‘The Inquisition’ is one of those morbid curiosities of history. For centuries powerful religious authorities stretched the bounds of inhumanity in oppressing people whose ideologies either threatened their own, or merely differed from it.
We look back in horror of what people will do to other people in the name of some funny old moral idea. I think that in two hundred years time, historians will be fascinated by the lengths the state went to in its attempts to control drug use. The shear harms it does to its own citizens through prohibition.
The war on drugs will be viewed as a political hysteria, a fad, a trick. It will be viewed as an unneccesary harm done to populations by the state. Historians may also come to understand that huge financial interests that motivate drug prohibition: just as in the Inquisition, this is all about a minority who have power, stopping at nothing to prevent the loss of that power.
Future generations will be shocked, as per usual, by humanity’s inhumanity, by man inhumanity to man.
Like the Witch-Trials and so many other moral hysterias: future generations will be bewildered by the irrationality, the moral-blindness, and the ignorance that underpins the war on some people who use some drugs.
As in the inquisitions of the past, the oppressing force does great violence in the name of an obscure moral principle: “taking drugs, even psychedelics, is morally wrong”. But isn’t it morally wrong to lock some one up when they did no harm to others? Isn’t that a greater harm? Isn’t it unjust to deprive people of their liberty and their prosperity simply for exploring their minds?
Our “leaders” are just people. What gives one of those individuals the power to tell you what you can and cannot do with your mind and body? People have explored this stuff for thousands of years, I cannot fathom why the state is so determined to control it.
In our time, it is no longer the Catholic Church who are the main oppressors of liberty. It is the police and the private prison industry, the alcohol and pharmaceutical corporations, the state representatives of the military-industrial complex, and the many economic powers reliant on keeping the population as blind consumerist slaves.
See: ‘Psychedelics: Consumer-Capitalism, Power & Authority’
These are the powers that be, the status quo. Drug prohibition is fueled by their interests: not your interests, nor the interests of wider society.
Like the inquisition,drug prohibition is a form of spiritual oppression.
Psychedelic drugs are known to bring about states of being that users describe as “spiritual”, the very word “psychedelic” means ‘soul revealing’. Many of the users experiment with psychedelics as a part of their personal spiritual practice and to imprison them for doing so is indefensible.
The Catholic Church felt the need to torture and murder the Cathars , a mystical gnostic Christian sect who advocated renouncing worldly goods, following the example of Jesus, and bypassing the corrupt organised religions, in order to get closer to God. It certainly sound pretty similar to our current situation with LSD: a drug used to bring about spiritual experiences, but experiences that also undermine the power-structures controlling society, and the consequent reaction of the state in the form of violent persecution.
There is a community of individuals in this country, thousands strong. If only 1% of this country used psychedelics there would be 60,000 people being criminalised for having done nothing wrong.
This is a form of persecution, this is a form of persecution of a minority religious group, it is immoral and it has to stop. In the name of justice and fairness, Cognitive Liberty UK demands an end to this oppression by decriminalising LSD and Magic Mushrooms.
We term it ‘The American Inquisition’ because, quite frankly, this whole ‘drugs war’ catastrophe was caused by The United States. It is, in essence, a bi-product of America’s fetishistic puritanism: the same puritanism that has spawned these ‘moral panics’ and consequent brutal persecutions for thousands of years.
People searched in vain for thousands of years looking for the secret of turning base metal into gold.
Gold is now worth $51/gram, Cocaine ha a street-value of $50-70/gram.
Since criminalising drugs increases their street-value, it is because of drug prohibition that criminals all over the world have the ability to grow something that is worth its weight in gold.
We invented alchemy, but through such a perverse system that only organised crime gangs can profit from it. The same gangs who lead the world in the oh-so-noble enterprises of sex-trafficking, the illegal arms trade, and God knows what else.
A UN report said “the global drug trade generated an estimated US$321.6 billion in 2003.
There are many vested interests at play in maintaining the war on drugs. A lot of people are making their living from it, a lot of people are making their riches from it, not least of all the criminals at the top.
Since the world drug black-economy is worth so so much, we have to consider that somewhere in the world there are a small group of people who profit from it more than any one else. It makes sense to think that they would rather drugs stay illegal than become legal: if drugs were made legal, the governments of the world would take all their markets, all their profits, etc. Those individuals no doubt carry a great deal of financial and political power, I wonder to what extent they have used it to influence and maintain drug policy over the last century?
Perhaps politicians may fear the wrath of such barons more than the wrath of its own people. With the money at their disposal, I’m sure a few horses-heads could be mustered if ever our PM thought to legalise the market and tax it.
The alchemy of drug-laws manifests in broader terms. There are so many jobs created by the war on drugs that the actually morality of imprisoning human beings is somewhat lost in the frenzy: the lawyers, the police officers, the prison workers, the civil servants, in the end there’s a whole economy in drug-prohibition.
In America we can even see Police Unions (amongst others) lobbying to keep cannabis illegal. Can there be clearer evidence that the war on drugs is motivated by the financial interests of certain industries instead of the public-interest?
If we’re not careful here in Britain, we could end up with an industry of mass-incarceration too. We’ll be just like the land of the free: locking up 1% of our population for nonsense crimes: all to make a few old men a bit richer.
Making more jobs is not the sole responsibility of the government: one of their responsibilities is ensuring that the laws of the land are just and fair. The current drug-policy does real harm to the lives of thousands of people, because it harms them, society is harmed. It is divisive, it is oppressive, and unnecessarily excludes people from contributing to society.
Cognitive Liberty UK asks the UK government to carefully consider the merits of legalising certain drugs, and decriminalising others.
We feel that, of all psychedelics currently banned, a strong case can be made for decriminalising magic mushrooms since:
1. According to >scientific research< , magic mushrooms are the amongst the least harmful of all banned substances. Harms and risks associated with them are a fraction of those associated with alcohol and tobacco, they even safer than cannabis. Despite this, they are currently ‘Class-A’ controlled substances.
2. Research indicates potential therapeutic value of psilocybin mushrooms.
3. Unlike some other psychedelics, magic mushrooms have been used for thousands of years, for religious and mystical purposes, all over the world. Evidence suggests that humans have been using magic mushrooms since around 5000 BC, they have been implicated in some of mankind’s earliest artistic works. Since they grow all over the world, including in the UK, they can be said to be a part of our cultural heritage and birth-rite. Despite this ancient tradition, the Blair regime fully criminalised the possession of psilocybin mushrooms in 2005. We hope that the law being not-long-established, will make it easier to overturn.
4. Unlike other banned substances, the role of magic mushrooms in producing religious, spiritual and mystical experience is incontrovertible.This means that prohibition of these mushrooms is an offense on religious and spiritual freedoms that ought to be safeguarded.
5. Since the mushrooms grow in the wild and on unknowing-peoples’ property, the law is impossible to enforce.
6. Due to the nature of the psychological effects of magic mushrooms they present a very low risk of abuse.
7. They grow wild in the UK and they have done for a very long time. Such ingratitude for a gift from Nature!
Wikipedia: N (; named en) is the fourteenth letter in the ISO basic Latin alphabet. →