I submit the following, seemingly reasonable principle:
If you engage in some costly action, Y, because you believe some other thing, X, is true and then you later find out that X is false, then on pain of irrationality you should cease Y.
Now, it’s possible that in the intervening period you get really lucky and discover another reason to do Y. In general, that seems rather unlikely. More probably, if someone persists in that costly activity, it’s a result of a habit and/or status-quo bias.
How rational does the drug war seem in light of this principle and the following historical quotes promoting drug prohibition?
- When some beet field peon takes a few traces of this stuff… he thinks he has just been elected president of Mexico, so he starts out to execute all his political enemies.” In Texas, a senator said on the floor of the Senate: “All Mexicans are crazy, and this stuff [marijuana] is what makes them crazy.
- Marihuana influences Negroes to look at white people in the eye, step on white men’s shadows and look at a white woman twice.
- Under the influence of hashish those fanatics would madly rush at their enemies, and ruthlessly massacre every one within their grasp.
- There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the US, and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz, and swing, result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and any others.
- …the primary reason to outlaw marijuana is its effect on the degenerate races.
- Marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its users insanity, criminality, and death.
- Marihuana leads to pacifism and communist brainwashing
- You smoke a joint and you’re likely to kill your brother.
- Marijuana is the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind.
- Most of the attacks upon the white women of the South are the direct result of a cocaine-crazed Negro brain
- Negro Cocaine ‘Fiends’ Are New Southern Menace:Murder and Insanity Increasing Among Lower-Class Blacks
- one of the most unfortunate phases of smoking opium in this country is the large number of women who have become involved and were living as common-law wives or cohabitating with Chinese in the Chinatowns of our various cities
- Colored students at the Univ. of Minn. partying with (white) female students, smoking [marijuana] and getting their sympathy with stories of racial persecution. Result: pregnancy
- Two Negros took a girl fourteen years old and kept her for two days under the influence of hemp. Upon recovery she was found to be suffering from syphilis.
- If the Chinaman cannot get along without his ‘dope,’ we can get along without him.
- ..Negro cocaine fiends are now a known Southern menace.
- Marihuana, perhaps now the most insidious of our narcotics, is a direct by-product of unrestricted Mexican immigration. Easily grown, it has been asserted that it has recently been planted between rows in a California penitentiary garden. Mexican peddlers have been caught distributing sample marihuana cigarets to school children. Bills for our quota against Mexico have been blocked mysteriously in every Congress since the 1924 Quota Act. Our nation has more than enough laborers.
- Liquor will actually make a brute out of a Negro, causing him to commit unnatural crimes. The effect is the same on the white man, though the white man being further evolved it takes longer time to reduce him to the same level.
- According to Hill, “Gompers [Samuel Gompers, President of the American Federation of Labor 1886-1924, except for one year] conjures up a terrible picture of how the Chinese entice little white boys and girls into becoming ‘opium fiends.’ Condemned to spend their days in the back of laundry rooms, these tiny lost souls would yield up their virgin bodies to their maniacal yellow captors. “What other crimes were committed in those dark fetid places,” Gompers writes, “when these little innocent victims of the Chinamen’s wiles were under the influence of the drug, are almost too horrible to imagine… There are hundreds, aye, thousands, of our American girls and boys who have acquired this deathly habit and are doomed, hopelessly doomed, beyond the shadow of redemption.”
- Mexicans became “very violent, especially when they become angry and will attack an officer even if a gun is drawn on him. They seem to have no fear, I have also noted that under the influence of this weed they have enormous strength and that it will take several men to handle one man while under ordinary circumstances one man could handle him with ease.
- The use of marihuana is not uncommon in the colonies of the lower class of Mexican immigrants. This is a native drug made from what is sometimes called the ‘crazy weed.’ The effects are high exhilaration and intoxication, followed by extreme depression and broken nerves. [Police] officers and Mexicans both ascribe many of the moral irregularities of Mexicans to the effects of marihuana.
- It has been stated on very high authority that the use of co- caine by the negroes of the South is one of the most elusive and troublesome questions which confront the enforcement of the law in most of the Southern states
- cocaine is often the direct incentive to the crime of rape by the negroes of the South and other sections of the country.
- The record of the ‘cocaine nigger’ near Asheville, who dropped five men dead in their tracks, using only one cartridge for each, offers evidence that is sufficiently convincing.
If anyone else has any more such delightful quotes, send them my way, please!