Skip to comments.Drugs chief: Alcohol more dangerous than ecstasy, LSD and cannabis
Posted on 10/29/2009 6:03:25 AM PDT by LibWhacker
The British Government's chief drug adviser has sparked controversy by claiming ecstasy, LSD and cannabis are less dangerous than cigarettes and alcohol.
Professor David Nutt, chairman of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, attacked the decision to make cannabis a class B drug.
He accused former home secretary Jacqui Smith, who reclassified the drug, of "distorting and devaluing" scientific research.
Prof Nutt said smoking cannabis created only a "relatively small risk" of psychotic illness. And he claimed advocates of moving ecstasy into class B from class A had "won the intellectual argument".
All drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, should be ranked by a "harm" index, he said, with alcohol coming fifth behind cocaine, heroin, barbiturates, and methadone.
Tobacco should rank ninth, ahead of cannabis, LSD and ecstasy.
Prof Nutt said: "No one is suggesting that drugs are not harmful. The critical question is one of scale and degree. We need a full and open discussion of the evidence and a mature debate about what the drug laws are for - and whether they are doing their job."
In a lecture and briefing paper for the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies at King's College, London, Prof Nutt attacked what he called the "artificial" separation of alcohol and tobacco from other, illegal, drugs.
He also repeated his claim that the risks of taking ecstasy are no worse than riding a horse.
A Home Office spokesman said: "Prof Nutt's views are his own and do not reflect the views of Government. The Government is clear - we are determined to crack down on all illegal substances and minimise their harm to health and society as a whole.
No you won't get that
Cue the drug warriors in 5..4..3..2..
>>>claiming ecstasy, LSD and cannabis are less dangerous than cigarettes and alcohol.
I don’t know about lsd and ecstasy but I’ve at least never heard of anybody smashing a bong on the bar and with the sharp edges carving up the face of the toker on the next stool.
Cigarettes seem a false comparison though. If you had equal daily consumption of marijuana as you do cigarettes I’d expect similar lung problems, not to mention a diabetes epidemic from the Oreo stampede.
I’ve never done ecstasy. But I’ve seen first hand how incredibly stupid and vulnerable to accidents and foul play people are when they are on it. You have to be nuts to say it’s not more dangerous than alcohol.
Did they adjust for the number of people using them? If half the British population has a drink or twelve after work, but only 2% smoke pot and 0.0001% take LSD, I would expect the "total danger" from alcohol to be worse.
“Professor David Nutt...”
I stopped reading after this.
HE’S A NUTT!
I’ll do a shot glass of scotch if he does a shot glass of LSD.
Why do I get the feeling that this guy’s list is going to place cannabis somewhere between Celestial Seasoning’s Morning Thunder and Maxwell House Instant?
The war against against non-addictive drugs is an “emperor has no clothes” scenario threatening the increasing power of government around the world. The emperor would rather live a lie than admit wrong.
The world would be a truly better place if more people could safely escape their self-centered realities for even a minute to experience life from a completely different outside perspective.
I guess it all depends on how you define danger, what kind of danger, what kind of harm, who gets harmed, and how much of the drug it takes to do the harm that we are talking about.
My preferred option. Anybody can do whatever drug they like, but if you hurt someone else, you go to jail based on what the sentence would be if you did it deliberately. Also, no government sponsored help, or rehab programs for the addicted.
The real question about drugs isn’t whether or not they are addictive, but what they do to your mental processes, and how much of it it takes to do it.
I agree But I no longer support the drug war that has become a war on the constitution.try driving across state lines with a bundle of cash, not to mention the gov corruption ect
legalize the majority of drugs and instead have very severe laws about operating under the influence and enforce them judicially
When abused, caffeine is far more dangerous and addictive than cannabis. Abuse is only rare because there more pleasurable drugs available.
My grandfather spent time in a Russian gulag and would tell of how the strongest drug available was black tea. Prisoners would cook incredibly strong extractions and eat them. He became addicted briefly and said the withdrawal made every bone in his body hurt with the worst pain he ever felt. Many were addicted and a few even had heart attacks.
The next best drug was boiling leather and inhaling the fumes...
There has never been a single case of overdose or paralyzing addiction with cannabis or any of its products. Even spilling tobacco extract on your skin WILL kill you.
Intoxication is human nature and should not be illegal unless an actual crime is committed in the process. The war on intoxication is as stupid as a war on sex.
He must know.
My best friend is a nurse at a rehab facility and EVERY SINGLE(not one exception in years) person hurt by a non-addictive drug was due to unknown dosing or adulteration.
I cannot begin to tell you the number of mathematicians, scientists and researchers that saw direction while gaining a new perspective under drugs. I was in research for a long time and it is more common than not. Especially among the most brilliant.
I know most will not believe me and I'm wasting my time. The only reason I am doing this is because a close friend of mine was a brilliant researcher and killed by the drug war. The drugs never hurt him or made him hurt anyone but the law killed him.
Well, as I said, I don’t care what someone does with their body, or even their mind, as long as they harm no one else.
If they do, then the hammer should come down hard.
Of course, drunk people are never incredibly stupid or vulnerable to accidents!
Not after their first sip. People on X, especially young girls seem to get this "isn't this special" feeling that makes them very vulnerable to manipulation; far more than alcohol does.
That’s not comparing apples to apples. I’m sure you can take an amount of ecstasy that would make you feel pretty much nothing, although from the user’s perspective there wouldn’t be much of a point to that. And I’ve seen girls on ecstasy and girls drunk, the degree between the two’s promiscuity is very small.