Now is the time to hear, take into account and try to clarify opinions on these issues. For a time, there were general attacks on the Bill of Rights on the pretext of the so-called war on drugs. For some reason, the problem of psychoactive substances has become even more frightening for society, more insidious than communism at one time. The quality of the rhetoric emanating from the psychedelic community should be radically improved. If we do not do this, we will lose the possibility of exercising our birthright, and any possibility of exploring the psychedelic dimension will be closed. Ironically, this tragedy can occur as some kind of footnote to the prohibition of synthetic and addictive drugs. It will never be superfluous to say that the issue of psychedelics is a matter of civil rights and civil liberties. This is a questionassociated with the most important of human freedoms — the freedom of religious practice and the private expression of the individual mind.

Once they said that women should not be given the right to vote, otherwise society would perish. And before that, kings could not cede their absolute power: otherwise there will be chaos. And now we are told that it is impossible to legalize psychoactive substances, since otherwise society will collapse. This is absolute nonsense. As we have seen, human history can be described as a series of relationships with plants, established and torn relations. We explored many of the ways that plants, substances, and policies brutally clashed — from the effects of sugar on commerce to the effects of coffee on a modern employee, from British opium pressure on China’s population to CIA use of heroin in the ghetto to cause controversy and discontent.

Our history is a history of relationships with plants. Her lessons can be made conscious, introduced into social policy and used to create a more prosperous, meaningful world, or they can be rejected, as happened with human sexuality, the discussion of which was forbidden until the work of Freud and others brought it to the general review. This analogy is pertinent, since the enhancement of the ability of cognitive experience, possible thanks to plant hallucinogens, is basically as fundamental to the essence of man as sexuality. The question of how soon we will develop into a mature community that can address these topics depends entirely on us.

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