Take the euphoric ‘side-effect’ from cannabis and most all medical and recreational users will stop. The passion surrounding cannabis is best understood under the higher order topic of ‘The Use and Abuse of Pleasure.’ It is only from this level that cannabis euphoria can be judged well.
Any act is judged not by the act itself (using or not using cannabis) but by the reason for the act, e.g., that for the sake of which the act is done. This includes all ways of excessively pursuing pleasure and avoiding pain, whether the source be sky diving, drink, food, sex, alcohol, cannabis, self-esteem, status, wealth, hair or shear ecstasy (religious and chemical).
Ancient pagans knew the formula for natural activity; pursue pleasure and avoid pain. On the other hand, the ability to delay gratification takes training, not words. Second nature habits are worn like body weight, which is not chosen as meals and words are. Habits exist only by choosing particular acts that accumulatively become the characteristics we ourselves live with.
The Goldilocks Principle is a rational framework for understanding the reasons cannabis is used. For it is reason which forms the characteristic habits in dealing with pleasure and pain. Here are the characters formed by applying The Goldilocks Principle to The Cannabis Wonderland:
The Reckless users (fools & softies) and Prohibitionists non-user (hardies & boors) are absolutely opposed to each other and would eliminate one another if not for a middle third position keeping them apart. Thus, the extremes are more contrary (further apart) to each other than each is relative to the middle Responsible users (recreationists & medical patients).
Fools vs. Boors:
Excessively pursuing pleasurable activities is a foolish waste (a wasted fool), whereas deficiently pursuing pleasure makes one an insensitive boor. Fools are pained by feeling neither pleasure, nor pain, and thus constantly seek cures, whereas insensitive boors are pained just by the thought that someone, somewhere, is having a good time for no reason at all.
Recreational users prefer cannabis to unwind from work (“Amusement is relaxation if it is indeed rest from work” – Aristotle).
Hardies vs. Softies:
Not avoiding needless pain makes one hard and headstrong, whereas excessively avoiding the pains of productive work makes one oversensitive, soft and lazy:
“This man drags his coat in order not to exert himself with the pain of taking it up, and though mimicking one who is afflicted, does not suppose himself miserable while being similar to the miserable one himself.” – Aristotle, NEC VII 1150b 1-5
Medical users prefer cannabis euphoria to drive out retractable bodily/psychic pain and thereby improve functionality.
Prohibitionists will not make allowances for the recreational and medicinal use of cannabis until the reckless reasons for cannabis use is acknowledged by the middle. Sensible cannabis users must identify a place for the ‘wrong reason to use’ in order for the ‘right reason to use’ to be heard above the extremes. Cannabis is only a political issue by virtue of its efficiency for intense euphoria with little, if any, material harm.
Remember, the opposite of ‘forcing all by law to not get high’ is ‘forcing all by law to get high.’