Everybody's waxing nostalgic for Woodstock this year, being how it's the fortieth anniversary and all. At least the record companies sure are, as you can't turn around without seeing yet another commemorative ash tray or roach clip bearing the three days of peace and music logo on the shelves. Yeah, there's still lots of money to be made off of all that peace, love, and music shit, even forty years later. They might not of cashed in as much as they'd have like to back in the day, but the music industry is making up for lost time now.
Naturally they're downplaying the whole drug thing, except for the occasional mention of how tragic it was that so many of those who performed had their lives and careers cut short supposedly because of drugs. Nobody wants to say that drugs were fun, because that's not the message we want to send in this post-"Just Say No"/War On Drugs era. Even though we've moved on to bigger and better things like the War On Terror, nobody's forgotten Nancy's message, have they? But the reality remains that — horror of horrors — people did a shitload of drugs back in the day and no amount of corporate whitewashing will disguise that fact.
The other bit that they don't seem to want to talk about is how forty years ago in 1969 the whole peace and love trip started to wither on the vine. Not only did that year mark the ascension of Richard Nixon to the throne in Washington, but the Prince of Darkness himself, Ronald Ray-guns, had been governor of California since 1967. Happy Ronnie, who was only glad to help finger Commies in the fifties for Joe McCarthy and his Un-Americans, did his best to fight free love, free speech, and all those other ungodly behaviours those long haired layabouts were engaging in. By the time 1969 washed up on the beach in California, heads were already looking over their shoulders to see where the long arm of the law was every time they lit up a joint. Of course, with paranoia being such a bosom buddy of most drugs to begin with it didn't take much to fuel the massive rip tides of mistrust that started pulling folks under in the late sixties.