The Need for Speed

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Today's New York Times carries a quite sensible op-ed piece by a Persian Gulf War pilot defending the military's use of amphetamines. The only problem is that he insists on calling Dexedrine taken to combat fatigue and enhance alertness a "medication." Would he use the same term to describe a cup of coffee or a cigarette? In the context of work, these stimulants serve the same basic function as the Dexedrine taken by pilots (though not as effectively). The fact that a drug is dispensed by doctors does not make it a treatment for an illness, but that seems to be the only guise in which we can accept most psychoactive substances.

NEXT: Drug Czar Strikes Again

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  1. This once again illustrates the government’s hypocritcal stance on drugs. As long as you take the ones that they say are OK, when they say they are OK, and buy them from a large pharmaceutical company everything is fine. Smoke a joint(something with FAR fewer side effects than any amphetamines) though, and you are screwed.

  2. Ever notice that reason is so fun to read when you’re high?

  3. “that seems to be the only guise in which we can accept most psychoactive substances.” Indeed. Does a bottle of Dexedrine not state “Do not operate heavy machinery while taking this medication”? An F-16 fighter-bomber is quite heavy. It is revealing of our dominant conservative culture fostered mainly by our government that it is acceptable to use psychoactive substances to solve every problem a person may have, and now may be used for war, as long as you buy it from a pharmaceutical company. But heaven forbid a benign drug like marijuana be used for something as useless as relieving the trauma that synthetic pharmaceuticals cause to the body of cancer patients. Or even worse, simply to feel good.

  4. I feel the need…the need for speed!

  5. Reading Reason when you’re high…after the Patriot Act, I would not even discuss such things on the net.

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