Skip to comments.One Reporter's Opinion – Never Legalize Pot!
Posted on 06/10/2005 2:32:31 PM PDT by Nachum
It is this reporter's opinion that each generation in turn takes a new look at the marijuana question. Now it's this generation's turn. In a 6-to-3 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that federal anti-marijuana statutes overrule the laws in ten states that allow the use of marijuana plants to ease pain or nausea.
Fifty years ago, as a much younger television reporter, I did a series of interviews with Dr. Hardin B. Jones, Professor of Medical Physics and Physiology at the University of California Berkeley. Dr. Jones, in his thorough study, raised disturbing questions about marijuana's effects on the vital systems of the body, on the brain and mind, on immunity and resistance, and on sex reproduction.
Dr. Jones addressed such problems of society as the hazards to non-smokers, crime, the law, and the effect of widespread smoking among the military including atomic weapons personnel. And he didn't stop there. The good doctor included telling comments from interviews conducted with scores of marijuana users and ex-users.
I concluded, after this exhaustive study, that the very idea of legalizing marijuana is to follow a senseless, immoral, perilous path a slippery slope, that the use of marijuana is dangerous on many fronts, that it impairs memory, alters time perception, reduces coordination, damages the immune system, is psychologically habit-forming and creates a wide range of effects on moods and behavior.
Dr. Jones offered an open letter to parents. Following are the main points discussed in his letter:
Marijuana is not a benign drug. Use of this drug impairs learning and judgment and may lead to the development of mental health problems.
Smoking marijuana can injure or destroy lung tissue.
Teens who are high on marijuana are less able to make safe, smart decisions about sex, including knowing when to say "no."
Marijuana can impair perception and reaction time, putting young drivers and others in danger.
Marijuana use may trigger panic attacks, paranoia, and even psychoses.
Marijuana can impair concentration and the ability to retain information during a teen's peak learning years.
Recent research indicates a correlation between frequent marijuana use and aggressive or violent behavior.
Dr. Jones concludes: MARIJUANA IS ADDICTIVE, and says that more teens are in treatment with a primary diagnosis of marijuana dependence than for all other illicit drugs combined.
Personally, I recall one visitation to a rehabilitation center where we interviewed recovering heroin addicts. We had to interview 25 hard-core drug users before we found a single one who had not started with marijuana!
As for those who say they must rely on marijuana to treat their pain, Dr. Jones cited a Washington University School of Medicine study on the subject: the experiment on twenty young men who were experienced marijuana smokers. Before and after they smoked reefers, electric impulses of different strengths were applied to their fingers and pain thresholds recorded. It was a method that earlier had verified the pain-killing effects of morphine, aspirin and codeine. MARIJUANA NOT ONLY FAILED TO LESSEN PAIN, IT ACTUALLY INCREASED IT! That finding casts doubt on the usefulness of marijuana as an analgesic.
The same facts and conclusions are repeated generation after generation with the same conclusion: DON'T EVER LEGALIZE POT!
Note to moderator:
Sorry for the double post. I did not see that the first one had effectively been posted.
The arguments are ludicrous. The whole debate is whether pot should be taxed. If it won't be taxed it will be prohibited, which seems a strange thing to do with a weed that grows everywhere. Pot smoking screws up the mind and makes a nation easy pickings, but that is another issue.
Gee, sounds like alcohol. Let's reinstate prohibition.
I agree that pot should be illegal, but my objection to the SC case is that this is a matter reserved for the states. The federal law went beyond a reasonable interpretation of the commerce clause.
Heck, under such a broad commerce clause, the 10th Amendment has no meaning.
All of his points should be irrelevant. Current law dealing with the substance is the result of a much larger & intrusive federal power grab. It took a Constitutional amendment to give the federal government power over alcohol use. What puts all other ingestable things under the thumb of federal power?
"MARIJUANA NOT ONLY FAILED TO LESSEN PAIN, IT ACTUALLY INCREASED IT!"
this must be why all these chronic pain sufferers swear by the stuff ?
Maybe they are all masochists !?
Anyway , we should all know by now to take the word of 'Studies' over direct experience . What good are our God given senses anyway?
I question regulating it for adults, even at the state level. Our governments should not think they have the power to act like our nannies. Educate, rather than legislate!
Clue ~ the guys banning MJ already have the power ~ all of it! Their purpose is to ban MJ.
Ohh what a load of crap.
MJ is - by orders of magnitude - much less dangerous then alcohol. Use any metric you like... damage to health, loss of productivity, crime and antisocial behavior, addiction rates etc. etc.
The only reason I would like MJ to stay illegal, is because if it was sold by state sanctioned stores, it most prolly would be seedy, stemmy brown mexican shit.
Two questions I'd like someone more knowledgable than I to address:
Has Marijuana ever been medically proven, by studies in accordance with accepted scientifc method, to alleviate symptoms from the various diseases claimed?
If, in fact, the active ingredient in Marijuana (THC, i.e. Tetrahydracannabinol) has been, or can be, proven to be medically effective, is there any reason why the THC cannot be synthesized and administered pharmaceutically in the same fashion narcotics etc. are?
If the answers to these questions are indeed 'yes,' I'd assume the pharmaceutical companies would be salivating about developing a new, and it would seem very marketable (!), arrow for their quiver?
This whole medical MJ is just a scam by left-wing leftover hippies to legalize pot so they can smoke it. It has nothing to do with pain killing. There are many more effective pain killers than pot. Any pain killing properties that pot has, can be put into a pill. It would not have to be smoked. Right on George P for having the courage to speak the truth.
Ahhh... ya see, there you'd be wrong.
Given that THC is a natural occuring compound, it is not patentable.
Much better for the bottom line ($$$) for the pharmas to push strong, physically addictive manmade painkillers.
Yes, that's a quite plausible answer re the drug companies. But, what about the actual drug itself? Does it work?
Hitting the weed a bit too hard are we? :@)
The war on pot was initially justified by raising the fear that white girls would be seduced by black musicians using pot. The arguements have changed a bit since then, but not much.
OK -- using pot has potential bad consequences for some people.
That is an arguement for not USING pot, and arguement that should be presented to every young person.
That is NOT an arguement for CRIMINALIZATING pot.
Many of us hold two beliefs at the same time without contradiction:
1) Using Drugs, including Pot, is bad.
2) The War on Drugs is worse.
I am past 60, and I still haven't heard a good approach for discouraging vices (e.g., use of pot, tobacco, alcohol, prostitution, promiscuous gay sex, etc.) which do not create worse consequences than the vices being discouraged.
The war on pot has killed more people and destroyed more lives (e.g., due to mandatory minimum sentences for simple drug possession) than the pot would have if left alone and discouraged with education. It has resulted in the formation of a police state, and the loss of rights, the loss of restraints placed on the government by the Constitution. It has resulted in the waste of billions of dollars extracted from taxpayers at the point of a gun. It has resulted in the corruption of the justice system, from cops to prosecuters to judges to legislators.
It is time to look at ways of reducing harm, not exchanging the "use of drugs" harm for another which is much worse.
Gee, sounds like alcohol. Let's reinstate prohibition.
His opinion is based on 50 year old science? Wasn't the moon thought to be made of cheese back then?