- The Facts:Voters in Denver, Colorado decided on Tuesday to decriminalize psilocybin, or “magic mushrooms,” by a thin margin, making it the first city in the U.S. to do so.
- Reflect On:Is the decriminalization of victimless crimes like the possession of illicit drugs a sign that we are gaining more freedoms to choose, or is it just a blip on the radar?
The notion that we need to have an authority figure tell us what to do and what not to do is coming more and more into question in modern times. In fact, wresting away the power we have given to our authority may turn out to be the single most important challenge we face in our collective awakening.
To some extent, we can look at human history as the struggle between those who have aspired to hold the mantle of authority, each one promoting their paradigm in a kind of competition with the aim of consolidating and expanding their power over the people. The rise of democracy has turned this struggle from one that mainly employed brute force to one that uses the subtle arts of persuasion and manipulation to garner consent for their rules and rulership.
All this to say that when something that our authority had previously called ‘illegal’ (meaning its commission could result in fines or imprisonment) is suddenly legal, it is worth examining whether this truly represents a victory for personal freedom, a small step towards the unshackling of the bonds of authority.