity to think critically for themselves. I've thought about the reasons for marijuana prohibition and found them wanting. Actually, no - 'utter bullshit' would be more fitting. And since I also believe that self-ownership is inviolable, and that there are higher virtues than passive obedience to unjust laws (which are often but the tyrant's will), I have nothing to apologize or be forgiven for.

"Ultimately, the message it sends to children is that they are endowed by their Creator with the inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. How they choose to exercise those rights, so long as they don't hurt anyone else, is up to THEM."

Seems like a message a 'free country' could get behind, right? But no, of course I'm being naive. No celebrity will put millions on the line in order to defend such silly, antiquated notions as freedom, self-ownership, and independent thought. Too bad.

Read more:
  • "Why Condemn Phelps, When We Ought to Condemn the Laws That Brand Him a Criminal" []
  • "Phelps Takes a Hit" [Washington Post]
  • "Michael Phelps And His Bong - We've All Gone To Pot" []
  • "Michael Phelps' Marijuana Use Puts Focus on Debate Over the Drug" [LA Times]
And finally, "Really?!? With Seth Meyers of SNL":