An interesting article in the New York Times concerning the use of Psilocybin in treating depression. The article references a recent study noting that the chemical changes in the brain occurring during a trip on mushrooms can serve sort of like a “hot reboot” on a computer. Such treatment may help depressed individuals end their cyclical patterns of negative thinking. I am, of course, a serious advocate for the legalization of all drugs, regardless of whether or not a politically suppressed medical benefit for the substance exists. It is comforting nevertheless to see the case for medical research applied to another Schedule I controlled substance besides marijuana.
I still, however, contend that the case for universal legalization should not hinge upon whether or not there is a genuine medical use for the substance. If we can only persuade our government to decriminalize a substance on the basis that it could make the population “happy,” with minimal risk to the patient, we may be signing up for Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World rather than a libertarian utopia.
I’m sure I will flesh this topic out more in time, but as a parting note, please consider whether or not the rationale behind a legal policy decision should have any bearing in the dialogue. For example, should we support efforts to legalize LSD even if the government’s agenda for legalization includes topics such as mind control, behavioral adjustment in correctional institutions, super soldiers, or men who stare at goats?