There is some scientific evidence to suggest that if your life is going along relatively smoothly with physical health, a moral outlook, a useful education, a few good friends, good social interaction, a good paying job, financial responsibility, a happy marriage, and generally a feeling that you are contributing to society in some meaningful way that the probability that you will need or do drugs is minimal. Basically if you are moral, eat healthy, have drug free good friends, and are gainfully employed then you will seldom have a serious drug habit.
But seriously ask yourself whether society or any social program can offer equal opportunity to achieve such desirable happiness or circumstances once you have fallen through the cracks and become a habitual drug user? To gain desirable circumstances requires time, effort, sacrifice, achievement, optimization of ability, money, a moral family, and a useful educational background. Just do what feels good or follow your passion will definitely not work under most circumstances. Life is not fair for most and those are the humans more prone to drug use.
On the other hand if you are in bad physical health, don’t have a moral family, have dysfunctional friends who gamble, are promiscuous, and are financially unstable then you are in danger. If you are bad at social interaction, are badly educated, depressed, have a lousy job or no job at all, are unhappily married or not married at all, and feel that you are contributing nothing to society then drugs can be a very tempting escape mechanism to try and feel good for a change.
Increasingly western society is being filled with dysfunctional individuals isolated from wholesome human contact who do drugs to try and escape their desperate isolated or confusing lives. Others socialize with dysfunctional hedonistic friends who are lousy role models to imitate. When teenage and adult peer pressure is hedonistic then it is just a question of time before you crash and burn and potentially ruin your life and whatever future you still have ahead of you.
A society filled with rehab centers is not a very stable society and the more drugs that are legalized the greater will be the percentage of humans using them on a regular basis which many now still call an addiction problem. The opiod crisis is just the tip of the legal and illegal iceberg and legalizing all drugs as in Portugal will unfortunately eventually result in a large percentage of the largely hedonistic drug taking population being bad contributing members to society.
Maybe eventually an unhappy dysfunctional human workforce will largely be replaced with dependable, trustworthy, competent robots. What may then happen is that most of the population will be strung out on mind altering drugs most of the time and on government welfare. There is an old saying which still applies in modern times even though you don’t have to believe in devils. “Idle minds and hands are the devil’s workshop”. Simply put, if you have nothing useful to do in life then you will probably get yourself into trouble personally and socially.
If drugs are legalized then there will be more children, students, nannies, teachers, vocational and professional workers in responsible positions strung out on drugs and making the workforce more dangerous and inefficient than it already is. Can any nation with legalized drugs survive and be powerful, respected, and morally functional in other than a third world status? I highly doubt that this is possible.
I hope the crisis never becomes so acute that drug pushers or dealers will have to be executed but that may be the only sane alternative to continuing to do nothing constructive and gradually letting the nation slide into a mind altering drug haze both legal and illegal.
If there is a moral to be gleaned from history it is- “don’t become a hedonistic individual and participate in a hedonistic society”. Hedonistic individuals and societies don’t last long.
Hedonistic: adj. pursuing excessive pleasure
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