“Can We Please Stop Pretending Marijuana is Harmless?”

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“Underscoring the incredible momentum to legalize marijuana is the misconception that the drug can’t hurt anybody,” Dr. Sushrut Jangi writes in the Boston Globe.  “It can, especially young people.”  He suggests that the biochemistry of marijuana effects “systems ordinarily involved in healthy behaviors like eating, learning and forming relationships” and “throws the finely tuned system off balance.”

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24 COMMENTS

  1. Can we stop pretending marijuana is harmful? Patrick Kennedy, whose grandfather made much of his fortune on alcoholic beverages, has an organization for criminalizing marijuana, and this has to be but one more reason to support decriminalization. This same Patrick Kennedy has been showing support for the Murphy Bill. Another reason to support decriminalization of marijuana use. Maybe these guys should shoot the sequel to Reefer Madness, Reefer Madness 2. I could imagine a few good slogans for the decriminalization people could come of this venture, how about Reefer Mad Pride? I understand they’ve got more potent weed in some cases today than in times past, but what did you expect. I’d say standing in the way of decriminalization, as in times past, is standing in the way of progress. Drug wars? Who needs ’em? They haven’t stopped shooting down Juarez way. All this violence comes, not of decriminalizatin, but of criminalization. We could end the marijuana prohibition, in other words, by decriminalizing it, and end a lot more harm.

  2. Well we pretend that alcohol products are solely beverages when in fact to many an addictive drug. There is very little mention to the possibility of Wernicke–Korsakoff syndrome (WKS), also called wet brain, Korsakoff’s psychosis, and alcoholic encephalopathy . Don’t drink and drive or drink responsibly not enough.Seizure sometimes fatal during detox or shortly afterwards is not uncommon . Cannabis has been made the “Boogie Man”.

  3. I just read that article. It ends with “Should MJ become widely available…”
    WHAT?
    That ship sailed years ago!
    It’s been widely available for DECADES!

    The article says that its harmful cognitive and psychological effects will take time to capture in studies.
    For half a century now, anyone who wants to smoke it has. There’s your study.

    If doctors like this, and the FDA, REALLY wanted to study the effects of MJ then WHY do they IGNORE the yearly International Cannabinoid Research Symposium that’s been going on for the past TWENTY FIVE YEARS?

    Doctors and researchers from around the world share 25 years worth of research and data but no one from the FDA is there. All the research is being done, and IGNORED by doctors and Federal agencies with an agenda.

    They NEED their drug war.
    How else can they justify paying the DEA $70,000,000 a day?
    SEVENTY MILLION DOLLARS A DAY. Think about it.

    Legalize it. Regulate it. Quality control it. Tax it.
    Keep the MONEY in the US economy and away from cartels and black market dealers.

  4. I’m soooo tired of hearing people say it’s not addictive!! I smoked weed from the time i was 14 until 22 or 23 years old. When I stopped smoking, I could not eat or sleep for at least 2 weeks. I t was horrible!! Irritability, mood swings, depression, anxiety. Yes, it most certainly is addictive!! Be real about it. Stoners know it’s addictive. Maybe some people can cope with the withdrawals better. Maybe that’s why we know some people have addictive personalities and others don’t. Use your brain people!! ( or whats left of it)

  5. Or it may have been that the smoke obscured or helped you to navigate through the anxiety, depression etc. and without it you panicked. “Addictive personalities” are often claimed to be the problem when in fact a little self-discipline would go a long way. Looking to any substance for the answer is ultimately self-defeating.

    • “The hardcore drug addicts that I treat, are, without exception, people who have had extraordinarily difficult lives. The commonality is childhood abuse. These people all enter life under extremely adverse circumstances. Not only did they not get what they need for healthy development; they actually got negative circumstances of neglect. I don’t have a single female patient in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver who wasn’t sexually abused, for example, as were many of the men, or abused, neglected and abandoned serially, over and over again. That’s what sets up the brain biology of addiction. In other words, the addiction is related both psychologically, in terms of emotional pain relief, and neurobiological development to early adversity.”

      ― Gabor Maté

  6. He’s right. But it’s not a black and white issue. I think the extremism on the part of the pro-cannabis is well deserved in that the laws against it are in fact hypocritical at best, but ultimately racist in origin and only preserved today for economical purposes. Cannabis does harm and even kill people. Everything kills people, to some extent.

      • I’ll give you some examples.
        Smoking ANYTHING is bad for your lungs.
        In places where MJ is legal it’s available in edible form, saving countless lungs from breathing smoke, which is never good for anyone’s lungs.

        SPICE is another example of something that actually does kill people. The ONLY reason for the market for synthetic MJ, aka SPICE, is the fact that MJ is illegal.

        Thanks to the Gov, we have damaged lungs and poison being smoked by people who can’t have MJ in their system due to probation or job drug screening.

        The ‘war on MJ’ served its purpose. It was an idea cooked up in the 1930’s to keep Mexicans on their side of the border.

        Like Jeff said, we have hypocrites like Chris Christie and Jeb Bush who actually want to keep the war on MJ going in spite of the fact that they both smoked it when they were younger.

        Do you vote? There are a couple names you can scratch off your list of presidential hopefuls.
        Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it. That prohibition thing worked out so well, didn’t it! (For Al Capone).

        • Jesse Ventura would be my guy, but he says he’ll only run if he’s on every ballot and can participate in the debates. Oh well.

          “Spice” is not synthetic marijuana, it’s just some crap sprayed on leaves from what I understand.

          And you do have a point with the smoking thing but I’ve yet to see it convincingly linked to lung cancer. A few tokes diminishes lung capacity slightly for a matter of minutes I think I’ve been told, so there’s a risk-benefit ratio there to consider. Since it also raises the pulse for a little while the super-hybrids theoretically could pose a concern for people with weak hearts, but I’ve never heard of this happening to an actual person.

          • Marijuana has never killed anybody.
            It’s proved more helpful than harmful.

            The WAR on Marijuana, waged by maniacs with an agenda, has ruined countless lives and cost our country a kings ransom already.

            Soon enough government greed will kick in and it will be legalized nationwide and taxed. It’s just a matter of time.

            Meanwhile I put what I want in my own body, regardless what some deuce bag hypocrite politician thinks. And THAT, my friend, is why the war on weed is unwinable.

          • Marihuana smoke has lower temperature than tobacco which is hypothesized to prevent it from causing lung cancer (many carcinogenic substances don’t form at lower temperatures). Also some studies suggest it’s components may have anti-cancer properties. All of that is not very conclusive thus far though.

  7. Dr. Sushrut Jangi, like most “experts” on the cannabis plant, remains ignorant of the fact that it is a unique food, unmatched for the amount of beneficial compounds it contains…in addition to it being an ideal source of Omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids, and an easily digested complete protein.

    http://youtu.be/AgukEtoQ1z0

    Comparing the dangers of cannabis to any of the highly toxic drugs of abuse (alcohol, tobacco, meth amphetamine, prescription pain killers etc) is beyond ludicrous.

    Dr Jangi, and most other “experts” on addiction are ignorant of the science of addiction.

    Addictive substances are a myth. The truth is that there are only people who abuse substances because they are avoiding the pain of severe trauma.

    http://youtu.be/66cYcSak6nE

    Can we stop pretending that the Boston Globe, or any “main stream media” company, have any interest in finding or publishing the truth?

  8. One of the worst things that happens to pot smokers is getting busted: Kidnapped by the government (arrested) and then robbed by “justice” system over a plant.

    I don’t even like pot but these “marijuana is bad” articles only give fuel to those anti Americans who think taking our liberty to make us “safe” is a good idea.

    Smoke pot fry your brain any way you want, in a free country each person is the guardian of his or her own health.

    ” Every seed is a bag of weed” LOL Pot is here to stay.

  9. Marijuana isn’t harmful. Marijuana isn’t a gateway drug. Just because you don’t understand marijuana doesn’t make it illegal or a criminal act. Jesus I’m so sick of everyone claiming it’s for the children. NO IT ISN’T! It’s activist who know nothing about Marijuana using children as PROXIES! ALCOHOL IS THE CRIME. ALCOHOL IS THE GATEWAY.