Everyone is entitled to a fix. If you ask me, this is a constitutionally protected right. Pursuit of Happiness should be annotated however, to "Pursuit of happiness and/or acceptable substitute." Everyone should have a legal right to a calorie free, low-harm drug, like cannabis, or nicotine. It used to be that there was no low-harm option for most of these drugs, because you had to inhale smoke to imbibe them, but that is no longer the case. Cannabis is available as a medicinal grade substance in many states, and can be vaped without combustion. Most nicotine vaping mechanisms suck, but JUUL has figured out the essence of cigarettes, which is to enable nicotine to be free-based, giving the user a pleasant rush, except in a form that doesn't kill your lungs.

Sugar and alcohol are currently the most popular legal drugs available to Americans in the full flower of their constitutional rights. Sugar, of course, is marketed directly to children, and destroys the health and lives of countless American children, many of them poor, who now have non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and type 2 diabetes, diseases that were unheard of in children a generation ago. Alcohol is the social lubricant of choice, is calorie-rich, and similarly destroys the lives of live-rs across the nation, and their livers too. I'm not sure why these awful drugs, at the mere thought of which my bowels begin to rumble and wretch, are so accepted. My skeptic's inclination is to propose that they are legal precisely because they make people fat, and fat people are easy to shame into submission.

Other better safer drugs should be legal and redily available, like over the counter, for anyone who wants to buy them. Advocating for legalizing drugs always brings up the political philosophy question of human freedom, specifically whether people have the right to harm themselves if they want to. If I'm feeling utopian that day, I am inclined to say, yes. People have a right to harm themselves, up to and including suicide. Who are you to say that life is better? You've never been dead by definition, so honestly you just don't know. But then, as a mom, decidedly a non-utopian point of view, I think "what about the children!" Because yes, it's not fair that children can wind up accidentally addicted to substances that harm them, and it's too radical to say that they should be able to choose to harm themselves.

So what the framework of the constitution provides for, I think, is for any adult to be able to choose any drug that he or she wants. And if that is too radical for you, surely you would agree with me that adults should be able to choose any low-harm drug of their choice. A low-harm drug can't even be said to be an addiction, if you ask me. I would call a low-harm drug a mere dependency. I am 100% dependent to my morning coffee. And if I had my druthers, I would be dependent on cannabis for my sciatica, but honestly it's just not in the budget to spend what it currently costs for medicinal cannabis, given how early we are in the adoption cycle, and the fact that I have a budget and need to save for things like retirement and college.

But I digress. The other major political philosophy question that comes up when one advocates for legal low-harm drugs is the question of virtue. Virtue has been practically eliminated from the modern English vocabulary. It's just not a word that people use, but it nonetheless is a concept disguised in the politically castrated language of "wellness," something anyone with eyes and ears is attuned to these days. The wellness hawks, new age stoics as they are, say something like, "If you're healthy, you should be happy, so you shouldn't need a 'fix,' right?" It used to be a slam dunk for these new age stoics, because smoke is disgusting and makes people disgusting. MDMA, cocaine, mushrooms, etc. are just not sustainable so they don't really qualify as a "fix" anyways. But now that low-harm is truly available for some truly good fixes, the wellness people don't know which was is up anymore.

AHHHHH... but this is where I come in, folks. Because I actually have a degree in this shit. I have the degree that allows me to answer questions about what constitutes "health" and "happiness" in the holistic sense, although many people turn to their personal trainers to answer this question for them, I can only assume. Have you read Plato's Republic seventeen times? No, I doubt you have. And while being good at philosophy never made me bad at math (it was bulimia and starvation that made me bad at math in high school, whereas I was once very very good at math), it is my philosophy degree that has precluded me from being assigned the interesting work in my professional life. The stench of righteousness and political non-castration is something the wellness people can smell, even if they don't know how to think anymore. But this question, the "wellness" question, I own it.

So, let's do this. Let's skip the most important part of The Republic, where Socrates points out that the whole enterprise is a failed venture at the outset, and fast forward to the moral of the story: If your soul, the very thing by which you live your life, is in shambles, then no amount of riches and rewards will make you happy. Therefore, virtue is in some sense its own reward!. All will be lost on you if your soul is in shambles, because you, by your very nature, by your very there-being everywhere, will ruin it, by definition. We all know these people. For the most part, they inherited the capital. The "bloody heirloom" as Ta-Nehasi would say. And though this truth can hardly be in question, the inverse is not therefore true. If your soul is in fine health, it does not therefore follow that you will be happy. Because hap-piness has an element of chance in it, and if by chance you have no capital (or get hit by a bus) you will not be happy, though you may be potentially virtuous.

The difference between heaven and earth is simple, if you think about it. Just like the health app on my iphone says (and I only know this because my toddler plays it over and over again): It can feel complicated, but it's really quite simple. In heaven, the beautiful souls reap the rewards they deserve. On earth, unjust distribution of wealth, status and power, means that the beautiful souls don't always get their rewards, and ugly rotten souls that should send you running away screaming parade around in beautiful garb and masks. And that, my friends, is why cannabis and JUUL should forever and always be available to every man, woman and mature young adult on earth. Because life is a bitch, but that doesn't mean you should need to die to feel good.