why the drug censorship?

Isn’t it sad that even Straight Dope has to censor the posts - to some extent. I appreciate that y’all allow what’s previously been written to stay, but it sucks that you have to close everything. Isn’t there something wrong in this “free” country where a website has to be afraid of government problems because of the posts of independant members? Seriously!:smack:

Oh yeah… and I’m referring mainly to the previously closed threads asking 1) who’s done cocaine, and 2) what’s your drug of choice. These are regular people who’re, I would guess, done with their drug experimentation and want to relive some old memories. I don’t in any way blame SDMB’s, but I’m saddened that they have to close boards because they contain talk of illegal activity.

I agree. I totally understand and support the policy of not allowing drug threads that deal with “Where can I get some Ecstacy” or “How do I make Crystal Meth”. But I’m baffled by the recent trend of not allowing polls about drug usage. I mean, yes, it’s probably not a good Idea to go around talking about what drugs you did in a public forum, but no one is making people participate. The policy, if I remember correctly, is that they will close threads that teach people how to break the law, but I don’t see how admitting past drug use falls under that.

Ironic that the title of the column, hence the board, is a not too subtle drug reference. Content aside, I think the main reason for the columns long-time popularity is it’s winking counter-culture reference. Who among us didn’t wonder, before attending our first dope-fest, if there would be a joint passed around at some point?

To me it looks like “Cecil” has become a hypocritical tight-ass. Just like everyone else who used to be ‘cool’, and now has to pretend otherwise to keep their job. Like me, and almost everyone I know.

All a symptom of our country’s long slide into despotism, IMHO. But that’s another pit thread, for another day.

Frankly, I think threads along the lines of “Where can I get decent weed in my city?” or “Anyone else think the red bud from BC tastes better than before?” are totally appropriate for an open forum. Unfortunately, that type of free exchange on this board is apparently impossible, given human nature and the realities of corporate bureaucracy.

Ya know, well maybe you don’t, I am not much of a bandwagon kinda chick, but I agree.

Discussion of drug use or such is just that. For all we know people could be talking out of their ass and the drug use could be just to discuss the reality of drugs in a society (pardon me non-U.S. residents as some of that doesn’t apply to you) that wages a war on substances like marijuana, cocaine, heroine, etc…

Does this mean that if we allow the discussion of drugs, in whatever fashion on the SDMB means that we are condoning it? No, I don’t think so. Even casual discussion of those that partake in threads discussing about their own usage can be useful.

In my opinion, the member should be responsible for their discussion of using “illegal drugs” and not the SDMB. If people are asking where to get “illegal substances” and such then we have major problem here. But we have open discussions about other taboo subjects here in various ways. So why is the discussion of “illegal drugs” such a difficult subject for the mods and admins to ingest?

Again, this goes to a societal thing as a whole. This isn’t about Member #96389789623409w38749876234 asking where to get some good blow, this is free discussion about a user’s experience or a question about how this blow may affect you or an observation of others on a drug. I mean the topics can be enlightening even if they seem somewhat improper for the general public at times. We discuss a lot that most people would find highly inappropriate a lot here. Part of what makes the SDMB the SDMB. Part of the reason many of us are here.

If a member wants to discuss their drug use, couldn’t this bring up other issues like the appropriate use of said “illegal substance?” Couldn’t this be a way to learn about why drugs are “illegal” and how many are harmed or not harmed by their use? Couldn’t this be a way to open more communication on the actual drug and why it might be okay to legalize it or in many people’s view, not okay?

It’s a part of our society. This will always be a part of our society and I don’t think that the SDMB or any other internet group, message board, community, can ever eradicate drugs or drug discussion from this earth. But I do think there is some responsibility for places like the SDMB to allow drug discussions of all kinds to be a part of our community because ther rest of society loves to hide behind the laws and forget that there are people that actually use them.

I said in another thread that I am not judgemental as long as people’s actions aren’t harming others. I also think this is a good topic of conversation because many believe it is harming others and many think the opposite.

So, I think the topic of drugs, outside of asking where to get some killer green bud, should be left alone. This is reality, people do drugs, a very few people I have known even die from them but over all the topic should be not really encouraged but left alone for open conversation at the member’s understanding that their discussion could lead to criminal investigation if a law enforcement officer happens across it.

I don’t want this to be a sterile message board. I am a member of a few of them and I enjoy that for when I am not so intuned to reading about someone’s flatulent dog or someone who has just passed their colonoscopy or their favorite flavor of ice cream recently tasted like ass. This is the Straight Dope, it’s a place to open and honest as long as you know that your postings could be used against you. This is a place where open discussion of most any topic should be encouraged.

Things I would hate to see would be:

Where to get pot, cocaine, heroine.
Where to get child pornography.
How to build a bomb.

Things I think should be open would be:
Man I got really stoned last night…
I heard my neighbor may have child porn on his computer, what should I do?
My neighbor built these little pipe bombs and damn, he fucking blew up his mailbox today, it was quite the show! He’s really a cool guy but you should have seen that mailbox blow up like 4th of July!

Anyhow, off my soap box. It’s late, I am tired but I don’t think that strangling every casual conversation on drugs is all that good of a thing. It’s part of our life, right, wrong, legal or illegal, people want to discuss it, why not consider letting the casual and serious threads go unless they ask specifically about how to make, obtain or sell an item that is considered illegal?

On the soap box again…can’t leave this alone…

BTW, I want to add:

If the U.S. Supreme court decided tomorrow that abortions were completely illegal, would the SDMB mods and admins state that we can’t discuss our experiences of abortion or someone who has obtained one illegally?

How about booze? It once was illegal and selling it and consuming it was illegal but it was later taken out of the Constitution.

You think these aren’t “taboo” maybe because they are both legal at this time. Because they are legal does not make them right or wrong in many people’s minds.

Abortions, in the eyes of many is a moral wrong against humanity and more and more (at least in my community and many others) it should have remained an illegal action. (Not me personally because that’s just me.)

Many have seen the ravages that alcohol does to their loved ones. Many have seen the damage that drinking and driving does. But it remains legal but it may or may not be better than any drug out there.

In either case, I would like the mods and admins to think about that because both have been illegal in the past. Both are very touchy subjects but because they are currently legal, they can be discussed freely here and anywhere.

This is totally about the SDMB remaining to be as free a place to discuss things as humanly possible. Not everyone will agree with the topic but these are parts of our society that I really do enjoy reading and sometimes discussing.

I regularly go to a music website run by my fave rock band. It’s policy there to never ‘promote’ drug use in threads, nor to ‘promote’ sexual exploration issues etc. The reasoning? Lots of kids visit the site and there’s a relatively healthy understanding amongst the adults to respect the rights of parents to prefer that their children weren’t visiting a website which is a bit too hot to handle.

If anyone ever brings up the subject, the moderators employ their common sense and close the threads down if need be. By and large it seems to work quite well. If the punters MUST know, they’re usually directed to another site.

All things being considered, it seems to work as well as things can.

The morality/wiseness of smoking mary jane is irrelevant: the fact is that it’s illegal. You can argue about the relative merits of smoking vrs drinking etc, but that has no relevance at all here. None at all. Locking the thread isn’t a moral judgement, it’s simply that the celebration of doing illegal things is really not something the Chicago Reader would want to promote. I mean, think about it. Really.

I also find it odd that we seem to not be allowed to post anything about drug use(aside from GQ and GD discussions of drug laws), but there is apparently no problem with Cecil’s column concerning ridding a marijuana plant of bugs.

Thank you!

Techchick68, instead of a ‘Where can I get righteous weed?’ thread, how do you feel about a ‘How can I score righteous weed?’ thread?

Robert Downey Jr. famously said he could score heroin in 45 minutes in any city, anywhere. Quite a trick, I think, and certainly an interesting logistical riddle. I’m curious as to just how he does it, as an intellectual exercise. I’d never buy heroin, and certainly wouldn’t encourage anyone to buy heroin, but apparently it’s readily available – and I don’t know where. I bet most other people don’t know where either. That’s ignorance.

Ignorance is ignorance. In the case of drugs, the SDMB has decided that ignorance is the best policy, no matter the columns history.

If this was the ‘Explosive Truth’ message board, an extension of an ostensibly general knowledge column carried in papers that embraced a liberal sub-culture (a sub-culture whose members frequently made pipe bombs, or at least hung out with pipe bomb makers), would it close threads dealing with explosives?

Oh yeah, Fuck off, all you motherfuckers.

I keep forgeting I’m in the Pit here. :slight_smile:

I guess discussion about those people with AIDS or cancer who smoke pot to build appetite or take the harshest edge off their treatment - that’s forbidden too? Because smoking pot is illegal?

Hey, violating the speed limit is illegal too … so the thread about Saleen S7 Mustangs should be closed, yes? How is discussing a car that goes 200mph any different from discussing a bong that delivers a smooth, clean hit?

Pedophila is very much illegal, and rightly so - what about all that talk recently from people who lust after underage girls?

Maybe the Chicago Reader saw something here they didn’t like, and told the Admins to clean it up, or they would shut town the boards.

that should say “shut down the boards”

Let’s clear up some misconceptions here.

The Straight Dope was never meant to refer to drugs or drug use; it’s a slang term not related to drugs at all. It’s actually hipster lingo and perhaps was passe even when the column started.

Years have passed and times and slang have changed. If Cecil was getting started today he might call his column “The Real Deal” or “The Straight Truth” or something similar and you would totally understand.

In 1973, “The Straight Dope” was meant to mean just what it is, the unvarnished truth.

However, far too many people associate the title with drugs. They are mistaken.

It is Reader policy and has always been our policy, as long as we’ve been in cyberspace, to limit discussion re drugs. We don’t want posts on where to buy it, how to prepare it, or anything that glorifies recreational pharmaceutical use in any fashion.

We closed the cocaine thread because why in heaven’s name would we let any of you cop to a felony, even under a screen name? In these times?

Yes, we allow some discussion, under certain rules, in certain circumstances. It’s always highly controlled and often only approved on a case by case basis.

your humble TubaDiva

I’ve got to agree with TubaDiva here. My first thought when reading the “have you done cocaine” thread was, “man, I can’t believe you’re being so blatant about doing some pretty illegal stuff in a public forum.” Not only might that possibly not be good for the reader, but seriously, would you go up to a cop and say, “I do cocaine?” Somehow I doubt it, so why do it here (especially in such a direct way as, "I do/have done cocaine. who else?)?

As much as there is anonymity on the boards, it is only by virtue of the fact that no one (so we think) bothers to figure out who we are. I’m sure that with little trouble an individual could find out the “real life” persona of just about everyone here. Be greatful that the mods are looking out for your own ass. Blatantly admitting to cocaine use in the town square is just plain dumb.

by the way, re Robert Downey Jr. quote :

I"ve said that same thing about any of my clients (offenders) who had a drug habit. “I could drop any junkie off in Omaha Nebraska and they could find the dope house w/in short time”. There isn’t really any ‘trick’ to it - any more than people can generally recognize things they’re familiar with.

So, some one who had many, many experiences w/drug houses would have a multitude of info about recognizing the signs, whereas some one w/o that info would have trouble.

My neighbors used to think one particular next door neighbor of mine was running a dope house, and would comment on it to me. I knew better (they were drinking and gambling, but not much else), but all the other folk knew was ‘there’s a lot of cars there, a lot of people there all the time’.


I have freely admitted I have done pot and cocaine, here and elsewhere on the internet.

So I am a felon, I guess, but no district attorney could prove it based on my internet words. They can’t drug test me and if they did they’d find that I am an alcoholic and not a current drug user. Also, if they did have a search warrant, I would probably get a misdemeanor for possesion of a pot pipe. I am not afraid.

People talk about their drug use, present and past all the time on the internet. I think law enforcement is more concerned with busting a big time drug ring than the casual user.

But I don’t think that discussing current and former use of drugs is all that big of a deal. Like I said before, it is our responsibility to discuss that which we wish to, most of us of legal age to drink alcohol here. I also think that discussing that which touches our lives is very important. Drugs happen to be a factor in that and shutting down threads that involve drugs but don’t involve the how or where to obtain them is really backwards in my mind.

The SDMB, no offense to the admins and mods, is increasingly reminding me of organizations like Focus on the Family. It’s okay to discuss that which might be considered taboo but only if you speak against it. This goes for other threads involving not only drugs but sex or those that pertain to sex like the scrotum about to burst thread. Geez, the guy was discussing his need to contain his sexual desire for (what I recall to be) impregnating his wife. If that were the case, it made no sense to close it.

It was humorous but also a serious topic for this particular member.


Not sure what to do. I enjoy it here and I have made a lot of friends here but when threads are closed that are pertanent (sp) to our society, I become a little gun-shy. Oh wait, next it will be closing threads that discuss guns. Then it will be closing threads that discuss alcohol. Then it will be closing threads that poopoo the idea of welfare. Then it will be…You get my point.

of course, the stewardess who testified in the Van Damme child killing case, mentioned her casual mj use and got fired from her job may have a different POV about public admissions of illegal substance use.

So, while there may be some who do not fear public exposure, others may.

I believe it is SDMB policy that what is discussed in Cece’s column is not synonymous with what is discussed here. The “marijuana bugs” arguement has been brought up before, and I think a mod or admin said that what Cecil talks about isn’t always kosher to talk about here.

So…what you’re saying is, if you don’t want it publicly known, don’t discuss it?

Pretty obvious wring so why should you, me or others suffer discussing our habits, past, life, be subjected to “censorship” because someone disagrees with use of drugs, abortion, alcohol, guns, blah, blah, blah…I may have missed the intent of your post so bear with me here.

BTW, I am expanding this to more than just drugs because of the whole slippery slope thing…yea, that’s it.