Huffpost Politics
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Steve Siebold Headshot

America Becomes More Progressive Through Pot and Gay Marriage Legalization

Posted: Updated:

It was a big week for America as Washington State Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law a measure that legalizes same-sex marriage in Washington State, and in Maryland, same sex couples could start applying for post-dated marriage licenses that will take effect January 1.

In addition, Washington State becomes the first state to legalize marijuana, removing criminal sanctions for anyone 21 or older possessing one ounce (28.5 grams) or less of pot. However, it is still illegal to smoke pot in public or to sell it.

These are all great strides in America's efforts to move forward and be more progressive. The big problem is that our society is still an army of drones, unwilling to think independently. Whether it's teachers, politicians or religious leaders, everyone seems to be telling us what to think and how to live. It has to stop in order for America to survive.

It's time for us to wake up and realize that just because someone holds what's deemed to be a position of power (politician, public figure, religious or educational organization) doesn't necessarily mean any of these people are any smarter than us; none are morally superior nor can they prove their way is the right way. It's time to start taking control of our own lives and start thinking for ourselves.

Thankfully, voters in Washington and Maryland took a stance in the November elections to allow gay marriage, and will become the seventh and eighth states to legally recognize same sex couples. And thankfully voters in Washington and Colorado took a stance and decided to make marijuana legal in those states. Now it's time for the rest of the country to follow suit.

Our leaders in Washington are lost. Democrats are creating a nanny state while Republicans are promoting puritanical dogma. The net result is America is losing ground. In order to maintain our superpower status, we need to elect mentally tough politicians capable of critical thinking.

From the financial disaster of Obamacare to the social bigotry towards the gay rights movement, we have elected leaders who are either fiscally or socially irresponsible. It's time to send serious leaders to Washington to solve the complex problems we face in the 21st century while simultaneously moving forward toward creating a more socially progressive, self-reliant society.

The fundamental question we must answer is who should be running our lives and dictating how we live. Marijuana and gay rights are just the beginning; our nation faces a plethora of social issues that must be dealt with.

For example:

- Does the government really have the right to send an 18-year old to war but deny him the right to drink?
- Should the pharmaceutical industry be demonized for being successful?
- Should religious leaders carry so much influence in government when the premise of their argument can't be proved?
- Shouldn't American citizens have the freedom to live their lives without limits as long as they're not hurting anyone else or infringing on others' rights?
- Why is euthanasia legal for animals, but assisted suicide illegal for humans who are suffering with an incurable disease and living in constant pain?
- Wouldn't it be wise to legalize all the victimless crimes that are flooding our jails and pay off the national debt with tax revenues and savings from drugs, prostitution and gambling?
- Why was 2012 the first time we put away a Catholic Church leader for sexually abusing little boys?
- Why should those who feel they were born the wrong gender suffer through life when they have the opportunity to change?
- How can marriage be the foundation of American society with a 50 percent divorce rate and a substantial percentage of couples who are unhappily married?

The issues are endless, and the only way to save America is to ask Americans to save themselves. The problem is when it comes to discussing the critical social issues of our time, we have the collective emotional maturity of an adolescent. We adamantly and sometimes viciously defend beliefs and philosophies that were conceived during the Dark Ages. It's time for America to grow up emotionally, shed the dogma of our puritanical roots, and take our place among the most socially evolved nations in the world. It will take a psychological revolution to make this happen.