The Great War of Alcohol against Cannabis

by John Stahl

Northern California
September 5, 2002

      So you think that King George II’s war in Iraq is all about Oil and Money, do you?  Well, you’re all wrong.  This is the Great War of Alcohol against Cannabis.

     The roots of this conflict go way back.  Nearly a thousand years ago, in 1095, Pope Urban II urged the Christian Faithful to embark upon a war to seize control of the Holy Land from the Infidel.  All the great Christian nobles thought this was a great idea.  Motivated by lust for spoils and plunder, this large drunken host of iron-clad warriors comes riding out of the West, spoiling and plundering their way to Jerusalem, which they finally conquer and install with a King of their own selection.  

     All subsequent campaigns, however, were met with increasingly disappointing returns.  Almost all of the many Crusades that followed were routed by the defending Moslems, who considered that they were justly defending the Holy Land from the Infidel.  This conflict between the Judeo-Christian tradition of the West and the faithful of Islam in the East only settles in ever more deeply with each passing generation, with no end in sight.  

     It is fundamentally a very complicated theological conflict instigated by the Catholic Pope of the Christian world of the West against the “heathen” Moslems of the East.  If you consider the similarities and differences between Islam and Christianity, what is the most obvious and profound theological difference between them? Right! It is the Islamic ban on alcohol, as exhorted by Allah through his Prophet Mohammed.  The Moslems fully understood that alcohol was a very dangerous drug.  It can seriously undermine your health; it can impair your judgment; and it makes you belligerent and stupid.  On the other hand, there is no record that Allah found any fault with cannabis, so faithful Moslems to this day avoid alcohol, turning to the benefits of cannabis when they wish to alter their mood.  This is quite different from Christianity, whose Savior drank wine with his Disciples at the Last Supper.  There are many Sects of Christianity, from the Orthodox who drink wine, to the Zealots who drink gin or whisky or vodka, to the Reformed who drink beer, but they all recognize Bacchus as their spiritual father.  

     What the problem comes down to theologically and metaphysically is the classic problem of “How many Angels can dance on the head of a pin?”  Specifically, we want to know whether we can attain the greatest number of Angels dancing on that pin after they have been drinking wine, or after smoking some ganja.  The Moslems have always maintained that a great many more dancing Angels are able to fit on that pin when they are using cannabis, and the Christian world has never been able to dispute it, so they fall back again and again to “the last argument of kings,” which is their cannon.  (Never mind the phallic imagery of them shaking that stick in the faces of weaker people.)

     (Then the clever idea occurred to me to consider that this theological conflict could be looked upon as the Opposition of Bacchus and Ganesh.  But, upon reflection, I had to give it up, because, as everyone knows, the Christian God of the West is not really Bacchus, the God of Wine.  It is Mammon, the God of Money.  And as for the Moslems, everyone knows just as well that there is no god but Allah, so I had to turn to the Hindu Pantheon to find, in Ganesh, a suitable Cannabis God of the East.)

     Now it is clear why those of us who consider that cannabis is far safer and more effective than alcohol, cigarettes, and most pharmaceutical drugs are looked upon as “siding with the enemy” by adopting such a dominant cultural distinction.  This same “sympathy with the opposition” can be seen by the numbers of Black Americans who choose to adopt Islam.  It is easy for them to feel a cultural affinity for Moslems, once they realize that there isn’t much room in the White Man’s Heaven for the likes of the dark brother.  In fact, while we’re at it, not only Blacks, but Hispanics, Asians, Homosexuals, and Pot Smokers (and other riff-raff too numerous and impecunious to mention) needn’t trouble themselves with waving any American flags these days.  Frankly, “they” would just as soon not see you waving any flags at all – certainly not the Red, White, and Blue, but neither the Rasta colors, nor any Rainbows, or Earth Flags.  The True Patriots (the ones with the Money) will wrap themselves up in an ever shrinking American Flag, as they try to control and “own” the whole world for their continuing and increasing personal profit.  (Non-American Internationals who nonetheless consider themselves part of the same Club may simply wrap themselves in their local currency, which has always been perfectly acceptable attire at any Country Club.)

     This is a very, very dangerous game, however, and it is one which has never lasted all that long, historically.  Machiavelli made it clear to the Rulers of the world that it were better to be Feared than Loved, but that hasn’t made the Hot Seat any safer.  And, in today’s world, the rule of armed might is getting harder and harder to sustain.  The overarching problem is that mankind now has such abundant available firepower that any serious confrontation will quickly mean the end of most of life on earth.  It will be a question of whether the ants finally take over the earth, or whether they, too, will finally succumb, forcing the spirit of God, which is Life after all (and not really Money, Power, Drugs, or Oil – Sex is closer to God than any of the others) to start out all over again from viruses and bacteria.  

     The other problem is that it is so very much easier to destroy something than to build it.  To get a clear perspective of last September, just consider Big Sister who has spent all morning patiently building a tower out of building blocks, and then Little Brother comes running in, laughing, and kicks it all down.  Sure, Big Sister can pound Little Brother (Lucy and Linus), but that game has been going on for a million years, and it isn’t going to stop any time soon.  But someone has already observed that the higher the tower, the greater the fall.  

     I was going to say something about wondering why nobody wants to destroy or conquer Canada, to see if there is any lesson there, but then I considered that, among plenty of other conspiracy theories going around, the notion is taken as a given that if (when?) Uncle Sam decides it is time to declare Martial Law and take over complete control of the country, Canada and Mexico would be routinely annexed “just to secure the peace.”  So if there are any lessons here, it is pretty scary to think of what they are.  You have heard that a Crisis is being deliberately manipulated in order to set the stage for a Declaration of Martial Law?

     So what do we do?  Stop pushing those polar opposites to extreme positions.  Let us all drift back towards the center a little bit.  Relax, sip a little wine with your cannabis, or try a little cannabis (vaporized, not smoked) to moderate that whiskey binge.  Let us understand the inescapable connection between Freedom and Tolerance.  You can’t have one without the other.

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