Pot vs Rape: Punishment Disproportion

Feeling better today.  The dissociation seems to be almost gone.  I was at least capable enough to write the following a short while ago on Facebook, and I think it’s spot-on:

One of my friends posted the following question: “Why do pot smokers do more time in prison than rapists? Serious question.
Hell, most rapists never see a jail cell.”

I’m going to share my answer here, because I think it’s very important that we realize these things.

My first response: “Reefer Madness. Plus the longstanding stereotype that it’s mostly black people who smoke weed. Combine that with institutionalized racism…”

My second, and more comprehensive response:

“I think it has to do with a combination of things:

Male privilege and misogyny, in so many ways. Women get thought of as “sluts” if they enjoy sex or have multiple partners, and get called “frigid” or “prudes” if they “withhold” sex; meanwhile men who have sex with multiple women are considered to be more manly–there’s a reason the women in these instances have been considered as “conquests”…as though it’s quintessentially a male right to “conquer as much pussy as we can get” (to quote Eddie Murphy).

In short, men have been considered superior for many hundreds of years, with women being relegated to secondary and even expendable status, and that still holds true today, no matter how much advocacy women have done (I like to think that the advocacy has done some good, but then I am saddened and angered when I read about another college football player raping another woman). And women are greatly more often the victims of rape than men. So men, the ruling sex, don’t have to care because it’s not something that happens to them as a rule.

(All this points to men as a whole being insecure with themselves and compensating on a vastly widespread and dangerous scale, and I think men need to be able to experience their emotions safely both at home and in school…with classes in the latter’s case beginning very early on, before the hardening and prejudices and acting out of high school or junior high take hold)

Hell, in the US it wasn’t even a crime for a man to rape his spouse until I think 1978. In Ireland divorce wasn’t legal until 1994 I think.

I think that covers why rape isn’t considered a huge deal legally, with regard to punishment length.

The pot thing on the other hand has to do with what I mentioned, but also the perception of “druggies” and “The War on Drugs” (I feel like there should be a trademark symbol after this). I think the war on drugs is racist (just ask Paul LePage about that one), but is also based on the same thing that mental illness is based on: doing illegal drugs or being mentally ill are considered moral failings, still, to this day. There’s plenty of social work history to back this up. The moral failing argument has been made for at least 150 years. Also, I think weed is considered a non-American crop–it’s considered a crop of non-white people, such as the Vietnamese…American boys got a taste of all that green when they were over there. Meanwhile, tobacco is considered fine because white slave owners owned the plantations and made black people work for them. There’s the children angle as well: pot has always been seen as a gateway drug, and there is this image of dealers enticing kids (which they no doubt do)…preying on America’s children. Making pot legal isn’t popular because of this association, and the gateway association with coke, heroin, etc.

I really do think these mentalities are still alive and well today, even if people aren’t aware of them. Pot smokers go to jail for longer because they are consciously or unconsciously considered more of a threat (and because of historical punishment precedents) than rapists (who are, after all, generally all men who are privileged…and often white. Can’t punish white men for getting some, now can we?)”.


Whoa…dissociation again

I found myself wanting to post about my very recent (past two days) experience with dissociation due to massive stress about my moving in less than two weeks…then I got to my blog and noticed my last post was about dissociation.

Man, I worry waaaaayyy too much :/

Anyway, here’s what’s been going on, as conveyed to a friend (names omitted):

Hey [friend]: do you have dissociative or depersonalization episodes? I don’t feel like I’m watching myself live someone else’s life, but I definitely feel very fuzzy (things seem almost cloudy vision-wise, and I want to do things slowly to compensate; I thought I shouldn’t drive to the store to get food because I thought my reaction times and decisions wouldn’t be good enough..though perhaps having a concrete thing to do might help) and a bit physically imprecise…like I’m not real. I slept so much yesterday, and I thought that would mean I’d not fall asleep quickly last night–I actually fell asleep quickly and slept for 4 hours (until a few minutes ago). Not at all surprised by the lack of a full nights sleep. Another symptom has been being easily affected by sudden noises, and going back n forth between feeling little anxiety to feeling a bit more. Either way I feel fragile.

Does any of this sound familiar to you personally? Or if not does [friend’s husband] or anyone else you know experience this the way I’m experiencing it? I read a bit about dissociative states and anxiety disorders and one person said that dissociation is the brain’s way of protecting itself from more hurt. The blogger suggested breathing exercises and other things that I have in my DBT manual for coping with anxiety, such as keeping a unique-feeling object in my pocket and squeezing it and touching it, concentrating on feeling it.

In any event, I want this feeling to go away because it’s a bit distressing, but I think distress has led me to the dissociation, so I’m doing my best to not think of anything in the future…which is difficult since I’ll be moving in less than 2 weeks. God I can’t wait til that’s done.

Forgot to mention: yesterday I felt like I could experience any emotion at all at the drop of a hat and for no discernible reason. The intensity of certain emotions changed as well. I felt like the future was going to be ok one minute, and suffering-filled the next.

Anybody else ever feel like this? Wanna weigh in?