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Mon, Jan 15


THH 348C


Government Regulation of Morality from Marijuana to Prostitution

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Time & Location

Jan 15, 2018, 6:00 PM

THH 348C, 3501 Trousdale Pkwy, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA

About the event

States of Sin: Government Regulation of Morality from Marijuana to Prostitution

Levan's Salon Series is a discussion series facilitated by Levan Fellows and directed by Brianna Johnson, dedicated to examining ambiguous ethical questions in society. Discussions will be framed around articles or topics that participants will be expected to engage with before meeting.

“Good people don’t smoke marijuana,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions once said. His claim helped explain his vocal demonization of the drug, a demonization that includes the reversal of an Obama-era policy which gave states the authority over marijuana legalization. His statement and the ensuing responses emphasizing the (a)morality of smokers highlights a tension in historical American values - the puritanism that abstains from alcohol and sex, and the wild west culture of prostitutes, guns, and freedom. Whether or not the government has any business regulating drugs, alcohol, or sex for purely moral reasons has fascinated our politics for centuries, and will likely continue to do so. It makes sense for a society to prioritize its being moral - what else is there to strive for? But the existence of “morality laws” suggests that there is one morality, one set of ethics predetermined by the powers that be; however, every set of ethics is controversial to a certain degree. In the end, who decides what a “moral” society looks like, or what values are prioritized, seems to rely on the interests of the rich and powerful. Help us grapple with these questions this coming MLK Day, January 15th from 6-7:30pm in THH 348C. If they do not solve all controversies complete, sin-fully good tacos will at least help the conversation flow smoothly.

Why We Can't Help But Legislate Morality, The Public Discourse

Prostitution, Morality, and the Law, The Atlantic

Why We Can and Should Legislate Morality, The Federalist

Legislating Morality After Prohibition, First Things Journal on Religion and Public Life

D. L Hughley on Legislating Morality, Comedy Central

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