Please, really. Stabbing himself in a hand with a pencil?
Gee, the guy is a nervous wreck. Heh. I sure *do* hope
you're not basing your judgement of him just on that one
My personal view is that drugs may affect people in an ugly way, but it's in line with what may happen without drugs: people lose their sense of direction in life, lose ideals, lose ambition for whatever reason, may be unhappy because they fail to accomplish something they set out to accomplish, have mid-life crisis, have teen age crisis, and so on. One of the most vilest instincts man has is that urge to prohibit other people to do something 'for their best interest'. It's interesting that nobody is usually forthcoming to prohibit something for *themselves*.
But I digress.. My point is, people are blaming stuff on drugs. It's a bit like witch burning in 1600's.. Something's not working? Crops are bad? Livestock sick? Let's find an old bag living on outskirts of a village that doesn't go to church and burn her, see if that helps. Teenagers don't listen to parents? Listen to strange music? Wear strange clothes? Are disillusioned and angry? That's weed for you. What else could it possibly be?
One scientific study on this issue I read about examined a sample of people who smoked MJ for over 10 years in unusually large amounts - something like 5 joints every day, IIRC. IQ tests were done and results were different from non-users: but the difference was very subtle. The difference was not enough to be of any effect on a career or life of an average person. Perhaps, if he's a top scientist working on latest superstring theory, it would affect him negatively, *perhaps*. And keep in mind that vast majority of users does 2-3 joints in a *week* as opposed to ~5 a day.
As far as my experience goes, I tried a bit of DXM and quite a bit of MJ, and I found that nicotine, alcohol and even caffeine are far nastier drugs than MJ. Yes, caffeine is quite bad, addiction is possible (whereas MJ is non-addictive), and effects can be destructive. I think the reason it's usually looked at as much virtually harmless while MJ is thought dangerous because caffeine's short term affects on consciousness are not as strong, and not as complex. It's just a stimulant, which is similar to what people may experience if they jog for 10 minutes in the morning - OTOH, MJ's short terms effects include distortion in vision/hearing, feeling of euphoria, etc. People fear the unknown and mysterious. Nicotine is *very* addictive, in fact I've read accounts that claim it is more so than cocaine or heroin. Again, it's perceived as harmless because it's immediate effects are plain and simple, but in the long run you'll probably get cancer. DXM may be dangerous and it can be stronger than acid and yet it's
a legal drug and is sold as part of many OTC cough medicines. It may be dangerous in combination with some drugs (in particular, tylenol and many headache medicines that contain tylenol's main ingredient), so if you decide to try it, don't do it before reading the FAQ.
So this is my viewpoint on this.. I think we should legalize all drugs in 1-2 states, legalize just the MJ in another, and decriminalize it like in western europe in the rest of US. Then in 2-3 years we'll see how these states are doing, and if they're fine (as I suspect they'll be), we can do it all over the US. I think the author of the story is wrong in his approach: first of all, he says that lincoln or whoever was against prohibition, and it's obvious to anyone that he couldn't have meant coke or H.. this argument is so easy to shoot down it can only hurt the cause. Abstract arguments about freedom being more important than safety won't help either: conventional wisdom goes that poor misguided youth gets hooked up and can't quit afterwards (which is sometimes true), so they perceive it as kind of like saying that underage 10 year old girls should be free to choose to have sex with their parents/guardians if they want to - which is, IMHO, absolutely different and utrue. But that's what people think -
legalize and US will overnight turn into wasteland liek the one in Mad Max movies. They also think smoking weed burns out your brains, and so on.. The only way to get drugs legalized is scientific studies, social studies in europe (I think it's very interesting that only 5% teenagers smoke weed in Holland). Get them to understand that you try it and, if you don't like it, you quit any time you want.
By the way, if you're wondering.. I think I'm fairly intelligent, I was in math team at school, passed math AP in HS, worked as web designer, study computer languages now. I haven't done MJ in a long time, and had absolutely no problem with stopping to use it.
Rainy "Collect all zero" Day
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