Saturday, September 09, 2006

Stoner Seniors

My favorite news story of the week reports on a recent survey indicating that drug use is down among teenagers but up among baby boomers. David Murray, special assistant to the director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, conjectures that it’s because today’s 50- and 60-something’s have brought with them, “like baggage,” their habits from the Sixties and Seventies, when drug use among youth peaked. He and his boss, John Walters, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, laud the news regarding reduced illicit drug use by teenagers, but engage in a plenty of hand-wringing over the rise among older folks.

But if the latter news really bothers them, I think they’re in for some hard times.

I predict that drug use among seniors will only continue to rise as more and more baby boomers transition into retirement and old age. Freed of the responsibility to get up every morning and commute to work, more and more children of the Love and/or Me decades will return to the habits of their youth and turn to altering their states of consciousness with greater variety and frequency.

Unlike Murray and Walters, I don’t necessarily consider this a bad thing. You’ve got to fill up your retirement days somehow; my grandfather liked to drink wine and fix toy steam engines; my dad drank martinis and worked on stained glass art; if I spend my “golden years” getting stoned and playing with bicycles, what’s the difference?

I’m also not convinced it’s good that drug use by teenagers is reportedly going down.

Several interpretations are possible.

First, it may just be that lying by teenagers is on the upswing. If I’m seventeen and stoned, I’m not going to tell the truth to a governmental survey anyway.

Second, perhaps illicit drug use is down because legal drugs use is up. And, if it comes to a choice between Prozac or pot, I would prefer the kids just get stoned.


Anonymous Andy said...

You are one of the few people, parents no less, of our generation I know who openly admit to liking pot still. Maybe this is why I like you, Dave.

Seen any of the Weeds episodes on Showtime? Pretty audacious. I thought the first season was out there; so far this second season it seems even more over the top. But I bet you would like it...

12:12 PM  

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