Marijuana

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Jack.H
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Marijuana

Postby Jack.H » Sat May 03, 2008 6:43 am UTC

420 In Boulder, Colorado

Fun articles aside, I'm interested in whether or not there are any serious, documented issues with marijuana use. I've looked around, and I can't find anything substantial, besides "it can be habit forming" and the whole carcinogen thing.

If anyone knows something I don't, please share!

Please NO anecdotal evidence, we don't want to hear about how pot cost you your chance at getting laid with Leggy Blonde #3708.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby SabreKGB » Sat May 03, 2008 6:49 am UTC

This one time, me and my friends were in a car and we were going through the drive through at a burger joint. We went through like ten times and each time we did, this little girl was on her bicycle just riding along in front of us across the exit. Not sure where her parents were, but anyway...so then we went through another time and we were smoking pot and because of that i randomly slammed on the gas just as she was in front of the car. And then everything went blank.

So, pot makes you kill little girls on bicycles for some reason. It's bad, m'kay?

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Kachi » Sat May 03, 2008 9:59 am UTC

“You guys need to go stand on those stairs,” one girl shouted to her friends, who were seated in a circle on the quadrangle grass. “You don’t even understand.”


You don't even understand. I don't know why I found that so humorous.

Anyway, THC seems to induce atrophy of body tissues, but I'm not sure how thoroughly it's been researched. I know you didn't want anecdotal evidence, but you've probably seen someone who at one point was fairly buff and after a relatively short period of time of heavy marijuana usage had lost a large portion of their muscle mass-- more than seems possible from simply refraining from exercise. Muscular, spinal, and testicular atrophy are just a few that I've heard tossed around.

I'm not against the legalization of marijuana-- I'd trade it for legal alcohol any day. When you compare the personal and societal detriments between the two, alcohol seems to come out far ahead.

Personally I don't use the stuff, though.

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Gunfingers
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Gunfingers » Sat May 03, 2008 4:11 pm UTC

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_issues_and_the_effects_of_cannabis

I just skimmed it, but this

THC (the main psychoactive substance in Cannabis) is known to act on the hippocampus, an area of the brain associated with memory and learning, and impairs short term memory and attention for the duration of its effects; THC impairs episodic memory and learning in a dose-dependent manner whilst not affecting perceptual priming and working memory


Stood out to me. That's a deal breaker for me. So yeah, it's a fairly safe drug and all, but it's still a drug and has it's dangers same as everything else.

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someguy
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Re: Marijuana

Postby someguy » Sat May 03, 2008 5:01 pm UTC

Kachi wrote:Anyway, THC seems to induce atrophy of body tissues, but I'm not sure how thoroughly it's been researched. I know you didn't want anecdotal evidence, but you've probably seen someone who at one point was fairly buff and after a relatively short period of time of heavy marijuana usage had lost a large portion of their muscle mass-- more than seems possible from simply refraining from exercise. Muscular, spinal, and testicular atrophy are just a few that I've heard tossed around.

Not saying it does or doesn't, but that just reminded me of this--

Image
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Re: Marijuana

Postby jimrandomh » Sat May 03, 2008 7:24 pm UTC

Gunfingers wrote:
THC (the main psychoactive substance in Cannabis) is known to act on the hippocampus, an area of the brain associated with memory and learning, and impairs short term memory and attention for the duration of its effects; THC impairs episodic memory and learning in a dose-dependent manner whilst not affecting perceptual priming and working memory


Stood out to me. That's a deal breaker for me. So yeah, it's a fairly safe drug and all, but it's still a drug and has it's dangers same as everything else.

Then it's a deal-breaker for alcohol, too, which impairs episodic memory, learning, and working memory. If you need to work, study, or otherwise use your full faculties, you don't want to be under the influence of either.

Kachi wrote:THC seems to induce atrophy of body tissues, but I'm not sure how thoroughly it's been researched. I know you didn't want anecdotal evidence, but you've probably seen someone who at one point was fairly buff and after a relatively short period of time of heavy marijuana usage had lost a large portion of their muscle mass-- more than seems possible from simply refraining from exercise. Muscular, spinal, and testicular atrophy are just a few that I've heard tossed around.

I haven't heard that, actually. Are you sure that's not due to a change in diet? Marijuana messes with appetite in a way which causes some people to eat tons of junk food. That seems like a simpler explanation for the effect you've seen. (Still a strike against marijuana, though, for those who lack or would lack discipline.)

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Re: Marijuana

Postby The Reaper » Sat May 03, 2008 9:22 pm UTC

Jack.H wrote:the whole carcinogen thing.

Isn't the whole carcinogen thing because cigarettes have filters, and joints don't?

As for arguments against marijuana that you haven't heard yet, you've got me stumped. They all sound repetitive, kinda like religion. Argued by the same people frequently too.

I fully expect it to be legal within 20 years, what with it being slightly safer than alcohol and such. The issue wasn't struck down quick enough in the beginning for any amount of police state-ness to stop it now.

Me, I'm pro-pot, but anti-abusers of anything.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Freakish » Sun May 04, 2008 1:37 am UTC

Erowid is a great site for information on drugs.

If you're smoking for your first time, the only really bad things that might happen are getting caught, and having a panic attack. Both can easily be avoided. Smoke where you won't see people like in your house (only if you don't need to worry about the smell) or in the woods. Just stay chill. I deal with my paranoia a head of time so that when I'm stoned I won't have to worry about anything.

Still assuming you're a first timer.

-You might not get stoned your first time. I didn't until my fourth.
-You might not feel it as quickly as experienced smokers. My first time I didn't feel it for about 10 minutes, now it's happens within a moment.
-If you're smoking a joint your shirt is going to stink. I usually wear a hoody while I smoke and then take it off before I enter my house.
-Follow what the more experienced smokers do, but take smaller hits. My buddy tells me that I aways smoke like a pro.
-Take smooth hits or you'll cough. When I smoke joints I'll loosen my lips around the joint to let some air in when it becomes a little harsh.
-Inhale. A lot of first timers just end up pulling smoke into their mouth and letting it out. Don't.
-Continue inhaling after you've taking your lips off the device/joint. If you let the smoke idle in your throat it will burn a bit. Constantly inhaling will get it all into your lungs.
-Don't wet lip the joint. It's just bad smoking edict.
-Bring water. I aways bring a bottle of water with me to drink during and after I smoke.
-Chill. Don't run around like an idiot annoying everyone.
-Notice your high. The first thing I noticed was the time distortion. I can spend half my high just examining my high, it's in describable. I wrote a post during my first high, about my first high
Spoiler:
Freakish wrote:Okay... I think I've got a buzz. It's not feeling like I thought it would. Could be something else though. Everything before a minute ago feels like a dream, like I passed out, woke up and dreamt of me going outside and smoking the weed. Kind of hard to explain. Everything feels like it's moving when I loose focus. I've kind of got a tingly feeling in my arms. Kind of hard to focus on writing. My thoughts feel clear, like I'm thinking normally, but my body is acting differently. I've been writing this since 3:00 it's taking me quite a while. I feel like my eyes are zooming back and forth on what ever I look at. I don't think I'm feeling anything else.

---edit--- 3:26 am

Okay the smiling and laughter has come

-Bring some sort of time device. When I'm high it feels like it's been hours and seconds so I like to know what time it actually is.
-Not every thought needs to be voiced. If it's not part of a conversation don't say it. Everyone doesn't need to hear your stoned theories.
-Don't be a mooch. If you don't have any weed to chip in bring some food.

That's all I can think of right now. If I've forgotten anything add to it people.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Cooley » Sun May 04, 2008 2:56 am UTC

It's amazing how common-sense experience sounds in hindsight.

Damn I think I just defined hindsight.

Good advice though.

Marijuana=good. Way better than cigs at least.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby goblin_subway » Sun May 04, 2008 5:36 am UTC

Ok, a quick history lesson.

Outlawing a long-held legal chemical (prohibition of alcohol) led to the formation of the bulk of modern crime syndicates in America. Legalizing that same chemical... again... dropped their influence for a decent amount of time. Taking a previously illegal drug, regardless of how benign it is, and then making it legal severely upsets the balance much in the same way a prohibition, but in reverse. It may sound ass-backward, but the status-quo does seem to function to a certain extent.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Cooley » Sun May 04, 2008 6:08 am UTC

I don't get it. Is that necessarily a bad thing?

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Re: Marijuana

Postby The Reaper » Sun May 04, 2008 6:21 am UTC

goblin_subway wrote:Ok, a quick history lesson.

Outlawing a long-held legal chemical (prohibition of alcohol) led to the formation of the bulk of modern crime syndicates in America. Legalizing that same chemical... again... dropped their influence for a decent amount of time. Taking a previously illegal drug, regardless of how benign it is, and then making it legal severely upsets the balance much in the same way a prohibition, but in reverse. It may sound ass-backward, but the status-quo does seem to function to a certain extent.

I think the biggest limiting factor to the legalization of pot is the fact that most of the people that want it are potheads. Not exactly putting their best foot forward. Back in the prohibition days, even the upper-class business elites wanted it alcohol, it was mostly women backing the movement.

I think all the potheads should put on a nice suit, be completely sober, and push pot legalization for a few days at congress while it's in session. Would be a great change from the tie-dyed t-shirt and sandal wearing poster potheads.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Morglor9 » Sun May 04, 2008 9:01 am UTC

I happen to think that there are much, much more important issues in the world than legalizing pot. Honestly, if these people who felt they were empowered to be part of some new movement towards legalization put this energy elsewhere, they could accomplish something useful. In that article it was even mentioned that the turnout was similar to a good sized peace rally, so... why not actually have a peace rally? Or some other kind of protest, for or against something that matters beyond your own leisure choices?

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Re: Marijuana

Postby schmiggen » Sun May 04, 2008 9:07 am UTC

There's more to the issue than "please, can we smoke some pot?"

Some of these things are: ridiculous jailtime punishments for possession, emphasized existence of a dangerous illegal market, stupidity and slippery-slope-ness of a prohibitive policy as hypocritically arbitrary as anti-marijuana seems, etc., some of which have even been mentioned in this thread already.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Morglor9 » Sun May 04, 2008 9:13 am UTC

Well, I'm basing my opinion off of Canadian law, because I am Canadian, and here the police don't care about possession if it's small enough that you couldn't be selling and distributing. They just take it and tell you to go home.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby schmiggen » Sun May 04, 2008 9:25 am UTC

Isn't that part of the discussion, though? Why, if it is not problematic to consume the drug, is it problematic to sell/distribute it? And why should they be able to take it from you?

From a legal standpoint, the assumption has been made that alcohol is less problematic in that it is okay for people to use it and sell it and such. If there are problems that could arise from prohibiting the use/sale/etc. of marijuana, such as unnecessary inflated prison populations, dangerous/underground/criminal drug dealing organizations, and if something (alcohol) with effects apparently worse than marijuana's effects is legal and regulated, I think this issue is still reasonably important.

The same argument about the importance of an issue has been made before, about many other issues, and I think the response I've seen in those cases is appropriate here, too: The most important issues of the day are not the only issues of the day. As long as something is worthy of discussion, worthy of acting to change, then it's not a very strong point to make that it is not most worthy.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby mazzilliu » Sun May 04, 2008 10:16 am UTC

There's a federal decriminalization bill in the works, that says it's okay to possess up to a certain amount in weight. It doesn't address how you're supposed to get ahold of it, though :? (not like it will ever pass)

Drug law is bizzare and arbitrary. Full and complete enforcement would require breaking most of the rights allowed people by the constitution, and the partial enforcement done so far has led to erosion of most of them(especially privacy laws and search & seizure laws). It's supposed to "protect us" but the vast majority of the time the legal side effects are worse then the drug itself. people like to blame America's crime problem partially on drugs- its not the nature of the chemical that caused the crime situation, it's the fact that there's demand for the chemical and that it's illegal, and the demand is not going away.

Also, it's funny sometimes when I see people arguing that some chemical or another should remain scheduled as it already is because we don't know a lot about it and it could hurt users. The scheduling system makes it extremely difficult to get any research done due to the difficulty in obtaining authorization to handle the chemicals involved, and then buying them from the government's authorized suppliers(i hear government weed is terrible for research because its so weak). And if you think MJ has very little research in proportion to how much potential it has, think of all the lesser known schedule I substances like LSD, ibogaine, heroin, etc. They get hardly any research whatsoever as the hurdles are so hard to get through. Self fulfilling prophecy, didn't want that potential new medical use anyways.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby SabreKGB » Sun May 04, 2008 10:18 am UTC

Morglor9 wrote:I happen to think that there are much, much more important issues in the world than legalizing pot. Honestly, if these people who felt they were empowered to be part of some new movement towards legalization put this energy elsewhere, they could accomplish something useful. In that article it was even mentioned that the turnout was similar to a good sized peace rally, so... why not actually have a peace rally? Or some other kind of protest, for or against something that matters beyond your own leisure choices?


Because it's not just a leisure choice, it a violation of rights.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby niolosoiale » Sun May 04, 2008 2:50 pm UTC

When you compare the personal and societal detriments between the two, alcohol seems to come out far ahead.
What are you meaning when you say "alcohol seems to come out far ahead"? Because last time I checked, alcoholics were causing a lot more problems than pot heads and more people were dying from/as a result of alcoholism than the use of cannabis. I don't understand if you agree with that statement or not, but anyone would be grasping at straws trying to tell me that cannabis is more detrimental than alcohol.

Outlawing a long-held legal chemical (prohibition of alcohol) led to the formation of the bulk of modern crime syndicates in America. Legalizing that same chemical... again... dropped their influence for a decent amount of time. Taking a previously illegal drug, regardless of how benign it is, and then making it legal severely upsets the balance much in the same way a prohibition, but in reverse. It may sound ass-backward, but the status-quo does seem to function to a certain extent.
I fail to see how the status-quo, as it stands, is really functioning in a productive manner. The legalization of cannabis will have a very marginal effect on it's use. It's moderate use has effectively been determined to more than typically cause little to no harm for the users of or those around. However, the government spends billions of dollars a year on enforcement which, more often than not, puts the wrong people on the wrong side of the law doing more to ruin lives than should be allowed for such a petty act. That fact, in and of itself, does more to argue against the status-quo than anything. It's a waste of our resources (yes, YOU are paying to prosecute all those potheads which you only have the slightest reason to give a fuck about because of the fact you're paying for the enforcement of an absurd law) and it's a waste of time. America doesn't have time or money to waste on those of us who smoke weed.

I think the biggest limiting factor to the legalization of pot is the fact that most of the people that want it are potheads. Not exactly putting their best foot forward. Back in the prohibition days, even the upper-class business elites wanted it alcohol, it was mostly women backing the movement.

I think all the potheads should put on a nice suit, be completely sober, and push pot legalization for a few days at congress while it's in session. Would be a great change from the tie-dyed t-shirt and sandal wearing poster potheads.
The biggest limiting factor is that there are still people around and in charge who were indoctrinated by the fear-mongering propaganda from the past 50 years. Changing one's clothes won't change anyone's mind about things they have had crammed down their throat. People need to be shown just how much is wasted on federal enforcement.

I happen to think that there are much, much more important issues in the world than legalizing pot. Honestly, if these people who felt they were empowered to be part of some new movement towards legalization put this energy elsewhere, they could accomplish something useful. In that article it was even mentioned that the turnout was similar to a good sized peace rally, so... why not actually have a peace rally? Or some other kind of protest, for or against something that matters beyond your own leisure choices?
Those who stand for decriminalization stand for peace. The "War on Drugs" is a war on our own people. Upstanding people who smoke weed are criminalized for something which has little to do with hurt to one's self or others that isn't directly inflicted by the enforcement of it's criminalization. The usage of cannabis isn't ruining lives; the DEA, however, certainly is.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Jack.H » Sun May 04, 2008 4:12 pm UTC

Gunfingers wrote:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_issues_and_the_effects_of_cannabis

I just skimmed it, but this

THC (the main psychoactive substance in Cannabis) is known to act on the hippocampus, an area of the brain associated with memory and learning, and impairs short term memory and attention for the duration of its effects; THC impairs episodic memory and learning in a dose-dependent manner whilst not affecting perceptual priming and working memory


Stood out to me. That's a deal breaker for me. So yeah, it's a fairly safe drug and all, but it's still a drug and has it's dangers same as everything else.


The next few lines from that article:
Cannabis was found to be neuroprotective against excitotoxicity and is therefore beneficial for the prevention of progressive degenerative diseases like Alzheimer's disease.

A 1998 report by INSERM and CNRS, which was directed by Dr. Pierre-Bernard Roques, determined that, "former results suggesting anatomic changes in the brain of chronic cannabis users, measured by tomography, were not confirmed by the accurate modern neuro-imaging techniques (such as MRI) ... Moreover, morphological impairment of the hippocampus [which plays a part in memory and navigation] of rat after administration of very high doses of THC was not shown". He concluded that cannabis does not have any neurotoxicity as defined in the report, unlike alcohol and cocaine.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Kachi » Mon May 05, 2008 5:33 am UTC

Are you sure that's not due to a change in diet? Marijuana messes with appetite in a way which causes some people to eat tons of junk food. That seems like a simpler explanation for the effect you've seen. (Still a strike against marijuana, though, for those who lack or would lack discipline.)


You don't lose muscle mass from a change of diet unless you're severely depriving your body of protein, certainly not the cause of atrophy for the potheads I knew. You might gain or lose body fat, but not muscle.

Outlawing a long-held legal chemical (prohibition of alcohol) led to the formation of the bulk of modern crime syndicates in America. Legalizing that same chemical... again... dropped their influence for a decent amount of time. Taking a previously illegal drug, regardless of how benign it is, and then making it legal severely upsets the balance much in the same way a prohibition, but in reverse. It may sound ass-backward, but the status-quo does seem to function to a certain extent.


I assume that this was in response to my statement about trading the legalization. I was just speaking hypothetically. I realize that prohibition would be entirely detrimental.

I happen to think that there are much, much more important issues in the world than legalizing pot. Honestly, if these people who felt they were empowered to be part of some new movement towards legalization put this energy elsewhere, they could accomplish something useful. In that article it was even mentioned that the turnout was similar to a good sized peace rally, so... why not actually have a peace rally? Or some other kind of protest, for or against something that matters beyond your own leisure choices?


I think a sizeable portion of pot users would be doing just that, if they weren't in jail.

This is an issue of criminalization. You may think it's not important, but you're not getting arrested, sent to jail, or gaining a criminal record for an activity that is relatively harmless. Personally I take criminalization very seriously-- people's careers and lives are at stake.

What are you meaning when you say "alcohol seems to come out far ahead"? Because last time I checked, alcoholics were causing a lot more problems than pot heads and more people were dying from/as a result of alcoholism than the use of cannabis. I don't understand if you agree with that statement or not, but anyone would be grasping at straws trying to tell me that cannabis is more detrimental than alcohol.


Sorry, I thought it was fairly obvious from the context that I was stating exactly what you just said. Alcohol causes greater personal and societal detriment than marijuana would if legalized.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby DeadCatX2 » Mon May 05, 2008 6:50 pm UTC

The Reaper wrote:
Jack.H wrote:the whole carcinogen thing.

Isn't the whole carcinogen thing because cigarettes have filters, and joints don't?

Forgetting for a moment about the extra chemicals Big Tobacco adds to make cigarettes worse (formaldehyde, fiberglass, etc), does the filter in a cigarette make up for the order of magnitude more plant matter that a typical cigarette smoker burns?

Also, there are other methods of consumption besides smoking. I wonder how many burn-outs wouldn't be so burnt out if they used a vaporizer to avoid consuming excess plant particulates. Perhaps it's not THC itself, but the most common delivery mechanism, that is responsible for some of the problems experienced by the users.


Morglor9 wrote:I happen to think that there are much, much more important issues in the world than legalizing pot. Honestly, if these people who felt they were empowered to be part of some new movement towards legalization put this energy elsewhere, they could accomplish something useful. In that article it was even mentioned that the turnout was similar to a good sized peace rally, so... why not actually have a peace rally? Or some other kind of protest, for or against something that matters beyond your own leisure choices?

According to the New York Times, 1 in 99.1 American adults are behind bars. That's roughly 2.3 million people. I wonder what percentage of them are in there for minor drug-related offenses. I wonder how many thousands, or tens of thousands, or even hundreds of thousands, of people are suffering because the law considers it illegal to put certain chemicals into your own blood stream. Many lives have been ruined, many more will be ruined, and you think this is only a matter of "leisure choice"?

I'll bet more American lives have been ruined due to the War on Drugs than 9/11.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Cooley » Tue May 06, 2008 1:01 am UTC

DeadCatX2 wrote:I'll bet more American lives have been ruined due to the War on Drugs than 9/11.


And the ensuing war on terror that our leaders are putting our country through? Maybe. I think it'd be close.
I wonder if the War on Drugs is going to be the straw that broke the camel's back and destabilize America?

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Re: Marijuana

Postby The Reaper » Tue May 06, 2008 2:19 am UTC

Cooley wrote:
DeadCatX2 wrote:I'll bet more American lives have been ruined due to the War on Drugs than 9/11.


And the ensuing war on terror that our leaders are putting our country through? Maybe. I think it'd be close.
I wonder if the War on Drugs is going to be the straw that broke the camel's back and destabilize America?

Wait wait wait, so you mean, with better weapon technology and more people involved, more people die, as well? Oh noes!
/sarcasm

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Shai » Tue May 06, 2008 3:56 am UTC

I'm not sure if this is a regurgitation of points of others, but I don't tend to troll marijuana debates so forgive me if it is.

I've always thought that the legalization and taxation of marijuana could be extremely profitable, and could perhaps then lead towards fighting more serious drugs, such as meth. Being able to buy pot at the local convenient store could also mean the source of marijuana is safer (theoretically) - you can be more confident it's not laced with something.

As for an argument against, well, drug dealers will have to start pushing different drugs for the quick buck. I don't think the legalization of marijuana would effect crime as much as I really would like to think, since the dealers and other criminals would still want to make money and would just need to find something different to sell.

I'm pro-legalization, though. I had to quit for legal reasons, but I don't think I've EVER slept so well as when I went to bed high. I might not ever again.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby DeadCatX2 » Tue May 06, 2008 3:24 pm UTC

Cooley wrote:
DeadCatX2 wrote:I'll bet more American lives have been ruined due to the War on Drugs than 9/11.

And the ensuing war on terror that our leaders are putting our country through? Maybe. I think it'd be close.
I wonder if the War on Drugs is going to be the straw that broke the camel's back and destabilize America?

I think the GWOT has done more to ruin the world altogether, since the War on Drugs targets only Americans. The GWOT definitely has contributed significantly to America's decline, but it is a straw man to consider that I said it does not.

The point was that the War on Drugs is not some trivial "leisure matter". It is a tragedy, but as a general rule people don't care about drug addicts, which is ironic because most Americans are addicted to some drug (caffeine, nicotine, etc) and using drugs does not necessarily mean you're abusing drugs. People think addicts "had it coming" and so have no sympathy, or consider it a cause not worth fighting for.

Besides, the GWOT was a ripple effect resulting from 9/11. If you want to consider ripple effects, then don't forget about the people enforcing drug laws who could spend their time contributing to society (for instance, by hunting down murderers and rapists and thieves, who actually do harm to other people). Effects of the inevitable black market that pops up in the absence of a well-regulated market. Poor information as a result of government propaganda and the stigma associated with drugs (e.g. medical research that is difficult to do because the drugs are illegal). People's lives being ruined by drugs because there is no regulation (abuse, overdose). People avoid getting help because of the stigma.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby sophyturtle » Tue May 06, 2008 3:35 pm UTC

Gunfingers wrote:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_issues_and_the_effects_of_cannabis

I just skimmed it, but this

THC (the main psychoactive substance in Cannabis) is known to act on the hippocampus, an area of the brain associated with memory and learning, and impairs short term memory and attention for the duration of its effects; THC impairs episodic memory and learning in a dose-dependent manner whilst not affecting perceptual priming and working memory


Stood out to me. That's a deal breaker for me. So yeah, it's a fairly safe drug and all, but it's still a drug and has it's dangers same as everything else.


The short term memory it impairs is while you are high. It is motabilized quickly in the brain. It does not actually damage the tissue, but slow the connections.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby mazzilliu » Tue May 06, 2008 5:53 pm UTC

DeadCatX2 wrote:I think the GWOT has done more to ruin the world altogether, since the War on Drugs targets only Americans. The GWOT definitely has contributed significantly to America's decline, but it is a straw man to consider that I said it does not.

this is completely not true. just because damage caused by the war on drugs isn't as widely printed as that from terrorism doesn't mean it's not there. first of all the war on drugs has directly funded terrorists for years. by forcing demand(that will not go away no matter what we do) to be satisfied by underhanded means, we end up with afghanistan's #1 export being poppy and marijuana products, and large amounts of money funneled straight from americans(no matter how much we like to hate these americans) to organized crime, which includes terrorists. in south america, we've created and sustained a huge coca and marijuana crop with our demand, and then destabilized governments as those criminal forces grow in power and are eventually able to destabilize the legitimate government, then how do we respond? shows of force, sending troops and aid and herbicide dusting and other band-aid solutions that are good politics, but get people killed.

if you really care about the war on terror, then you would probably want to stop feeding the terrorists money WHILE you're throwing troops at them. maybe its bad politics to recognize that burning down fields occasionally isn't going to make them stay burnt down, but until that happens we're going to have to deal with problems like super powerful criminal organizations.
(and no, dumb ads like "you buy drugs you're supporting terrorists!" isn't going to reduce demand 1 bit)

citations....
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narcotraff ... n_Colombia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revolution ... f_Colombia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium_prod ... fghanistan
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4305692.stm (bbc article about drug smuggling in turkey)
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Re: Marijuana

Postby goblin_subway » Wed May 07, 2008 2:16 am UTC

Oh, I see your point. I think it is something along the lines of:
Image

EDIT: this refers to the last few posters, not just the one directly above my post.
Last edited by goblin_subway on Wed May 07, 2008 2:40 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby arcticfox.sq » Wed May 07, 2008 2:34 am UTC

I was, very recently, one of those who believe what the authority figures have been telling me all my life (DRUGS BAD) until a friend of mine convinced me to read up and do a little research and I was very surprised that weed is actually still illegal in Canada. I do believe that the legalization of certain drugs will happen within my lifetime but they would probably be heavily regulated, more so than alcohol/tobacco ie expensive licenses to sell, heavy taxing, use on public property etc. I doubt anyone would be buy pot from the convenience store anytime soon.
Image

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Re: Marijuana

Postby DeadCatX2 » Thu May 08, 2008 4:44 pm UTC

Medical marijuana in California is actually really easy to get a hold of. Nearly "convenience store" easy.

Another town in the midwest somewhere (don't remember where) passed a referendum during a vote saying that the enforcement of laws against marijuana is to be the police department's lowest priority.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby meat.paste » Fri May 09, 2008 2:19 pm UTC

I read a news summary of a new government report (found at http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080509/ap_on_he_me/teens_drugs). I'm ticked off right now. One of my (many) pet peeves is confusing correlation with causality. This is an issue for humans in general and the US society specifically.

The report shows that depression and pot use are correlated. Instead of expressing the possibility that undiagnosed depressed teens are self medicating with pot because it makes them feel better, the report says that pot is super bad because teen users are more likely to get depressed. Use some science in your reports, bitches! :P
Huh? What?

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Alpha Omicron » Fri May 09, 2008 5:34 pm UTC

arcticfox.sq wrote:I was, very recently, one of those who believe what the authority figures have been telling me all my life (DRUGS BAD) until a friend of mine convinced me to read up and do a little research and I was very surprised that weed is actually still illegal in Canada. I do believe that the legalization of certain drugs will happen within my lifetime but they would probably be heavily regulated, more so than alcohol/tobacco ie expensive licenses to sell, heavy taxing, use on public property etc. I doubt anyone would be buy pot from the convenience store anytime soon.


May I recommend the Senate Commitee Recommendation on Marijuana.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby seladore » Sat May 10, 2008 1:46 pm UTC

I heard yesterday, on Radio 4, a lady with the point of view that all drugs are equivalent - cannabis is the same as heroin in her eyes: harmful, illegal, and should remain so. This got a huge round of applause.

My issue with this idea (which I'm sure is shared by many a conservative policy maker [the idea, not the issue with it] ) is that when people, almost inevitably, come across cannabis culture and find that it is, in fact, pretty harmless, they may think something like, "Wow, the government has always said all drugs are bad. But actually, cannabis seems harmless. So, I bet heroin and crack cocaine are equally harmless! Off to the crack house..."

We need to end uneducated hysteria about drugs, and start treating people like intelligent adults who deserve to be told the truth. E.g. ;
- All drugs are, to some extent, harmful.
- There is a spectrum of harm : some drugs are more harmful than others.
- You have to weigh up how much you want the experience of the drug, with the risks of taking it.

And let people know the real experiences, the real risks, so they can make their own damn choices.



On an unrelated note, I don't see why it would not be beneficial for governments to legalise Cannabis, and be able to tax the hell out of it like they do for tobacco and alcohol. They could make a fortune.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby Alpha Omicron » Sat May 10, 2008 8:34 pm UTC

DeadCatX2 wrote:... since the War on Drugs targets only Americans.

Not so. See http://forums.xkcd.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=21664
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Turambar » Sat May 10, 2008 10:18 pm UTC

Marijuana isn't harmless, no drug is, but it's a great deal safer than alcohol or tobacco. Contrary to popular belief, it does NOT cause cancer (see Donald Tashkin's study). It is still harmful to the lungs and is associated with increased risk of bronchitis and chronic respiratory infections. It can cause significant impairment to short term memory and cognitive function while present in the body, but does not do a great deal of lasting damage to the brain. Prolonged use does seems to cause some permanent drooping in the eyelids. It can, however, sometimes take as much as months for THC to be fully removed from the system, as it is lipid-soluble and so gets stored in fat cells rather than in the body's water, like most drugs.

Alcohol and tobacco both kill thousands of times as many people as marijuana and are far more addictive. As long as those two are legal, there is no reason to be spending hundreds of millions of dollars a year on hunting down, prosecuting, and incarcerating people for the use and sale of marijuana. And as for the gateway drug aspect of it, that is due mainly to the fact that the markets for marijuana and other drugs have been conflated because of illegality. Marijuana's not a gateway drug in the Netherlands.

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Re: Marijuana

Postby vqcg » Sun May 11, 2008 8:06 am UTC

I'm surprised no-one in the UK has mentioned in this thread the reclassification of weed to class-B, and how much this is complete bullshit.
Of course, it's the kind of thing I'd expect from Jacqui "ID cards are unhackable" Smith.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby goblin_subway » Sun May 11, 2008 8:10 am UTC

It's amazing. I really used to care about the whole pot legality thing a couple weeks ago. I realized yesterday that I had not smoked up in over four years. I no longer care. Go on about your business people.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Spoffin » Tue May 13, 2008 1:10 am UTC

The Reaper wrote:I fully expect it to be legal within 20 years, what with it being slightly safer than alcohol and such.
They've been thinking that since the 60s.
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Re: Marijuana

Postby Okita » Tue May 13, 2008 4:46 am UTC

I find some comfort in that laws can be repealed.

Now why do I bring this up? In the United States, as the theory goes, the legislative branch is supposed to represent the people within the government. In fact, some would say this is a major problem since politicians are focused entirely on pleasing their constituents and getting re-elected instead of doing the right thing.

So I find calls for the decriminalization of marijuana sort of silly. Sure, you have protests on 4/20 and weed rallies in general, but I suspect that your average pothead would love to have decriminalized weed but frankly couldn't be bothered to care and write to Congress or perhaps vote and get other weed smokers or weed sympathizers to vote for someone who is committed to weed decriminalization. And I think that article hints that the majority of those at 4/20 aren't really protesting as much as they just want to get high with less reprecussions as usual.

Strangely enough, the polls say that about 80% of Americans would support doctors being able to prescribe medicinal marijuana. And yet it's apparently not enough of an issue that I hear a lot of people saying "Obama should be President because not only X reason but also he wants to change federal policy with regards drugs".

There are compelling reasons to legalize marijuana and there are not as many compelling arguments against it as there were before. But somehow, while almost every pothead I've met will vehemently claim that marijuana should be legal, I don't see politicians keeping it on high priority. I find that a signifier that the populace doesn't really care.

Should marijuana be legalized? I don't really know and I don't think there's enough information to state for sure. But I personally find little compelling reason to discuss it and frankly I don't expect politicians to really care until a significant number of weed smokers and weed sympathizers rise up and call on Congress to do it, educate people as to how weed is okay and not a danger/ provide the necessary research in countries who can legally research it.

But maybe they're too busy being high to do so.
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