I just teamed up with women’s lib writer Barbara Walker and Dr. Lester Grinspoon of Harvard Medical School to publish on Kindle Pot Stories and Atheist Essays.
One piece, “Pot Story,” offers a very persuasive polemic for legalization and at the same time shows some of the misery and suffering that unwise laws have caused over the decades. One section describes Harry Anslinger, the founder and first commissioner of the Prohibition Movement, as a conspicuous bigot and inarguable moron.
Ms. Walker, in her inimitable style, writes of the abuses of religion over the centuries and the mistreatment of women, mostly due to original sin.
Also included is a podcast of Dr. Grinspoon where he categorically states there is no physical damage to the body at all. He tells the story of how he first turned on, exhorted by none other than Carl Sagan on a cruise to a conference in Europe.
If you’re interested in marijuana, either medically or recreationally, this is a must read so you’ll know what you’re doing or talking about. Lot’s to discuss, n’est-ce pas?
I agree that we should hold this subject with the same level of "scientific scrutiny" as we would any other subject. There is just one problem with that (well thousands actually). Since Marijuana has been illegal scientists had to apply to the government to get permission to study it and the thousands of applications were denied. The handful of studies that were allowed, even with the government in no uncertain terms letting the researchers know what they wanted the results to say, all came back showing no ill effects. As more countries lax their laws, more and more evidence has been pouring in showing, not only is it not harmful, but it has many beneficial uses. Did you know your brain has receptors for CBD's, some of which your body produces but many that aren't produced anywhere else in nature other than marijuana? A lot of what we were told was lies, just like religion. The very name, was made up as a racial attempt to tie it to Mexican immigrants. The government propaganda was poured on thick and they used fear and peer pressure just like religion. I don't smoke it, but I don't believe that in an allegedly free country, my government can tell me that I don't have the "right" to. Remember when Bush Sr said he didn't like broccoli? Could you imagine him saying, "therefore I'm going to make broccoli illegal"? There are many good documentaries about it (and some bad ones) look them up online. I dont smoke it and used to be against it until I researched it myself.
There is no possible way that putting something in your mouth and lighting it on fire and I hailing the smoke is not bad for you. Ingesting marijuana is surely bad for you too.
What is your evidence for these beliefs?
and any contrary evidence I give you, you will just twist things around and tell me how wrong I am>>>
That’s what discussions of for: getting at the truth. I don’t tell you “how” wrong you are, merely that you might be wrong. Consider this one:
I know that marijuana is bad for you for all the same reasons tobacco is bad for you. >>>
That’s clearly not true. Nobody ever contracted lung cancer from smoking marijuana. If you smoke too much, OD that is, you merely pass out and wake up feeling fine. Try that with booze or hard drugs.
The argument that people should be capable of smoking only the `Best' marijuana and know to limit the use of it is pure hogwash....If that were true there would be no alcoholics...and cigarette smokers would not die of cancer. The truth is that any drug that can alter your mental state needs to be controlled because users can't be trusted to limit its use
What is your evidence for this belief?
There are many people who use marijuana only occasionally. I used marijuana about once every 2 weeks for 25 years.
Drugs vary in their addictiveness. Tobacco is extremely addictive. Alcohol is also addictive - yet there are many people who have a glass of wine with dinner, and never become alcoholics.
For any drug, there are people who use it in a pathological way - too often, and it interferes with their lives. Why should the people who use it occasionally suffer for those people?
And why should the people who use those drugs in a dysfunctional way, be further punished by being criminalized?
A huge part of the prison population is there because of drugs, directly or indirectly.
....A person who smokes marijuana frequently just because it is easily available and then drives a car or uses any machinery can cause much harm to others
There are laws against driving under the influence of drugs. Do you think those laws aren't enough, and if so, why?
We have laws against driving drunk. Do you think drinking alcohol should be illegal because people sometimes violate the laws against driving drunk?
A person who drinks too much alcohol ... could become violent and hurt those around him
We have laws against assaulting people, also. Do you think drinking alcohol should be illegal because people sometimes assault others while they're drunk?
<There is no possible way that putting something in your mouth and lighting it on fire and I hailing the smoke is not bad for you. Ingesting marijuana is surely bad for you too. >>>
I disagree. There are many experiments showing marijuana to be of curative and medicinal benefit—certain types of epilepsy, for instance. I haven’t studied the latest literature but I’m pretty sure there are many instances of mj being very beneficial. I can also see mj helping people in a hospice.
Marijuana sure helped friends of mine cope with the horrors of Viet Nam. Let me ask you Michael, if you were in Nam and your commanding officer told you to go into the a village (Ben Suc, for example) set the huts on fire and then shoot the hiding old people and children when they came running out with their clothes ablaze, would you prefer to follow the order straight?
Same with people in jail. Marijuana helps us cope.
So, you think that the way to deal with moral or philosophical problems or situations is to take marijuana?! In your Vietnam example, either you would follow orders or you would not, wither you would follow orders if doing otherwise would mean your commanding officers would kill you or you would disobey orders and blow your commanding officers brains out or somehow you would just make a decision. I am sure that if you talk to any philosopher about any of various similar situations no philosopher will say, uh, well, f-ck it, just plop yourself down and smoke some sh-t, that will really help you cope with the situation.
Mike, in the '60s with videos of the war bringing home the news of war dead on a nightly basis, my friends and I had a shibboleth, a pithy maxim, “how the hell do they expect us to take this society straight?”
My point is that grass helps people cope with life’s absurd realities.
For instance, (and I hope the prosecutor of some months ago continues to follow this thread and reads this post) you can go to jail for “contempt of court.” How can any sane and reasonable citizen NOT have contempt for a corrupt, insanely venal judicial system? With all the graft, greedy overly ambitious lawyers, favoritism, racism, kick-backs and innocent people going to jail where they’d likely be anally raped, how can a reasonable person not rail in horror? Think about it! A young person with an intolerably monotonous, boring job at a local McDonald’s goes home after working long overtime, and gets busted for smoking a joint. He goes to jail and gets raped. (Perhaps after DEA agents broke down the door to his apartment in the fashion of WWII Gestapo.)
Where in human history has sexual perversity ever been institutionalized since the training of Spartan homoioi (equals)?
At the time we were discussing it, there was a judge who was receiving kick-backs from a so-called “reform school” that was paying him “by the head” for every kid he sent their way. Hundreds of young lives were ruined so this judge could live in luxury. That’s what’s ludicrous, Freethinker. The trade-off is ludicrous: the judge makes a million dollars at the expense of hundreds of kids whose lives are traumatized forever.
Just yesterday, there was a case in NYC of an obese black man choked to death by six cops. He told them “I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe” and died before they could put him in a squad car. I doubt the burly cop whose strong arm was wrapped around his neck like a vice will ever stand before a judge on murder charges. And we’re not supposed to feel “contempt of court”. I said it many times on these pages, grass helps us break through the conditioning. Criminalizing grass is mind control.
I pretty much agree with your conclusion, but I make my living as an attorney and we do not need any more shit heaped on us, thanks.