On another occasion, at LaGuardia, in New York, the transportation-security officer in charge of my secondary screening emptied my carry-on bag of nearly everything it contained, including a yellow, three-foot-by-four-foot Hezbollah flag, purchased at a Hezbollah gift shop in south Lebanon.
The flag features, as its charming main image, an upraised fist clutching an AK-47 automatic rifle. Atop the rifle is a line of Arabic writing that reads Then surely the party of God are they who will be triumphant. The officer took the flag and spread it out on the inspection table. She finished her inspection, gave me back my flag, and told me I could go.
I said, “That’s a Hezbollah flag.” She said, “Uh-huh.” Not “Uh-huh, I’ve been trained to recognize the symbols of anti-American terror groups, but after careful inspection of your physical person, your behavior, and your last name, I’ve come to the conclusion that you are not a Bekaa Valley–trained threat to the United States commercial aviation system,” but “Uh-huh, I’m going on break, why are you talking to me?”
mikekearn wrote:I don't care about health effects (what people want to do to themselves is their business) but I do care about the mind-altering effects. I think tobacco is about on par with caffeine for that - it's a stimulant, after all. Alcohol, though, impairs your brain's functions, which marijuana can also do. Therefore it should be regulated the same way. You should be allowed to buy it and consume as much as you want in private, but driving while stoned should be the same as driving while drunk as far as punishments go. That sort of thing.
I'm not saying everything should be legalized, but I think the massive restrictions on most drugs are ridiculous.
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