Maturity and Permanent Adolescence in Conservative Journals on Drug Legalization


The Weekly Standard, though younger in years, takes a jab (unknowingly…probably) at their older conservative magazine brother National Review, apparent in the way the two mags, in their unsigned front-of-the-book sections, discussed the defeat of various marijuana legalization measures in this year's election.

The Standard wrote of "permanent adolescents agitating for marijuana legalization" who "took a 'thumpin' at the polls" and ended with (in a segment only available in the print mag's November 20 issue) saying that this "means a majority of the voters…must have been aware of the evidence showing that marijuana use provides no health benefits, especially for sick people."

Got that? Especially for sick people! (By the by, see the links on this page from Americans for Safe Access on the question of marijuana's health benefits, far better understood by researchers than either voters or this unnamed Standard writer.) The Standard concludes with some voter turnout analysis: "The people most likely to go vote for legalizing pot must have stayed home on Election Day, watching Cheech and Chong movies and dealing with a serious case of the munchies." Certainly, few could deny that this all represents a sophisticated and un-adolescent take on important public policy issues on the Standard's part…..

Meanwhile, the "permanent adolescents" over at National Review wrote (in "The Week" segment of their December 4 issue, which I can't find online): "As pro-pot conservatives in Gotham we have a peculiar perspective, but permit us to note that 44 percent [which a Nevada pot legalization initiative won] is better than any New York Republican running for statewide office did this year. And Nevada potheads, unlike New York Republicans, are becoming more numerous."