Skip to comments.Cannabis as bad as heroin, warns UN drugs watchdog
Posted on 06/27/2006 9:09:47 AM PDT by Fractal Trader
THE drugs watchdog of the United Nations has rebuked the UK government's policy change on cannabis, saying it sent a confusing message to young people.
UN experts also warned that a major increase in the potency of cannabis means it now poses health risks similar to those of heroin.
The decision to reclassify cannabis as a Class C drug - made by the Home Secretary in 2004 - was implicitly criticised by Antonio Maria Costa, the executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, who warned of the growth in its use.
Cannabis had become more potent in the past few decades and governments that maintained inadequate policies got the "drug problem they deserve", Mr Costa said in the 2006 World Drug Report.
"Policy reversals leave young people confused as to just how dangerous cannabis is," he added. "
The cannabis pandemic, like other challenges to public health, requires consensus, a consistent commitment across the political spectrum and by society at large."
He warned governments against playing party politics with the classification of cannabis as its harmful effects were "no longer that different" to the damage caused by cocaine and heroin.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.scotsman.com ...
This just sounds like scare tactics to me.
I smoke pot like a chimney in High School and had no long term problems except for memory loss and some other...things...which I can't quite remember...
Selling coke to the overpaid UN staff has to be a real money machine.
Roll up a fat one and pass it around!
Hell, pot isn't even as dangerous as nicotine, and anyone who knows anything about it knows that. One more stake in the credibility of the UN.
The problem is they are making pot to be much more addictive and much more potent that it use to be.
Addictive??? You have some evidence?
um yeah i know what you mean man . . . stuff.
This thread wouldn't be complete without at least one canard!
"I smoke pot like a chimney in High School "
So did I and my memory is still perfect. In fact it is so good that I can't even remember the last I forgot something.
The only people who believe that are the ones who couldn't get good quality pot in high school or college.
Yes - the good stuff is now more available. But it was also available back "then" if you knew where to look.
Sorry, but could you point out what is not true. It is more potent and it is addictive. Just because it is not as addictive as some drugs like nicotine or cocaine, does not mean it is not addictive.
If you mean addictive like food and sex are addictive, i.e. "psychologically addictive", then sure. But so is anything fun.
But more potent? No. The good stuff was always around.
And much CHEAPER, too!
(Or so I've heard.)
Who can say that after billions and billions of dollars of spending there has been no progress in the "War on Drugs"?
What a joke. These idiots must think we're stupid.
Masturbation, Voting Democrat, and gambling do not rely on external chemistry, yet seem to form persistant habits.
The first two, of course, are syngergistic...
From what I can gather, the increased amount of trouble high-schoolers have in getting alcohol ensures there will always be young & willing consumers for the marijuana market.
First you disagree, then you basically agree. If the 'good stuff' is much more available, then pot has become more potetent to the average user. Growers are getting better and the 'good stuff' is more available. It is even likely that the 'good stuff' is even better today.
I've got some.
A childhood friend of mine came back from Vietnam smoking dope all day long. It's lasted to this day. He can't/won't quit. He doesn't drink because it interferes with his 'buzz'. He's lost his wife and kids and quite a few of his friends, including me, and now his oldest son is a little drug head himself and, of course, pop can't say anything to him.
In addition to that, my first wife was a pothead. Over the last 20 years she's been to doctors, rehab, etc. 45 years old and still smoking dope.
I'm sure that you will discount my evidence as 'random and rare, biased observations', but these two people are hooked and I don't give a damn what kind of evidence that you have to the contrary, it won't diminish their addition.
WTFROTFL who's "they"? The leprechauns?
See, all those illegal immigrants are benefitial.
Yeah the more potent stuff is more available but the chemical makeup of THC hasn't changed. THC is also not addictive, only psychologically, like chocolate or your favorite TV show. And more potent = less smoking. Nothing more, nothing less.
If the UN is agin it, I'm fer it.
Two of the strongest ties shared with libertarians: "Let's buy a crate of Chips Ahoy, two gallons of moo-juice, then shotgun sensimilla with a Remington Wingmaster."
(Slick didn't inhale. How dumb is that?)
I believe you. If your friend is addicted, he's addicted, but it's not chemical. Some people also break open a bucket of ice cream when they get depressed, but ice cream isn't chemically addictive either.
Libertarian ping.To be added or removed from my ping list freepmail me or post a message here
II. Myths and Misperceptions
Many of the things Americans know about marijuana are myths or misperceptions. People need to
know the truth about this harmful drug.
M Y T H 1
Marijuana is harmless.
Marijuana is far from harmless; in fact, recent scientific findings about the drug are startling.
Most of the drug treatment for young people in the United States is for marijuana alone. Marijuana
emergency-room mentions have skyrocketed over the past decade, and the drug is associated with an
increased risk of developing schizophrenia, even when personality traits and pre-existing conditions
are taken into account.
Marijuana smoke contains 50 percent to 70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons
than does tobacco smoke.10 Using marijuana may promote cancer of the respiratory
tract and disrupt the immune system.11
Marijuana smokers have a heightened risk of lung infection.12
Long-term use of marijuana may increase the risk of chronic cough, bronchitis,
and emphysema, as well as cancer of the head, neck, and lungs.13
Mentions of marijuana use in emergency room visits have
risen 176 percent since 1994, surpassing those of heroin.14
In 2001, marijuana was a contributing factor in more than
110,000 emergency department visits in the United States.15
Marijuana can cause the heart rate, normally 70 to 80 beats
per minute, to increase by 20 to 50 beats per minute or, in
some cases, even to double.17
In a 2003 study, researchers in England found that smoking
marijuana for even less than six years causes a marked
deterioriation in lung function. The study suggests that
marijuana use may rob the body of antioxidants that protect
cells against damage that can lead to heart disease and cancer.18
Marijuana affects alertness, concentration, perception, coordination, and reaction time
skills that are necessary for safe driving. A roadside study of reckless drivers in Tennessee
found that 33 percent of all subjects who were not under the influence of alcohol and who
were tested for drugs at the scene of their arrest tested positive for marijuana.20 In a 2003
Canadian study, one in five students admitted to driving within an hour of using marijuana.21
Marijuana users have more suicidal thoughts and are four
times more likely to report symptoms of depression than
people who never used the drug.22
TheBritish Medical Journal recently reported: Cannabis
use is associated with an increased risk of developing
schizophrenia, consistent with a causal relation. This
association is not explained by use of other psychoactive
drugs or personality traits relating to social integration.23
Heavy marijuana use impairs the ability of young people to concentrate and retain
information during their peak learning years. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main
active chemical in marijuana, changes the way sensory information gets into and is
processed by the part of the brain that is crucial for learning and memory.24
Animal studies indicate that marijuana use may interfere with brain function and create
problems with the perception of time, possibly making the user less adept at tasks that
require sustained attention.25
Marijuana use has been associated with poor performance in school. One report
showed that youths with an average grade of D or below were more than four times as
likely to have used marijuana in the past year as youths with an average grade of A.26
Marijuana users in their later teen years are more likely to have an increased risk of
delinquency and more friends who exhibit deviant behavior. They also tend to have
more sexual partners and are more likely to engage in unsafe sex.27
Use of marijuana and other illicit drugs comes at significant expense to society in terms
of lost employee productivity, public health care costs, and accidents.28
Americans spent $10.6 billion on marijuana purchases in 1999.29
M Y T H 2
Marijuana is not addictive.
Marijuana has been proven to be a psychologically addictive drug. Scientists at the National Institute
on Drug Abuse have demonstrated that laboratory animals will self-administer THC in doses equivalent
to those used by humans who smoke marijuana.30
Marijuana is much more powerful today than it was 30 years ago, and so are its mindaltering
effects. Average THC levels rose from less than 1 percent in the mid-1970s to
more than 6 percent in 2002. Sinsemilla potency increased in the past two decades
from 6 percent to more than 13 percent, with some samples containing THC levels of
up to 33 percent.31
Subjects in an experiment on marijuana withdrawal
experienced symptoms such as restlessness, loss of
appetite, trouble with sleeping, weight loss, and shaky
According to one study, marijuana use by teenagers
with prior serious antisocial problems can quickly lead
to dependence on the drug. The study also found that,
for troubled teenagers using tobacco, alcohol, and
marijuana, progression from their first use of marijuana
to regular use was about as rapid as their progression
to regular tobacco use, and more rapid than the
progression to regular use of alcohol.33
M Y T H 3
Youth experimentation with marijuana is inevitable.
Drug use can be prevented. The majority of young people do not use drugs, and there are proven
ways to keep kids from starting. Contrary to popular belief, marijuana use is not a rite of passage.
It is a risky behavior with serious consequences. Every American has a role to play in the effort to
reduce marijuana useat home and on the job, in schools, places of worship, and civic or social
organizations. Working together, we can reaffirm healthy attitudes about marijuana use.
Surveys show that parents are the biggest influence in
their childrens decisions about drug use.34 Parents must
actively engage in educating their children and help them
make healthy decisions.
We know that when we push back against the drug problem,
it recedes. Marijuana use has been dramatically lower
in the pasteven in the last decadeand it can be
M Y T H 4
Marijuana is not associated with violence, as are drugs like
cocaine and heroin. The criminalization of marijuana is what leads
to crime, not the drug itself.
Its not simply the trafficking of drugs that causes crime at home and abroad. Crime also results
from the behavior of people who have drug dependencies.
Research shows a link between frequent marijuana use and increased violent
Young people who use marijuana weekly are nearly four times more likely than
nonusers to engage in violence.37
More than 41 percent of male arrestees in sampled U.S. cities tested positive for
The average user having more access to better marijuana than they were used to doesn't mean the marijuana is getting better. It simply means they have more access.
"They" aren't "making" pot more addictive because it isn't physically addictive to begin with. Psychologically? For a very small minority, yes. Just as are certain types of food, gambling, and numerous other things. If your friend and your first wife hadn't gotten "hooked" on pot, they probably would have found alcohol or something else.
Also do you notice that even your pasted propaganda admits there is no chemical addiction, only psychological (as bad as chocolate ice cream!)
M Y T H 2 Marijuana is not addictive. Marijuana has been proven to be a psychologically addictive drug.
What does it matter.
Let's say that I could prove that a gun is designed to kill but a knife is designed to spread butter. But if someone kills you with a butter knife, you're just as dead as if you were shot with a gun.
Besides that, how do you know that it's not chemical? Isn't it possible that some people could become chemically addicted to THC?
But it really doesn't matter to me because I think that people that take drugs are idiots. If you're never done it, you should try to ride with a cop on a Saturday night. Just about all their calls are drug related.
There's absolutely no physical addicitive component to pot (unlike nicotene or alcohol).
And this came from where?
BTW, I know that some of this is certainly true. I'm not arguing that pot is harmless.
...which has been going on for decades.
It matters because you're placing the blame on the drug rather than on the mental shortcomings of the person that makes them prone to addiction to (fill in the blank). Any substance could have provided the escape from reality that they apparently needed. Some drugs do have massive chemical addictiveness. Caffeine, heroine, cocaine, meth. Weed ain't one of 'em.
Besides that, how do you know that it's not chemical? Isn't it possible that some people could become chemically addicted to THC?
Not according to the scientific research.
Let me guess, we can also go to the bar where the cops hang out and hear all the bad things about druggies while they're pounding a few ones down.
The UN is pulling this line of BS right out of our Drug Czar's mouth.
"WTFROTFL who's "they"? The leprechauns?"
LMAO! Thanks for the laugh!!
I think we're splitting hairs. I agree that there is a potency ceiling that has probably been reached from some wild plant growing in Thailand for thousands of years, but massive cross breeding has brought the average potency level up during the last 50 or so.
For some reason, your post just struck a chord. It sounds like you have a many things to be proud. I hope my life is as fulfilling as yours.....Colin