DRUGS ARE GREAT/ D.A.G.! Manifesto

Drugs, legal or illegal, are used by millions of people around the world to change consciousness, celebrate, inspire creativity, relieve boredom, enhance sex and to have fun. Using psychoactive substances is a normative experience in every society from the caffeine buzz of a fresh cup of coffee or tea, to the powerful, pain relieving and calming properties of smoking opium, to the incredible rush of energy and focus of methamphetamine, to a gin martini to chill out. Drug experiences enrich our lives, help us get closer to people, work/study, express emotions and relax. Drugs are great!

Matisse painting Laurette's Head With a Coffee Cup Positive drug experiences abound, they’re the lived reality of millions of people but you’d never know it. Rarely are positive drug experiences discussed in public or reported in the mainstream media. In fact, they are intentionally censored. The reason: The United States government is fighting a war on people who use drugs. The drug warriors want us to believe that all drug use is abuse. They say it’s not possible to moderate or to use addictive substances recreationally and people inevitably become violent, addicted and die.

All lies. The war on drugs/people is built on deceit and racism: From “Reefer Madness” (A film linking marijuana use to rape, suicide and insanity), to the idea that drugs are instantly addictive, or crack users are all Black and violence-prone. The mainstream media whips up hysteria about drugs to scare people into support for the drug war, to pass harsh drug laws that punish and incarcerate a disproportionate amount of people of color and to stop us from using drugs. All we hear from government drug warriors and the press are drugs are always dangerous, drugs are bad, people who use drugs are bad and they do bad things.

The drug warriors are fighting for a “Drug-Free America,” a nation where everyone is abstinent from psychoactive substances.

Are you laughing yet? The notion that America could ever be drug-free is absurd. Why? Because people enjoy mind-altering drugs, drugs are global commodities that cross all borders, and the profits the drug trade both licit and illicit generate are ginormous. We will never live in a drug-free world. It’s not going to happen.


The truth squad. Human and civil rights. We have the right to put whatever substances we want into our bodies absent harm to others. The majority of people who use drugs do so safely without hurting anyone. Everyday millions of people have great, nonharmful drug experiences. We have to tell the truth and that means talking candidly about the benefits and the positive effects of drugs. That is what propels people to take drugs in the first place. The D.A.G.! Project seeks to end the shame, stigma and secrecy that surround drug use, especially illicit drugs.

Bob Marley Smoking GanjaILC-blog-On-the-Menu-Vinho-Verde-Wine-Portugal

  1. Great manifesto, Helen!

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