am-bi-tious ad-dict:

1: Anyone who dances the line between reality and fantasy and does so with poise, melding the best of both into a richer existence.

2: A dreamer who identifies with the underdog, the overlooked, while seeking upliftment.

3: One who has mastered, if not conquered, his demons for his own benefit. Instead of turning away from his fetish-hangup-obsession, he welcomes it, but as a supplement to life, not a replacement.

The AmbitiousAddict encourages communication, debate and cooperation among the world's responsible drug users. Critics say there is no such thing as recreational drug use. If you use, then you are at best an underachiever, at worst a pariah, a parasite. Steady but controlled users are disdained as junkies while true addicts are locked up as criminals. Abstinence is the lone solution being offered, no matter how impractical.

Forget that the pharmaceutical companies - with the FDA's blessing - are pushing their own uppers and downers, attention expanders and mood enhancers. Sure they might make you impotent, give you diarrhea, or cause you a host of other nasty problems, but each pill comes practically prepackaged with a list of the accompanying antidotes for each symptom.

Forget the many contributions made by users. It's too easy to highlight drug-addled artists. After all, what school child wasn't recommended Coleridge's opium-induced poetry or van Gogh's absinthe-laced paintings? And music? Forget about it... Regular users, folks that toil relentlessly in virtually every profession, accomplish good deeds everyday but aren't shielded by such titles. Isn't there art in every task? Shouldn't there be?

Forget the countless studies and opinions (National Institutes of Health, National Academy of Sciences, Journal of Neuroscience, Journal of Clinical Oncology, and New England Journal of Medicine, to name a few) that state unequivocably drug laws punish the otherwise normal and force those truly needing help into hiding.

All of this is common knowledge, yet public perception remains the same. Any time spent in one of these altered states is time wasted. No, not just wasted, but dedicated to the undoing of civilization as we know it. If you think this is hyperbole, visit your local lockup and find out the percentage of inmates being held on minor drug charges.

We cannot deny there is much of our world that remains mysterious. Just a hundred years ago, quantum mechanics sounded like make believe. A few centuries before that, the electricity we have enveloped ourselves in was little more than poltergeists. A round Earth was once unthinkable and a Sun-centric planetary system heresy. So why is playing with our own minds considered a crime?

If you're an addict in the eyes of the world, this is your chance to define what that should mean. Speak up however you can, wherever you can to make your beliefs and practices known. If we stop hiding our pasts, we can prove ourselves worthy of the future.

The choice, as always, is ours.

-The AmbitiousAddict