Hey, so maybe the title of this blog post sounds self-centered to you. What do you expect, dude? The author, moi, is a 65 year-old baby boomer. I'm proudly part of the Me Generation.
So naturally I see everything as revolving around the Flower Child center of the universe that we baby boomers brought into being back in the 60's.
Me especially, since I was in college at San Jose State University from 1966 to 1971.
You know, the Bay Area not-Stanford and not-UC Berkeley. The ugly duckling to the south. Which for me and my friends was just a short 57' VW bug smoke-filled drive away from San Francisco: Haight-Ashbury, Winterland, Fillmore, all things psychedelically bright and beautiful.
We weren't smoking cigarettes.
Oh no, we were the freaks, the hippies, the potheads, the stoners, who brought marijuana out of the societal shadows and made it, if not respectable, damn ubiquitous for our generation.
In a sense -- and I can understand if you'd like to make that "In a pitifully marginal sense" -- we were akin to the courageous demonstrators of the Civil Rights movement, the determined feminists of the Women's Rights movement, the brave initiators of the Gay Rights movement, the in-your-face protestors of the Anti-Vietnam War movement.
We set out to change society one toke at a time.
Whether zoning out to Cream, Jefferson Airplane, and Hendrix, or demonstrating that frisbee skills are not lessened one bit by being high (nor driving skills, in my experience), we were unknowingly laying the groundwork for what now seems to be a groundswell of support for changing this nation's marijuana laws.
Enough signatures have been gathered to get on the ballot. Fund-raising seems to be going well. Endorsements are streaming in -- such as from the Oregon State Council for Retired Citizens, Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, and Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Also, the Northwest Oregon Labor Council.
Still, we can't take it for granted that the legalization initiative will pass.
Remember: this is about ME. And my generation. We're getting old. No, geez, we are old.
We deserve the honor that we'll bestow upon ourselves when weed is legalized, state by state. We'll be able to tell our grandchildren...
"Honey, when you grow up your grandpappy made it possible for you to enjoy pot without fear of the law -- a far cry from how it was in the olden times. Why, did I ever tell you..."
"Mom, MOM! Come quick! Make Grandpa Brian stop talking about his drug days. I'm afraid he's going to make me listen to his LSD stories AGAIN!"
And why not, grandchild? I was Jesus personified back in the 60's (outwardly at least). Am I not entitled to retell the gospel of my exploits with cannabis and other mind-altering substances?
In the case of marijuana, at least, a substance that cries out for sensible legalization, as ably detailed in a recent series of New York Times editorials. This shows that the times are indeed a'changing when it comes to legalizing pot.
Which is estimated to bring in $38 million each year in taxes to benefit Oregon's schools, police, drug treatment, drug prevention and mental health programs.
A great reason, among many, to legalize marijuana. Let's just keep in mind this central reason: to honor the greatest (pot-smoking) generation, us baby boomers.