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Thread: Commentary on Phelps and Pot...


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    Commentary on Phelps and Pot...

    Forgive me if there is already another thread on this subject. I only did a quick scan of the forums, didn't see one and now I've started my own...

    *************************

    Michael Phelps is a champion. And apparently he smokes or has smoked pot. We know this now because a tabloid magazine has printed a picture of him with a bong in his mouth and the mainstream media has aired the story.

    Phelps issued an obligatory formal apology. He didn't really have a choice. His people (e.g. publicist, PR person, etc.) most likely orchestrated the whole thing.

    I, for one, wish he wouldn't have apologized or characterized his actions as a mistake or error in judgement. Nope. I wish he would have issued a statement expressing regret that someone with ill intentions sold a photograph of him to a tabloid.

    If Phelps did a Punky Brewster (I'm dating myself) and was a spokesperson for the "Just Say No" campaign then the apology would be necessary and there would be shame here. But he is just a college aged guy who happened to achieve greatness because of what he can do in a swimming pool. The fact that, during his free time (while not operating heavy farm equipment), he inhaled the smoke from a plant, for the purpose of chilling out, does not take away from his greatness and is quite frankly- irrelevant.

    I believe that if Phelps had been a bit more defiant that this would have led to healthy dialogue on this subject. The fact that some prosecutor is considering bringing criminal charges against Phelps serves as proof in my mind that dialogue and reeducation are needed and that existing laws should be reexamined and changed.

    G

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blair View Post
    Your avatar is rather fitting for this thread.
    haha

  4. #3

    Phelps as Pot Spokesman

    I don't know that Michael Phelps needs to be the spokesman for the legalization of maijuana. I quit touching the stuff years ago, not because I think it's bad, but only because it is illegal. I felt that I should comply with the law even though I don't necessarily agree with it.

    What's really sad is that some little piece of exrement dedided to take a photo of this very young man, without considering the consequenses. Perhaps he considered the damage to Phelps, but just did not care. It is also indicitive of our decline with regard to what is considered newsworthy.

    Apparently, there is no crime in South Carolina, which is the only legitimate explanation as to why he would be prosecuted. Usually, these prosecutors, or law enforcement officers who want to make a name for themselves end up regretting their poor judgement and blind ambition. (Michael Nifong ring any bells?)

    I wish that we would allow our young people to grow up and be allowed to make mistakes without the glare of the media. Thank goodness I did not have to face this kind of scrutiny every time I got drunk (every week), smoked pot (not often), or woke up wearing a camisole (only once). I am also thankful that every person walking around did not have a camera with them.

    What kind of adult creep conducts an interview with a child such as Miley Cirrus, and feels compelled and jutified in asking her if she is a virgin. Oh by the way, yesterday I learned that she hates Asians. We are sick country.

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    There is another thread.

    Regardless of your personal feelings about pot smoking and it's legality, Phelps is a role model who did something illegal.

    I care less about the fact that a role model did it then the fact that a great athlete is so careless with their body (he has also had past alcohol problems). Swimming is a sport with very low tolerances for error - thousandths of a second are the difference in a gold and silver medal and he's hitting a bong!

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    I can't believe this issue still has legs.
    Geo, I agree, typically a youngster would shrug it off. But he has too much at $take to remain silent.
    Scooter, he probably would have been ejected if it had shown up on his tox screen. So after all the olympic dust has settled, the guy wants a hit, not a factor imo.

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    The Olympics may only happen every 4 years, but qualifying finals, national meets, etc. are on a different schedule. If pot makes you ineligible, I am even madder at him for throwing his sports career away then I was before!

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    thrown away is a pretty big leap.

  11. #8
    It is amazing to me how many people exceed the speed limit, roll through stop signs, and are less than honest on their tax returns yet beat the drum of illegality on pot. Phelps is national hero and the slimeball who took the photo can't diminish his greatness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    There is another thread.

    Regardless of your personal feelings about pot smoking and it's legality, Phelps is a role model who did something illegal.

    I care less about the fact that a role model did it then the fact that a great athlete is so careless with their body (he has also had past alcohol problems). Swimming is a sport with very low tolerances for error - thousandths of a second are the difference in a gold and silver medal and he's hitting a bong!
    Careless with his body? I get what you are saying but it is a slippery slope. The same logic can be applied if he eats at McDonald's or doesn't get adequate sleep.

    Alcohol problems? I know the guy got a DUI (I wish I didn't know it- it is none of my business which is a subpoint in this discussion) but does he really have alcohol problems? I would venture to guess that if all of us when we were college aged were held to the standards we are holding this guy to that most of us would be eligible for the "past alcohol problems" label.

    We don't see a picture of Phelps chugging a can of Budweiser because lobbyists in this country were successful in persuading lawmakers that alcohol is an ok drug. It wouldn't be news if Phelps ingested a mind altering drug if the pharma companies convinced the FDA, the lawmakers and the MD's that that their drug was ok.

    I really see this whole thing as a "kids will be kids" story. This to me is about as serious as a speeding infraction on a country road when no one was around. Was it illegal? Yep. The smartest thing to do? Nope. But it was just a young guy unwinding. And it is a shame we know about it. I do not believe he owes us an apology. That said, I understand why he HAS to apologize. It's the PR machine.
    Last edited by Geo; 02-04-2009 at 12:15 PM.

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    I certainly don't think it's a "slippery slope" to say that an Olympic athlete has different dietary and medication standards than the general population ............. or that someone who got a DUI while underage has an alcohol problem.

    The thrown away comment was because John R said he could be disqualified if pot shows up on his drug screens - which seems odd, but if that is true, he's even dumber than I thought. At that point, he's not "some kid" relaxing w/ something people think should be legal but isn't, he's an Olympian disqualifying himself from competition.
    Last edited by scooterbug44; 02-04-2009 at 12:47 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by John R View Post
    thrown away is a pretty big leap.
    A pretty big leap indeed, JR.

    And Geo, I agree with you, as well. Marijuana is a weed, an herb with some unusual properties that some people find appealing. In my youth... But I am an old man now and with this era of my life left far behind, I just laugh at people who find this substance so offensive. I never have and never will.

    The US began it's "War On Drugs" (a gargantuan waste of taxpayer money in my opinion) in the late '30s with the Marijuana Tax Stamp Act after Congress watched the movie "Reefer Madness". I got a good laugh while watching this movie when I was a teenager during health class in high school 40 years ago.

    Seventy years ago our illustrious legislative body made a rediculous movie into a rediculous law,and we still haven't had the courage to debate the truth of the actual issues surrounding this simple weed for fear of the hammer of uninformed, uneducated public opinion and the rath of some over-zealous, politically ambitous prosecutor falling on your head.

    OK, that's the end of the tirade portion of my post. How about this:

    We legalize all illicit drugs (and I don't think marijuana legitimately falls into this catagory), tax them out the wazoo, put thousands back to work (legalizing pot alone would put thousands of farmers back to work), and eliminate the national debt. We could actually HELP those with real problems of drug addiction instead of filling our prisons with sick, helpless people.

    Rehab is much less expensive than warehousing real drug abusers (and I don't think the occasional pot smoker falls into this catagory either) at taxpayers expense. Billions of our dollars are spent every year in this warehousing process. This could also save billions of dollars each year that we waste on our miserably failed "War On Drugs".

    Just one man's opinion...discuss!!
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    I guess I am in an argumentative mood today.
    (cue well deserved smart alec remarks like, "Today?")



    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    I certainly don't think it's a "slippery slope" to say that an Olympic athlete has different dietary and medication standards than the general population.
    Neither do I but I don't think that's what you said.


    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    ........... or that someone who got a DUI while underage has an alcohol problem.
    I don't think it is necessarily an alcohol problem (but it might be). Without knowing more I can only share the opinion that this was a judgement issue which created a legal problem and thankfully, no one was hurt.

    It is a stretch but what if we found out that it was the first time he ever drank and he blew a .08 and he was 20 years old at the time? The problem is that he drove the car. The alcohol problem isn't there in this case.


    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    The thrown away comment was because John R said he could be disqualified if pot shows up on his drug screens - which seems odd, but if that is true, he's even dumber than I thought.
    I suspect the guy isn't dumb and knows when he can take a couple harmless hits between swim meets. This could be his off season. Or maybe I give him too much credit. Who knows?
    Last edited by Geo; 02-04-2009 at 12:51 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    I certainly don't think it's a "slippery slope" to say that an Olympic athlete has different dietary and medication standards than the general population ............. or that someone who got a DUI while underage has an alcohol problem.

    The thrown away comment was because John R said he could be disqualified if pot shows up on his drug screens - which seems odd, but if that is true, he's even dumber than I thought. At that point, he's not "some kid" relaxing w/ something people think should be legal but isn't, he's an Olympian disqualifying himself from competition.
    I think that bong hits are on the IOC's and WADA's list of banned substances, but if my memory is correct it hasn't always been that way, because weed is not a performance enhancing drug. Especially if it makes you eat too many Doritos. Anyway here is the AP's take on it:

    LAUSANNE, Switzerland The International Olympic Committee expressed confidence Monday that Michael Phelps will learn from his "inappropriate behavior" and continue to serve as a role model after a British newspaper published a photo of him inhaling from a marijuana pipe.

    Phelps, who won a record eight gold medals at last year's Beijing Olympics, apologized and acknowledged "regrettable behavior" after the picture was published Sunday by the tabloid News of the World.

    "Michael Phelps is a great Olympic champion," the IOC said in a statement e-mailed to The Associated Press on Monday. "He apologized for his inappropriate behavior. We have no reason to doubt his sincerity and his commitment to continue to act as a role model."

    During the Beijing Olympics, IOC president Jacques Rogge called Phelps "the icon of the games."

    Marijuana is viewed differently from performance-enhancing drugs under World Anti-Doping Agency rules. An athlete is subject to WADA sanctions only for a positive test that occurs during competition periods.

    The News of the World said the picture was taken during a November house party while Phelps was visiting the University of South Carolina.

    The party occurred nearly three months after the Olympics while Phelps was taking a long break from training, and his actions should have no impact on the medals he won in. Beijing.

    He has never tested positive for banned substances and the case is unlikely to fall under any doping rules.
    Proud to practice indoctrination
    at least when it comes to the GATOR NATION

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    That makes it better, so I will change the "throwing away his career" to "unwisely messing w/ his health".

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    Geo, I agree. The reason that Phelps was so apologetic had to be to save face for his sponsors. Even cheeba won't make you want to walk away from sponsorships.
    "It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time."

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    "Cheeba"...What! I must be getting old. I've never heard it called that before just now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by full time View Post
    Most of the swimmers I know (and I've known some of the best) are hard partiers. I don't begrudge a swimmer wishing to partake. Problem for Phelps is he's a public figure who is an icon to many children. Answering a kid's (under 10) questions about Phelps, bongs and weed is really awkward and uncool. He needs to show a little more restraint in his private life so that his dirty laundry doesn't explode on the public scene.
    Or not allow idiot friends or acquaintences to take pictures of him while indulging. But I guess it may be difficult to be completely aware of your surroundings while buzzed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by analogman View Post
    "Cheeba"...What! I must be getting old. I've never heard it called that before just now.
    I had never heard it either until it appeared in a thread in the lounge.

    Cheeba sounds like the name of a Chihuahua that won the Westminster.
    "It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time."

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    Quote Originally Posted by traderx View Post
    I had never heard it either until it appeared in a thread in the lounge.

    Cheeba sounds like the name of a Chihuahua that won the Westminster.
    First time I ever heard this reference was in high school when I first listened to the Beastie Boys' masterpiece Paul's Boutique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Geo View Post
    First time I ever heard this reference was in high school when I first listened to the Beastie Boys' masterpiece Paul's Boutique.
    Ah, I get it now. I never got into the Beastie Boys. Too over the top for me. The Beach Boys is as rowdy as I get.
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    Speaking of cheeba, did anyone catch the special on MSNBC..... I think it was called Pot, Inc. ? Only caught parts of it, but it was very interesting. I hope they'll air it again.

  30. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by analogman View Post
    Ah, I get it now. I never got into the Beastie Boys. Too over the top for me. The Beach Boys is as rowdy as I get.
    The Beach Boys called it Rhonda.
    "It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time."

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    Quote Originally Posted by full time View Post
    Most of the swimmers I know (and I've known some of the best) are hard partiers. I don't begrudge a swimmer wishing to partake. Problem for Phelps is he's a public figure who is an icon to many children. Answering a kid's (under 10) questions about Phelps, bongs and weed is really awkward and uncool. He needs to show a little more restraint in his private life so that his dirty laundry doesn't explode on the public scene.
    I must have killed too many brain cells at the Swim House parties - Elizabeth Hasslebeck and I are on the same side of an argument!

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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    I must have killed too many brain cells at the Swim House parties - Elizabeth Hasslebeck and I are on the same side of an argument!
    Oh that would drive me to drink.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Geo View Post
    I guess I am in an argumentative mood today.
    (cue well deserved smart alec remarks like, "Today?")

    I believe that if Phelps had been a bit more defiant that this would have led to healthy dialogue on this subject.
    Oh well, you opened the argumentative "can of worms" and I attempted to dump the worms out on the table for a closer look, but I guess nobody wants to play with them. So much for a healthy dialogue. Too taboo I think, huh?

    Think about it folks. Hundreds of billions of dollars wasted over several generations. Does this make sense to anyone out there? Someone, anyone? The silence is deafening, but speaks volumes about our society, doesn't it? Political correctness run amok!

    Just ignoring the subject won't make it go away...
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    Quote Originally Posted by analogman View Post
    Oh well, you opened the argumentative "can of worms" and I attempted to dump the worms out on the table for a closer look, but I guess nobody wants to play with them. So much for a healthy dialogue. Too taboo I think, huh?

    Think about it folks. Hundreds of billions of dollars waisted over several generations. Does this make sense to anyone out there? Someone, anyone? The silence is deafening, but speaks volumes about our society, doesn't it? Political correctness run amok!

    Just ignoring the subject won't make it go away...
    I think the interesting part is that no one is jumping on the keep it illegal platform. No impassioned stories of a child being lured into the "pot culture" and then going crazy in a pot induced mania.

    What ever happened to Barney Franks bill he was trying to pass?

    Barney Frank To File Bill Legalizing Marijuana | Crooks and Liars

    (I mentioned Barney Frank, the conservatives will come running.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by sowalgayboi View Post
    I think the interesting part is that no one is jumping on the keep it illegal platform. No impassioned stories of a child being lured into the "pot culture" and then going crazy in a pot induced mania.

    What ever happened to Barney Franks bill he was trying to pass?

    Barney Frank To File Bill Legalizing Marijuana | Crooks and Liars

    (I mentioned Barney Frank, the conservatives will come running .)
    SWGB, let them squawk. Barney's right on this one. No pun intended.

    You will also notice that no one has had the cajones to even thank me for post #12 as yet...interesting, isn't it?
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    I didn't thank you for post #12 because I don't agree with it.

    Marijuana maybe, all drugs - no!

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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    There is another thread.

    Regardless of your personal feelings about pot smoking and it's legality, Phelps is a role model who did something illegal.

    I care less about the fact that a role model did it then the fact that a great athlete is so careless with their body (he has also had past alcohol problems). Swimming is a sport with very low tolerances for error - thousandths of a second are the difference in a gold and silver medal and he's hitting a bong!
    you have a point, but really its his choice. good or bad. it belongs only to him.

    Quote Originally Posted by full time View Post
    Most of the swimmers I know (and I've known some of the best) are hard partiers. I don't begrudge a swimmer wishing to partake. Problem for Phelps is he's a public figure who is an icon to many children. Answering a kid's (under 10) questions about Phelps, bongs and weed is really awkward and uncool. He needs to show a little more restraint in his private life so that his dirty laundry doesn't explode on the public scene.
    you are right that he should show more restraint. but then again, I say its his choice entirely. if he loses sponsors or whatever, those are the consequences, just like any young person has to face if they make certain choices and get caught. I would say he needs to be more choosey about friends and surroundings. and do whatever the hail he wants to do.

    Geo - I think lots of healthy discussion is going on because of Phelps (this thread is an example), even if he did apologize. he was just doing what he had to do by publicly apologozing - its kind of good common courtesy. Surely he meant, "I'm sorry for getting caught on camera". actually, I'm sure he is highly embarrassed and feeling like an dumbarse right about now for the whole thing. If and when he tokes again, he'll be sure to be in a very private setting. Geo - you make total sense. I especially agree with your statement that I just wish i did not have to know - what a shame! it is just not anyone's business.

    lots more people smoke pot, from my old aunt to someone's grandma I won't mention, leaders around the world, losers, champions, sick people in pain, and every kind of person in between, including athletes. someday it will have to be legalized. my only concern now and in the future is educating children about its harmful effects and keeping it out of their hands, as much as alcohol, pills and any drug.
    Last edited by Teresa; 02-04-2009 at 06:27 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by analogman View Post
    SWGB, let them squawk. Barney's right on this one. No pun intended.

    You will also notice that no one has had the cajones to even thank me for post #12 as yet...interesting, isn't it?
    I'm out of rep for the day, I'll get you for it though.

    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    I didn't thank you for post #12 because I don't agree with it.

    Marijuana maybe, all drugs - no!
    Why is that? Legalize heroin and you've just destroyed the economy of the Taliban.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sowalgayboi View Post
    I'm out of rep for the day, I'll get you for it though.



    Why is that? Legalize heroin and you've just destroyed the economy of the Taliban.
    I got him covered. I am not sure about legalizing all drugs. But, I'm ingrigued.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tootsie View Post
    I got him covered. I am not sure about legalizing all drugs. But, I'm ingrigued.
    I'm for it, but feel that it should be taxed into oblivion to cover treatment. The more treatment a drug requires the more it should be taxed. If that means close to street prices for drugs so be it. As a friend of mine pointed out to another, one time. They are called recreational drugs for a reason. Once you've taken care of all your obligations and you have left over money then you can do them. That same friend tried Heroin once. His friends video taped him doing it and after watching the video he has never had any desire to do it again. I'm not saying that addiction isn't a true problem for some, but it's not a guarantee for everyone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    I didn't thank you for post #12 because I don't agree with it.

    Marijuana maybe, all drugs - no!
    Let me attempt to clarify. By legalizing all drugs, they and the users can more easily be monitored and help can be rendered when necessary and needed. It would take the production, distribution, and sale out of the hands of drug lords and thugs and possibly put into the hands of more caring and professional people. And we would no longer need to import any of these substances from our enemies.

    If we simply exposed all drugs for what they really are, I think the illicitness of their appeal lessens (let's admit it, most of us try things like this because we are told not to do so) and we all benefit from the true educational aspects of the exposure. When we keep such things in the shadows as we have for 70+ years, very few of us, especially our children, even know what the actual truth of most drugs is and these false perceptions make experimentation more appealing to some of them.

    Whether you agree with me on the legalization part or not, truth in education about illegal substances is desparately needed in this country. I just think complete or partial legalization is a step in the direction of de-mystifying these substances, ending this stupid "war on drugs" that has never and can never work, saving billions of our tax dollars, and putting America on the road to actually helping the sick, addicted people of our nation. Why are we still attacking the victims of this alleged war?
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    Very good point. I remember in school being told during anti-drug classes that animals wouldn't eat pot. Fast forward to adult life and learn that Deer meat is especially tender due to their propensity to eat wild marijuana.

    Just realized it. That also explains the glazed look when they stand in the road before they get hit.

    Deer: Dude, check out that cool light.
    Last edited by SWGB; 02-04-2009 at 07:05 PM.

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  52. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by scooterbug44 View Post
    There is another thread.

    Regardless of your personal feelings about pot smoking and it's legality, Phelps is a role model who did something illegal.

    I care less about the fact that a role model did it then the fact that a great athlete is so careless with their body (he has also had past alcohol problems). Swimming is a sport with very low tolerances for error - thousandths of a second are the difference in a gold and silver medal and he's hitting a bong!
    As far as I'm concerned the man has done everything he needs to athletically and is under no obligation to his fans to pursue further excellence in the sport of swimming. That is his business.

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  54. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by full time View Post
    Most of the swimmers I know (and I've known some of the best) are hard partiers. I don't begrudge a swimmer wishing to partake. Problem for Phelps is he's a public figure who is an icon to many children. Answering a kid's (under 10) questions about Phelps, bongs and weed is really awkward and uncool. He needs to show a little more restraint in his private life so that his dirty laundry doesn't explode on the public scene.
    Try doing that when the POTUS is getting BJs.

    Quote Originally Posted by traderx View Post
    I had never heard it either until it appeared in a thread in the lounge.

    Cheeba sounds like the name of a Chihuahua that won the Westminster.
    ...as one could see from the OTHER thread about this topic...all I could think of was cheetos.

    Interesting discussions here about drugs. I will go back and read Barney Fife's take.
    Which community along 30A shall we pillage this evening?....gttbm

  55. #39
    I believe that all drugs should be legal. Prostitution as well. Gambling. Why is it against the law to "scalp" concert tickets? If we get rid of the drug laws and the accompanying war on drugs, crime would probably drop by eighty percent.

    If I do something and it does not affect the life, liberty or property of another person, it should not be illegal.
    "It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time."

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  57. #40
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    first heard about cheeba with tone loc.

  58. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by traderx View Post
    I believe that all drugs should be legal. Prostitution as well. Gambling. Why is it against the law to "scalp" concert tickets? If we get rid of the drug laws and the accompanying war on drugs, crime would probably drop by eighty percent.

    If I do something and it does not affect the life, liberty or property of another person, it should not be illegal.
    the addiction rate increase would end up costing society more for rehab, but i believe property and violent crime would drop greatly.

  59. #42
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    how do other countries deal with drugs and legalization? I really don't care if people are allowed to destroy their own lives doing drugs, but I do care how it effects me and others. I get what analogman is saying about telling the truth about drugs - how they are distributed, who is in charge, how the whole biz works, who it effects, crime surrounding the biz, etc.... but I don't know what good could come out of legalizing all the drugs that are horribly destructive to people, families, whole sub-cultures of people, etc. treatment is available to them now.

    I would hate to see the govt have an entire department dedicated to controlling drugs (oh, we already have this in place, right? FDA?), as well as the treatment of drug addicts because we gave them the right to do drugs. of course, this is America. the right to destroy ourselves is a given, right? well, not really. destroying ourselves destroys much and many around us. (but you may say that taking the "illegal" out of drugs will make people not want to do them as much. most of the criminal element may be removed, but not all. many problems would remain along with many new ones). so, its not an easy issue. No - complete legalizaton won't do us a bit of good. some legalization - yes of course. Marijuana being illegal seems too silly for words.

  60. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tootsie View Post
    how do other countries deal with drugs and legalization? I really don't care if people are allowed to destroy their own lives doing drugs, but I do care how it effects me and others. I get what analogman is saying about telling the truth about drugs - how they are distributed, who is in charge, how the whole biz works, who it effects, crime surrounding the biz, etc.... but I don't know what good could come out of legalizing all the drugs that are horribly destructive to people, families, whole sub-cultures of people, etc. treatment is available to them now.

    I would hate to see the govt have an entire department dedicated to controlling drugs (oh, we already have this in place, right? FDA?), as well as the treatment of drug addicts because we gave them the right to do drugs. of course, this is America. the right to destroy ourselves is a given, right? well, not really. destroying ourselves destroys much and many around us. (but you may say that taking the "illegal" out of drugs will make people not want to do them as much. most of the criminal element may be removed, but not all. many problems would remain along with many new ones). so, its not an easy issue. No - complete legalizaton won't do us a bit of good. some legalization - yes of course. Marijuana being illegal seems too silly for words.
    Tootsie, I can see your point, but let me make another one as a person who has more experience on this subject than most. When I was young and more susceptible to the influence of peer pressure (others just as inexperienced as I was with illegal substances of unknown consequences), I couldn't see the long term effect of my own inappropriate actions. If drugs were legal then, I might have been able to prevent some of the terrible things I saw later in life. Things that happened to many of my friends and relatives who didn't come to their senses as early in the process as I did. People who do illicit things grow adept at concealing their addictions and weaknesses. My mother was one of these people. Hers was a unique kind of addiction that I won't elaborate on at this time. Just suffice it to say that her skills at deception and subterfuge were masterful. I truly believe that this kind of behavior's cause is a direct result of American society's "war on drugs" mentality and its destructive influence on the abusers.

    I lost four other friends to the scourge that hard drugs are on our society. If these things are out in the open (legal) and younger people can observe the destructive influence on others first hand, instead of them being hidden behind closed doors, as it inevitably will be if drugs remain illegal, I think the things you described above that I bolded will be much less likely to occur in the first place. I consider this a good preventative tactic.

    Treatment is less likely needed if the abuse never happens in the first place. Prevention is preferable to treatment. America's war on drugs has failed miserably. Whether what I described in this thread is the proper way to address this problem or not, we desperately need to do something that we have been unwilling to do in our recent history. Many just choose to ignore the problem and expect it to go away. Other say don't change a thing, just keep on punishing the abuser and it will deter others. As Dr. Phil always says: "how's that been working for you?" Did the illegality of Mr. Phelps' actions, with all of the implications this might have on his future, deter him? I say it has never worked, doesn't work now, and never will.

    And Tootsie, thank you for your thoughtful consideration and insightful posts.
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  62. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    the addiction rate increase would end up costing society more for rehab, but i believe property and violent crime would drop greatly.
    At the same time without constantly locking people up for marijuana you'd have a bumper crop (no pun intended) of facilities looking to fill beds. Turn them into rehabs cut the guard staffing and replace with far fewer nurses and aides and you've turned a prison into a true rehabilitation center. It doesn't have to look like something Britney or Paris would check into, but if it's government run off of taxes from the sale of these substances then it probably shouldn't be too cushy.

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    I work with teenaged boys all the live long day and am desperate to find them some good role models.

    Michael Vick? O.J. Simpson? Phelps?

    Many of my boys have absent fathers. Some of them have fathers in prison. Some of them have fathers who have died. (A couple of them have fathers who died in prison!) If I tell them about my own father or brother, sometimes I don't think they even believe me. They don't understand good men.

    I need a hero. If you're going to be on the podium and the cover of SI, then have some integrity. If you're going to hold your body to a high athletic standard, then why not hold the rest of your life to a higher standard as well? All my life I knew that I shouldn't do certain things because of the potential disgrace of being caught. I can't teach my boys that when I have all their role models giving the example of "It doesn't matter what I do in my free time as long as I win."

    Takes more balls to do the right thing than to do the easy thing.
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  65. #46
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    If one wants good role models for the kids he has no choice but to turn to fiction. I don't care who you are, even the most respected elder has flaws that need to be rejected. Teach kids to think rather than believe in some role model concept which is nothing more than a media fueled fairy tale that inevitably leads to media fueled outrage. This whole deal about how it affects "the children" is just a ploy adults use in an attempt to control behavior that they personally have a problem with. It's all about the welfare of "the children". Yeah right. It reminds me of when people get an autograph from a famous person and they claim it's for their kids. B.S.

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  67. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoHall View Post
    I work with teenaged boys all the live long day and am desperate to find them some good role models.

    Michael Vick? O.J. Simpson? Phelps?

    Many of my boys have absent fathers. Some of them have fathers in prison. Some of them have fathers who have died. (A couple of them have fathers who died in prison!) If I tell them about my own father or brother, sometimes I don't think they even believe me. They don't understand good men.

    I need a hero. If you're going to be on the podium and the cover of SI, then have some integrity. If you're going to hold your body to a high athletic standard, then why not hold the rest of your life to a higher standard as well? All my life I knew that I shouldn't do certain things because of the potential disgrace of being caught. I can't teach my boys that when I have all their role models giving the example of "It doesn't matter what I do in my free time as long as I win."

    Takes more balls to do the right thing than to do the easy thing.
    I agree with your point to a certain degree, but doing so by lumping Phelps in with OJ and Vick doesn't make it very well. Besides marijuana is legal to smoke in many states and several countries. Pot didn't put these boys or their fathers where they are and if it was the only cause of their trouble, it was the stupid law that got them there, not the pot itself. Just my personal opinion.

    Edit:
    I've been thinking about your post and something really bothers me. Why does anyone need a hero to inspire them to do something with his/her life? Inspiration must come from within. "Winning" doesn't come by being lazy (and I think most habitual criminals...not recreational pot smokers... are just that). Most people must work very hard to get what they want. I think Phelps has had to work extremely hard to get where he is and what he has accomplished is certainly not "the easy thing". I don't think smoking a little pot lessens his integrity much at all. He is still and always be an inspiration to me and millions around the world regardless of what he does in his free time. Here's why I feel this way:

    My mother was a drug addict and I had an absentee father. I lived well below the poverty line for most of my youth. I worked from the time I was 13 to help my family and to have the few posessions I treasured. When I was 18, I left my home in Kansas City and moved to Chicago and then Los Angeles to pursue a musical career. By the time I was 24, I had a recording contract with a major label. When I was 31, I earned a degree in electronics engineering. I did this by myself, for myself. I worked for decades in the recording industry with many famous people, and now I live in South Walton County near the worlds most beautiful beaches.

    I made all of this happen by getting up every day, looking in the mirror, and telling myself never to look back. Keep moving forward and make something of yourself...and I worked my @$$ off every day to make it happen. Sure I had heros, but I never let them define what I wanted to do for myself.

    We, as Americans, must stop blaming others for our own shortcomings. If we choose an action, we choose the consequences. It's that simple. Role models are a miniscule part of what should influence a person to live up to his/her potential. We must take responsibility for our own decisions. The more we can instill this in our young people, the less we will need alleged "heros" to inspire us to become what we should be able to become on our own. No more lame excuses.

    I invite you to show this post to some of your boys and see what their reactions are.

    PS
    If you are looking for a good role model, I suggest you look into the stories of Wyclef Jean or Tim McGraw. I think your boys should be able to relate to one or the other.
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  69. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geo View Post
    Careless with his body? I get what you are saying but it is a slippery slope. The same logic can be applied if he eats at McDonald's or doesn't get adequate sleep.

    Alcohol problems? I know the guy got a DUI (I wish I didn't know it- it is none of my business which is a subpoint in this discussion) but does he really have alcohol problems? I would venture to guess that if all of us when we were college aged were held to the standards we are holding this guy to that most of us would be eligible for the "past alcohol problems" label.

    We don't see a picture of Phelps chugging a can of Budweiser because lobbyists in this country were successful in persuading lawmakers that alcohol is an ok drug. It wouldn't be news if Phelps ingested a mind altering drug if the pharma companies convinced the FDA, the lawmakers and the MD's that that their drug was ok.

    I really see this whole thing as a "kids will be kids" story. This to me is about as serious as a speeding infraction on a country road when no one was around. Was it illegal? Yep. The smartest thing to do? Nope. But it was just a young guy unwinding. And it is a shame we know about it. I do not believe he owes us an apology. That said, I understand why he HAS to apologize. It's the PR machine.
    This is an interesting thread & I agree with both sides. However, Geo, I'd love to see how you would feel about something similar in another 10 years when your cute little kids are older. (& they are adorable, btw!)

    I don't see this as a PR machine. I feel the apology was the least he should have done. It takes a lot to own up to a mistake. The apology makes him more of a man in my eyes.


  70. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoHall View Post
    I need a hero. If you're going to be on the podium and the cover of SI, then have some integrity. If you're going to hold your body to a high athletic standard, then why not hold the rest of your life to a higher standard as well? All my life I knew that I shouldn't do certain things because of the potential disgrace of being caught.
    Quote Originally Posted by LuciferSam View Post
    If one wants good role models for the kids he has no choice but to turn to fiction. I don't care who you are, even the most respected elder has flaws that need to be rejected. Teach kids to think rather than believe in some role model concept which is nothing more than a media fueled fairy tale that inevitably leads to media fueled outrage. This whole deal about how it affects "the children" is just a ploy adults use in an attempt to control behavior that they personally have a problem with. It's all about the welfare of "the children". Yeah right. It reminds me of when people get an autograph from a famous person and they claim it's for their kids. B.S.
    I agree with both of you, but we, as a society, put too much pressure on our "icons" and when they are youthful ones, I can not possibly imagine how much more pressure they are under. Athletes compete for themselves and push themselves to attain the impossible. Constant training, the money expended and time involved, then when you have reached your goals, like a gold medals, or in Phelps case, multiple medals, there is a sense of accomplishment, but at the same time, later when the high wears off-- in the non-literal sense-- they probably go through some depression because where do you they go from there? He's a kid really, and so what? If it were me, I'd probably have had a bong attached to me head with multiple bongy extensions in case one burned out. Instead of worrying about illicit use of drugs, we should be more concerned about his state of mind. We also are probably the only Country that gives a rat's arse about this.
    "With Liberty and nothing for all" ---my 3 yr. old nephew's version of the Pledge of Allegiance.


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  72. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnrudy View Post
    This is an interesting thread & I agree with both sides. However, Geo, I'd love to see how you would feel about something similar in another 10 years when your cute little kids are older. (& they are adorable, btw!)

    I don't see this as a PR machine. I feel the apology was the least he should have done. It takes a lot to own up to a mistake. The apology makes him more of a man in my eyes.
    Thx for the kind words about my sweet babies.

    Only time will tell how I view the world in 10 years. But on this subject I am not expecting any grand reversal in thought. I will work hard to help my kids achieve a balanced, reasonable, healthy outlook on this subject and any other. I believe my approach/attitude on this subject will serve my kids well.

    Don't get me wrong. I am not PRO pot. I am ANTI anti pot.


    I don't want anyone feeding it to my kids. I just don't want them to lose perspective about it. Demonizing this plant and people who use it to relax does not serve our children. Research shows that pot isn't bad and that our laws, policies and campaigns are untrue and frankly, do not work. The truth is out there about why a plant became illlegal and who was behind it. Why is this ignored? I believe that there are many sheep in this country (I am not speaking directly to anyone on this thread). They feel a certain way about something only because they believe they are supposed to. Sad.

    NoHall, I agree with you that our children need heroes but I believe we need to stop pointing them in the direction of athletes and entertainers. Phelps is a swimmer. Just because SI put him on the cover in no way means he is now responsible to other people's kids. Because he went faster than the other 20 year olds in the pool and has our government's symbols on his swimcap doesn't mean that he lost his integrity when he inhaled from a waterbottle.
    Last edited by Geo; 02-05-2009 at 09:11 AM.

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