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Intro: "At least some able-bodied Americans may soon be able to score a bag of weed legally without having to fake a knee injury. In November, voters in three states could approve ballot measures to legalize marijuana, and not just for medical purposes - for getting-high purposes."

A marijuana bud for medical use displayed in a California dispensary, 10/20/09. (photo: Genaro Molina/LA Times)
A marijuana bud for medical use displayed in a California dispensary, 10/20/09. (photo: Genaro Molina/LA Times)

Pot Legalization Is Coming

By Julian Brookes, Rolling Stone

27 July 12


t least some able-bodied Americans may soon be able to score a bag of weed legally without having to fake a knee injury. In November, voters in three states could approve ballot measures to legalize marijuana, and not just for medical purposes – for getting-high purposes. Then again, they might chicken out, like California voters did in 2010. But sooner or later, and probably sooner, a state will go green.

About half of America will be fine with that. Support for legalization is (no other way to put it) higher than ever, and rising. That's partly demographics – the young are more into pot than their elders, who aren't sticking around. But it's something else, too: The status quo, people are starting to notice, is a total disaster.

The prohibition on marijuana – a relatively benign drug when used responsibly by adults, and a teddy bear compared to alcohol and tobacco – has done an impressive job of racking up racially-biased arrests; throwing people in jail; burning up police time and money; propping up a $30 billion illegal market; and enriching psychotic Mexican drug lords.

But it hasn't stopped Americans from smoking a ton of weed. We're up to 20-30 million users, 6 billion joints a year – and rising. And teenagers, who ideally shouldn't be toking up on a regular basis, say pot is easier to get than beer. "There's that Talmudic principle that a law that's not obeyed is a bad law," says Mark Kleiman, a drug policy expert at UCLA and co-author of the new book Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know. "And I think we're pretty much at that point."

So, let's try another approach, right? Legalization could come in many forms, but all would involve tradeoffs. And no doubt there are all sorts of ways to screw it up. But more power to the first state to give it a shot.

When that happens, expect one of two things – either: the federal government, in deference to democratic principles, will decline to enforce its ban on marijuana, creating space for the state to be a "laboratory of democracy," working out its new policy by trial and error, learning as it goes, creating a trove of hard-earned lessons to guide the states that (inevitably) will follow; or: the federal government will bide its time and then come down hard, busting growers and retailers, seizing land and property (or, just as effective, threatening to), going after banks that serve pot business, and doing whatever else it takes to shut down the state's legalization push.

True, the feds would be within their rights to crack down. A state can legalize all it wants, but – incredibly – happy-go-lucky marijuana will still be a Schedule I drug, right up there on the federal shit list with certified brain melters and organ fryers like Heroin, Ecstacy, and PCP. And, no, this isn't some quaint, disregarded artifact from olden times: A personal stash can get you a year in federal prison, a single plant up to five.

And don't be surprised if Washington does crack down. As a candidate, "Choom Gang" alumnus Barack Obama talked a good game about bringing some sanity and proportion to drug enforcement. But during his term, federal prosecutors (who, in another complication, have wide discretion to pursue their own agendas) have cracked down hard on medical pot providers in states like California where it’s legal. The administration says it's surgically targeting front operations supplying recreational use, but it sure doesn't look like that on the ground. "Obama has been a terrible disappointment," says Keith Stroup, founder of the drug law reform group NORML.

But maybe the federal government will do the right thing and lay off. "There's a strong argument for trying it at the state level and for the feds getting out of the way," says Kleiman. "That seems unlikely, but I'd love to be proven wrong." (If the president in January 2013 is zero-tolerance drug warrior Mitt Romney, run for the hills.)

We might not have long to wait to find out. Of the three states where legalization is up for a vote in November – Colorado, Washington, and Oregon – Colorado "is definitely the best shot so far," says Steve Fox of the Marijuana Policy Project, a national lobby group that's kicking in about $1 million to support the measure. Under Amendment 64, the state would treat pot like alcohol – licenses for producers and sellers, 21-plus age restriction for buyers, and tax revenue government. Should it pass – and one poll has support up by 61-27 – "We're hoping the federal government will not impose its will," says Fox, "and that there'll be an adult conversation about what Colorado has decided to do."

A lot depends on how things play out on the ground, which is hard to predict. A few things we can assume: the price of pot will plummet, since marijuana is incredibly inexpensive to produce if you don’t have to dodge the cops or schlep it up from Mexico. Consumption will surge, though by how much is hard to say (the consensus guesstimate predicts a doubling or tripling). Beyond that, nothing is clear.

Amendment 64 leaves a lot of the policy details to the state legislature, and one of its first tasks will be to figure out how big of a tax to slap on. It has to be large enough to generate revenue – Amendment 64 wisely stipulates that the first $40 million generated will go to public school construction! – but not so large that buyers prefer to take their chances on the (untaxed) black market. Another challenge: How do you do a better job than current policy of reducing teen use? Or combating abuse and dependency – a problem for only 2-3 percent of users, but not something you can ignore. And how do you prevent neighboring states, if not the entire country, from getting buried under mountains of cheap Colorado weed? If the state looks like becoming the nation's grow house, the feds will probably land hard.

Looking beyond this year, bear in mind that there’s more than one way to "legalize" pot. Colorado is going with the alcohol model, but there are other approaches, some more plausible than others. At one end of the spectrum there's full commercial legalization, where anyone can freely produce, distribute, market, sell, or buy pot, just like any other commodity (think: tomatoes) subject to certain regulations. Hard to see that flying politically. At the other end, there's "decriminalization," where you eliminate or reduce penalties for possession (say, to the level of a minor traffic violation), especially for first-time offenders, but retain the ban on production, distribution, and sale; fourteen states, including California and Massachusetts, have already gone this route, and some major politicians, like Mayor Rahm Emanuel in Chicago and Gov. Andrew Cuomo in New York, have lately come around to the idea. Other options include, on the production side, restricting the industry to nonprofits, or membership-based "clubs," or allowing profit-making but limiting or banning marketing and advertising.

There are tradeoffs: Legalize commercially, whether fully or on the alcohol model, and you add to the sum of freedom and pleasure in the world, wrestle an industry away from violent criminals, generate useful tax revenue, and spare a lot of people jail time and criminal records. But brace yourself for a huge upsurge in use and, possibly, a marketing blitz aimed at teens (see tobacco) and the "heavy" users who consume most of the product and therefore supply most of the profits (see alcohol); and say hello to a well-funded pot lobby bent on blocking regulations it doesn't like (see tobacco and alcohol). Decriminalize, and you save a lot of cop time and money and, again, human misery. But you’re leaving a lot of tax revenue on the table and, incoherently, nudging people to buy what's illegal to produce and sell.

Voters will have to weigh these and other factors and decide whether the (not-fully-knowable) benefits of legalization outstrip the (hard-to-anticipate) costs. No plausible scenario is all upside; but it's hard to see how we could make things worse. "We don't say there are no negative consequences to marijuana use, but there are much more effective ways of dealing with those," says Jill Harris of the Drug Policy Alliance, a group that advocates for more liberal drug laws. "It's just that the consequences of marijuana prohibition are just so much more severe that we feel it's worth the tradeoff."

Beau Kilmer, a researcher at RAND and co-author of Marijuana Legalization, says whatever a given state decides to do, lawmakers should make sure to give themselves an "escape clause," like a sunset provision that makes the laws go back to what they were after a certain number of years unless the voters or legislature decide to extend them. "There's no reason to believe they'll get it right on the first or even second try," he told me. But once the pot industry develops some lobbying muscle, the policy will be much harder to tweak. With an escape clause, he says, legislatures will be able to overcome the lobby "just by sitting still."

Of course, the federal government might decide not to tolerate legal marijuana under any circumstances, and all this will be moot. The only way to take the feds out of the mix is to change federal law, and only congress can do that.

But don't expect too much there. Last year, Reps. Barney Frank and Ron Paul introduced the first-ever federal legalization bill. It’s not going anywhere anytime soon; another Frank bill, the Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act, which would leave enforcement of medical pot to the states, has been kicking around the Hill since 1997, but has never made it to a vote. "Congress is several years behind the general public on this," says Rep. Jared Polis, a Colorado Democrat and a co-sponsor of both bills.  But even congress is starting to come around. When he first came to Washington, in 2009, there were only "a handful" of lawmakers prepared to stand up for more liberal drug laws, says Polis. Today, most Democrats are on board.

The GOP, not so much. "I've been very disappointed with my fellow Republicans on this issue," says Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of California, a co-author of the Frank-Paul bill and a rare pro-pot conservative. "I know that if this was a secret ballot, a majority of them would be voting on my side." Rohrabacher says a lot of his states-rights-and-small-government-minded colleagues agree that marijuana enforcement is a huge waste of tax dollars, but they're not willing to go there. "They’re are just terrified that in an election next time around there’ll be ads run against them about how they’re doing the bidding of the drug dealers."

So don’t look to Washington D.C. for action on this any time soon. Legalization, when it comes, will come at the state level. There's no guarantee it will happen this year, but there’ll be more initiatives on state ballots in 2014, and 2016, and beyond. Most pot activists and policy analysts I spoke to put the timeframe for legalization at 5-7 years, tops. "We’re guaranteed to win in the end because we’re winning the hearts and minds of the American public," says NORML’s Keith Stroup.

And then? "If we get state-level legalization and it doesn't turn into a total clusterfuck, we'll see more acceptance," Kleiman told me. In any event, he says, something's got to give. "Prohibition is falling apart, about the way alcohol prohibition fell apart. Legalization is eventually going to be a recognition of the facts on the ground." your social media marketing partner


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We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

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It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

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-123 # Barbara K 2012-07-27 11:06
So will drivers high on Pot be charged like drunk drivers? I don't relish the thought of lots of high people driving on the same roads and flying airplanes, and driving buses and school buses; and high doctors and nurses, teachers, etc., etc.
+82 # apollobartender 2012-07-27 11:23
#Barbara, you probably are already driving with lots of high people, which is one of the appealing things functionality that stays in tact. as to flying airplanes - big no no with FAA and other oversight authorities which also applies to school buses, doctors and other professionals who have to adhere to the professional conduct of their industry.
+114 # Guy 2012-07-27 11:32
As long as they didn't drink alcohol at the same time,they will probably be driving at 30 mph,so you might rear end them,so be careful.
All kidding aside,it is illegal or it should be , to drive a motor vehicle while intoxicated or under mind altering drugs.
After any accident where there are personal injuries,a blood test is needed in order to assess the condition of those persons that are deemed at fault.
At least this is the case in Canada.
As an occasional user,I can attest to the fact that alcohol is a much more dangerous substance than cannabis.
It is high time that people be told the truth about cannabis .Many are still under impression by the lies that were propagandized by government agencies supported by big business to stamp out the use of hemp.
We are all being treated like little children or should I say good sheeple.
+71 # BobboMax 2012-07-27 11:57
As far as driving high, not a good idea, but one of the classic styles of dopers is driving waaay slow. Alcoholics are known for overconfidence and aggressiveness- mean drunks are all too common- but I've never come across a mean doper.

As far as high-performanc e professional jobs, my experience is that people will be people- there's always a bell curve. A very high percentage of professionals will be very professional in their drug use- they're like that- that's how they got to be professional. They may use drugs, but they'll do it responsibly. And, there will always be screw-ups and they'll always find a way to screw up. Drugs make it easier to screw up, but they're just a tool- it's what's in the user's mind that's significant.

And,for the record, the by-products are useful- hemp fiber makes a nice cloth and hemp seeds have a very tasty nutty flavor, minimal psychoactive effect and about 30% protein.
+118 # wolflady52 2012-07-27 13:28
Drunk drivers run stop signs. Pot smokers wait for them to turn green.
+26 # dkonstruction 2012-07-27 13:41
Quoting wolflady52:
Drunk drivers run stop signs. Pot smokers wait for them to turn green.

and wait....and wait...what a pretty color....oops red again....
+13 # Texas Aggie 2012-07-27 17:26
That's not pot you're talking about. That's peyote, LSD, or one of their cojoiners.
+56 # Vardoz 2012-07-27 13:51
How many driving accodents do you hear about while stoned on pot? NONE
How many do you hear about while driving drunk? Tens of thousands.
How many people will die world wide this yr from smoking cigarettes- 400 million!

Putting people in prison for smoking pot because of the liquor and Pharma lobby is criminal and an assault on people who smoke this mild stuff. It's about time it was made legal. Cigarette companies don't tell you about all the cancer causing substances they put in cigarettes and neither do the liquor companies. All the baby boomers from the 60s went on to be the most porductive generation in our history and most of us are doing fine now!
+32 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 17:09
and most of us boomers are still "one toke over the line." Long live marijuana. If you oppose it, I blow a plume in your face.
+12 # Phlippinout 2012-07-28 00:41
Its an unfair test because THC stores in the fat cells and you can test positive weeks later unlike heroin, alcohol, cocaine and others that are out of the system quicker.
+19 # William Bjornson 2012-07-28 02:12
"All the baby boomers from the 60s went on to be the most porductive generation in our history and most of us are doing fine now!"

I agree with everything you say except this. Everyone in the boomer gen owes every young person they see a huge apology for the lump of shit we're handing off to them. We have given up more freedoms, allowed the psychopathic corporations to steal more of our money, and generally fucked up our country more than any previous generation. And we're still doing it. If we had had any balls, pot would have been legal in 1970. And bush is the perfect historical representative of our time here and our stewardship of America. Our grandfathers and great grandfathers would kick our asses for all we've allowed the elite to take back that they died on picket lines to win. Nixon, reagan, bush I, bush II. This is not the record of any kind of achievement but of abject failure. When the last of us croak, America will be better off. I pity what our replacements face. There will be blood. They are more enslaved than Americans have ever been. Did YOU grow up with a credit score that had the power to make you essentially a noncitizen? Did you have overpowering debt straight out of school? Did you have a proto-police state, complete lack of privacy, and no control whatsoever over your life? That's what these kids are facing thanks to us. Yeah. We've been really productive... Fuck the boomers. Bush is our epitaph and how history will remember us.
+12 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-28 09:48
William, I agree with you about the boomer generation. I am greatly distressed by the actions and subsequent results of our ascent to power. The idealism some of us held in the '60s seems to have been little but a flash in the pan. Far too many have succumbed to the lure of mammon and turned their backs to basic principles of decency and fair play. History will not look back kindly on what we have left in our wake.
0 # mdhome 2012-07-28 13:09
Nixon, Reagan and Bush I were not boomers.
+12 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 19:34
bush jr., rush limpo, sean hannity, bill o'really, manne coulter, ted nugent, sarah palin, michelle bachmann all ARE baby boomers.
+36 # Texas Aggie 2012-07-27 17:32
In parts of Europe they're using hemp fiber as the binding material in hempcrete. They mix lime, not concrete, with the hemp fiber and either make bricks out of it or spray it into forms like concrete.

Using lime means that there is an added green effect because the CO2 production is neutral while the manufacture of cement produces huge amounts of CO2 because of the chemical reaction forming Ca silicates out of CaCO3. Then there is the insulation advantage over concrete or brick cutting the production of CO2 for heating or cooling.

Granted, the lime is the key and practically any long, tough fiber could be used, but hemp is what they're going with and it seems to be working fine. Google hempcrete.
+58 # dkonstruction 2012-07-27 12:10
Quoting Barbara K:
So will drivers high on Pot be charged like drunk drivers? I don't relish the thought of lots of high people driving on the same roads and flying airplanes, and driving buses and school buses; and high doctors and nurses, teachers, etc., etc.

As George Carlin pointed out years ago, the main danger from driving high on pot is that you miss your exit....just kidding (lighten up people...or was that light up?). Of course driving under the influence of anything should not be permitted but no one who advocates legalization is saying that people should be able to drive, fly, operate, etc., while stoned....this is hardly a serious critique or criticism of the legalization movement
+11 # Old Man 2012-07-27 16:57
Quoting dkonstruction:
Quoting Barbara K:
So will drivers high on Pot be charged like drunk drivers? I don't relish the thought of lots of high people driving on the same roads and flying airplanes, and driving buses and school buses; and high doctors and nurses, teachers, etc., etc.

As George Carlin pointed out years ago, the main danger from driving high on pot is that you miss your exit....just kidding (lighten up people...or was that light up?). Of course driving under the influence of anything should not be permitted but no one who advocates legalization is saying that people should be able to drive, fly, operate, etc., while stoned....this is hardly a serious critique or criticism of the legalization movement

Come on, there are people driving under the influence all the time on all types of medicines. You pick-up at your RX and look at the warnings, do not operate or drive any equipment until you know what effects it has on you.Here in our lovely Arizona even if you have a lic. for MMJ and get pulled over and they find out you have a MMJ lic. you get to have a choice of MMJ or alcohol listed on your DUI. They assume you are high on pot so they give you a choice,...Pot stays in your system a long time and you will go to jail.Alcohol on the other hand doesn't some you only spend one night in jail and pay large sums of money on legal help and fines.That's on your record & you spend months blowing into a tub to start your car.
+19 # Working Class 2012-07-27 12:30
That is exactly right. People would be charged if driving under the influence. By the way, it is happening now. Some people smoke and drive, just like some people drink and drive. Not defending the practice, just stating the obvious. In fact, proponents of medical marijuana are concerned with the proposed state laws, even opposing the legalization in the State of Washington. The concern is that people who depend on pot for pain management might be more likely to be charged with driving under the influence.
-29 # giraffee2012 2012-07-27 12:39
guess I'm one of the few with you, Barbara. Here's why: Police don't have a good test for marijuana when they stop someone high on it - and a hair or urine test will show levels from prior usage so at the time of, say, an accident it will not be conclusive if the other person is high on pot. And the pot users KNOW THIS!

But as other responders have pointed out: Plenty of people already drive and pot.

So - my worry is for those kids whose parents can get high more often when it's legal. I have a pot smoking adult son and have had to rescue my g'daughter - Of course, he and his wife drink too and that is worse than when they are high on pot . . .

. . . so here's my thought to earn 100K RED points on this post:

Getting high while parenting should be illegal -- I know it would be impossible to enforce such a law:
+31 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 13:46
Most Pot heads make great parents and grandparents so I am figuring your kid does alot more than pot and drinking.

Remember Doctors are the biggest Drug Dealers with drugs that actually have serious side affects...Want to ask the Kennedy girl

Or maybe the legal crap that is finally getting busted in head shops and cigarette stores is the problem.

But I know teens not on drugs who drive like a holes....textin g or not.
+31 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-27 13:58
"...parents can get high more often when its legal." ????????

Do you think that alcohol prohibition reduced the frequency or level of consumption?

The issue of legality has little to do with whether or when a person chooses to to get high, regardless of the drug in question. The most frequent, serious and dangerous form of drug abuse by children is with legal prescription drugs found in the home, not to mention off-label usage promoted by drug manufacturers and prsribed by physicians.
+28 # Janeathena 2012-07-27 15:41
Getting drunk while parenting is worse. Even being a hungover parent is crappy.
+16 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 17:11
So what's your point then. Is there any evidence that pothead parents are any worse than other parents, parents who chew gum, parents who eat fastfood, parents who are Mormons (yes I KNOW they're the worst of all) and in some instances, same sex parents. You and Barbara are relics from the past. Get out of the new world if you can't lend a hand.
+10 # Gordon K 2012-07-27 19:23
There's no need for a specific marijuana test. The real issue is impairment, and there are established neurological tests that police can use to determine if a driver is impaired. If impairment is established, a blood test or urinalysis would reveal the specifics.
+16 # Norma 2012-07-27 20:22
Getting high while parenting...Is a must! More friendly parents...laugh ing at everything the kids do! pefect
+1 # Barbara K 2012-07-28 07:40
giraffee2012: Hi, as one who never smoked, drank, or used illegal drugs, and not for religious reasons either; I was only concerned with the safety aspect. Hadn't decided until now how I would vote on it. I have no problem with medical marijuana, and didn't state any objection to marijuana in the first place. Just concerned about the safety of it. Yes, I thought of the aspect of even more high people if it is legal too.
+48 # carpepax 2012-07-27 13:07
No. Cannabis does not affect activities like driving the way alcohol does. To think or suggest it does means you have no knowledge of pot and are speaking from opinion or indoctrination. Stop it
+21 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 13:41
Most people are using worse drugs daily esp drinking.

I believe learning about pot, facts/falacies would help you. NORML would be good place to start.

I believe every State should allow Medical and get it over with. People can die for America but cannot die in peace in America.

No one driving anything for money will be allowed to be high. But then they already are. Most are Meth users ... back to reality
+14 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 17:07
It will be treated like alcohol. Legal to consume but illegal to drive impaired. I'm 66 now and have had no trouble getting weed since age 16, so there are lots of users regardless of the legality.
+8 # soularddave 2012-07-27 20:27
Private employers, like mine, are free to impose requirements for hiring and continued employment. I'm randomly tested by both employer and my Union. I assert that it's a safety, efficiency, and legal issue, especially for those of us who are among those who are responsible for the safety of 20,000 guests at a time. Now, during concerts, for instance, many of the guests are toking it up (not tobacco), and we ignore it.
+6 # Doubter 2012-07-27 22:37
Barbara, I don't think anybody is waiting for the pot dispensary to open before obtaining their pot. This includes doctors, nurses, airplane flyers and yes, teachers.
+16 # jontomas 2012-07-28 01:37
Many people think marijuana consumption causes accidents like alcohol. It doesn't, for various reasons. Research has shown marijuana is not as intoxicating as alcohol. More importantly, while alcohol drinkers think they are better drivers and so drive faster and more aggressively, marijuana consumers are very aware of their altered consciousness and correctly judge when they are too impaired to drive - refraining from doing so. If they must, they correctly compensate for their altered state by driving slower and more cautiously.

The point is, judgement is not affected like it is with alcohol. Marijuana consumers simply don't put themselves or others in harm's way. This is why the PREPONDERANCE of studies show marijuana is NOT a significant cause of auto accidents. 
Marijuana and Driving: A Review of the Scientific Evidence
+13 # kyzipster 2012-07-28 06:02
I'm more worried about drivers high on xanax and twinkies.
+5 # jontomas 2012-07-28 22:59
Many people think marijuana consumption causes accidents like alcohol. It doesn't, for various reasons. Research has shown marijuana is not as intoxicating as alcohol. More importantly, while alcohol drinkers think they are better drivers and so drive faster and more aggressively, marijuana consumers are very aware of their altered consciousness and correctly judge when they are too impaired to drive - refraining from doing so. If they must, they correctly compensate for their altered state by driving slower and more cautiously.

The point is, judgement is not affected like it is with alcohol. Marijuana consumers simply don't put themselves or others in harm's way. This is why the PREPONDERANCE of studies show marijuana is NOT a significant cause of auto accidents. 
Marijuana and Driving: A Review of the Scientific Evidence
+10 # TomDegan 2012-07-27 12:03
Have a marijuana:

Just don't bogart that joint, mah friend.

Tom Degan
-35 # Interested Observer 2012-07-27 12:21
No surprise. The ridiculously slack "medical" marijuana laws here amount to backdoor legalization when almost anyone can pay their money and get their permit without any credible confirmation of a medical condition. The local "clinic" has been hiring to keep up with the volume, sort of like mortgage brokers during the bubble. What a joke.
+45 # Nick Reynolds 2012-07-27 13:17
The real joke, and it's tragic, are the drug laws. America, the land of the free. Now that's a joke.
+5 # pazyluz 2012-07-27 14:45
Agreed. I have med mmj agree w/all arguments above as to superiority over alcohol & prescription drugs, BUT I have a real concern re the edibles. Smoking and pills do not appeal to animals or kiddies. But one brownie could be tragic - not medically as pot does not affect the central nervous system so that's why nobody overdoses or could if they tried. But the edibles are delicious and irresistible and when people get stoned they forget where they put things.
+12 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 17:15
I'll have to somke a joint to understand hour post. I assume you were high when you wrote it, or did you forget.
I make marijuana tea, and it's the best remedy ever for abdominal distress. Don't forget to steep it at least 25 minutes
+11 # Capn Canard 2012-07-28 08:02
MJ Tea? Thanks, I will try it sometime. BTW, I think the prohibition on MJ may be because it can be so easily and abundantly grown, sown, and the usefulness of a such a plant is a threat to the very foundation of our whole economic system. A system that is based on scarcity. I realize that may sound paranoid, but consider that something like MJ need not have any high THC content to be a very useful crop: textiles, plastics, nutrition and oil etc etc. The problem with abundance is that the more abundant a crop is the less potential an abundant crop has to make a high profit. And here is another quick example that shows that crops with scarcity are valued more than crops with higher production: High Fructose Corn Syrup... is a dumb idea. Because corn crops have a low sugar content, whereas fruit crops, sugar beets, sugar cane, sorghum, and others produce far more abundant sugar per acre.
To be continued...
+9 # Capn Canard 2012-07-28 08:03
continued... from previous post:

Why Corn Syrup? Clearly it is political payback to the lobbying efforts of big Agribusiness, and that is yet another reason why small farmers can't compete and end up being driven off their farms. This highlights why things that are easier to grow are bad for our economy. Now, MJ is a crop that anyone could grow even on a deck in an apartment. If legal, then the return of the investment of time/money would be very small to non-existant because abundance of MJ would mean that the profit would drop precipitously. Once again our economy is there to prop up scarcity rather than creating abundance. To summarize I think this slogan has been used before: "It's the economy stupid."
+9 # Texas Aggie 2012-07-27 17:37
Case in point. A couple brought their Cocker Spaniel to the vets because of incoordination and other nervous system signs. The older vet couldn't figure what was wrong, but when he left the exam room, his young associate asked the couple if the dog had been eating marihuana brownies. It turns out that it had. I assume that it recovered.
+13 # Majikman 2012-07-27 21:08
Many years ago, a friend and I were enjoying a quiet evening at home, my cat comfortably snoozing on the arm of the sofa. As the smoke wafted in her direction we watched her slide in slow motion off the sofa onto the floor. We, of course, were quite absorbed in the ability of cats to morph into snakes. From that time on whenever she got a whiff of MJ she came running to join us. Strange cat.
+12 # Majikman 2012-07-27 21:52
It was the chocolate in the brownies...very poisonous to dogs.
+13 # sameasiteverwas 2012-07-27 20:20
I have to say, one of my sickest nights ever was after cooking and consuming pot brownies, back in the bad old 70s -- two of us who ate got deathly ill, lasted for hours -- another person just slept it off. As an afterthought, probably just made them too strong-- and even so, the ABSOLUTELY sickest night ever was the first time I tried wine at age 16 -- maybe a blessing in disguise, as between that experience & witnessing my dad's growing alcoholism, I gave booze pretty much a pass my whole life. As far as I can tell, pot harms less, and helps more, than any prescription drug out there. Insane that it's a Schedule 1 drug.
+11 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 13:48
When all those pain pills do not work if you ever fight disease...come back and read this stupid statement.
Problem is Alcohol, legal drugs and these new Salts...all sold over the counter.

Awareness Knowledge is Freedom
+44 # Adoregon 2012-07-27 12:35
For law to be just and for justice to be, both must be impartial.

The Controlled Substances Act (which prohibits cannabis) is not impartial law. For instance, it does not apply its scheduling criteria to alcohol or tobacco. Both those drugs get a free pass. Why?

Now ask yourself, how can a drug/substance able to be lethal in one sitting (alcohol) be legal and ubiquitous, while a substance with no lethal dose (cannabis) is prohibited and its users persecuted and prosecuted? How indeed?

My challenge:

If any government official,electe d or appointed, or any law enforcement official thinks alcohol is a less dangerous substance than cannabis, let them meet me at a mutually agreed upon time and place. Let this meeting be televised. Every five minutes I will fill my lungs with the smoke of highly potent (at least 15%THC) organic sinsemilla cannabis flowers. Every five minutes the official who thinks alcohol is less dangerous than cannabis will drink a shot (one ounce) of distilled alcohol (at least 40% alcohol by volume). We will continue in this way for six hours.

I think this will put an end to the government nonsense about the dangers of cannabis.

The war against cannabis is over. The government just doesn't realize how badly they have lost and how many normal U.S. citizens despise its bogus gambits.
+6 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 13:51
Problem has always been Government making money on illegal way or another. They during the Gulf War and the latest Wars have allowed goat carts filled with Opiates to stream thru the streets, villages unharmed. this is not Dow Morphine or whoever, this is illegal Heroin sales.
We watched it, News Commentators talked about it and yet everyone didnot care. If the Media gives us stories and we push them to the back, then why give us any at all .... feed them bs, they will never know the difference.
+44 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-27 12:58
One of the main reasons cannabis is illegal has nothing to do with getting high. Its about industrial hemp and its superiority and ease of production compared to other sources of fiber, nylon being the main issue. DuPont had a lot to do with banning the cultivation of hemp.

Try googling 'DuPont and the banning of hemp cultivation'. Follow the money.
+13 # wolflady52 2012-07-27 13:30
"The Emperor Wears No Clothes." A great book with all the historical facts you allude to. It's the truth.
+12 # Martintfre 2012-07-27 13:13
WHAT ...

People have a right to their own life?

Lunacy I say! Lunacy.

Next thing ya know they will want the government to be accountable for what it does to us...
+3 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 13:53
People even here are no accountable for what they do. I see blame game daily.

Mirrors ... take a look in them. When your eyes realize they can see, try using them to actually read. Awareness, Facts not Fiction.
+52 # Joe Bob 2012-07-27 13:14
I haven't smoked in 30 some years, although I did quite regularly during my VietNam service and after. I realize that the pot has gotten stronger, and takes less to get you where you're going, but alcohol is still deadly, especially for those around you. I'm all for legalization of pot, to stop the drug cartels, and the waste of police time and the prison crowding. I say let's start putting the Banksters and wall street crooks in prison instead. Probably room for some politicians in there too.
+33 # teineitalia 2012-07-27 13:32
I agree with you, Feral Dogz. follow the money. The war on drugs has been an enormous waste of time and resources. As one friend rightly put it.. it's really been a war on people. mostly brown skinned people. you would think that we have better things to do than chase phantom problems.
+10 # hd70642 2012-07-27 13:32
1 more harmful substances like anti depressants actually cause real harm
2 Do you really think there would sudden stampede if they were legalized
3 Some people drive so poorly sober they are a bigger meance than somebody who is mildly drunk or high ie those who use cellphones or fall asleep behind the wheel or the chroniclly unskilled motorist and are neither elderly or teenagers!!!
+8 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-27 13:34
I found it interesting to read the AlterNet article that claims to debunk the "conspiracy theory" about criminalization of hemp and DuPont and the Hearst Corp., yet fails to address any of the points presented in numerous other articles on the subject. Once again, follow the money.
+28 # dkonstruction 2012-07-27 13:57
I remember seeing an interview with the guy who helped develop the dna testing equipment that is now used in the criminal justice system...the defense was going to call him as a witness in the OJ trial to show how the L.A. cops and labs screwed up the dna testing. only problem was the guy admitted to using LSD a couple of times a year. at one point during the interview the reporter asked him if it was true that he admitted using LSD to which he replied that he did and said something like he found it cleared his head. the reporter seemed incredulous and said something like "but it's LSD; don't you find it affects you?" to which the guy responded "i won the nobel prize last year; how 'bout u?
+11 # KittatinyHawk 2012-07-27 14:01
I believe the right step is to prove thru Medical MJ the true usefulness of the drug.

The artful use of finding out the other abundance is jobs...clothes, beds, food, fiber, oil You can get hemp oil and use it in salads with no THC affects.

It could be used to fuel homes, talk about green energy.

But anyone suffering disease could take it in powder form, eat it, or smoke it. It does help people maintain pain after the Chemicals destroy our organs.

Black Market was actually by those stupid not to read black sales to us. But I always asked the falsehooders where in the name of anyone does someone on poverty level get the dinero to bring in mass quantities. Government, Government Immunities and Military...bigg est Drug Cartels in the World They do not want to give it up.

Wars in Middle East are not just oil but Opium Fields and who controls them...divide some to Pharms, some to Government, Military, and other gets distributed to streets so people kill each other. Only people making Profit on Drugs are the same people you dispise daily. Read Up, Grow Up and have some concern for those who could actually benefit from Medical Use and jobs. If it never gets legal for another decade for streets, good. But Medical should never have been questioned.
Die for Your Country but do not ask us to ease your death.
+16 # dkonstruction 2012-07-27 14:24
KittatinyHawk, the studies have been done, and done, and done but for the most part not here in the US because of the way it has been classified here so that scientists cannot even do the baic research. Whether it is the benefits to cancer and aides patients (both for nausea and increasing appetite) to glaucoma (spelling?)...t here has also been preliminary research (i believe in one of the scandinavian countries) showing it may even actually shrink some tumors. In this country, check out the work of Lester Grinspoon of the Harvard Medical school...Grinsp oon started out being very anti but has come around completely (though he still does not advocate recreational usage).

I must disagree, however, with your comment that: "If it never gets legal for another decade for streets, good." Not only should the state not have the power to regulate behavior by consenting adults that is not harming anyone else; the amount of money that is wasted criminalizing a "problem" which if it is a "problem" should be treated as a medical one and not a criminal justice one is staggering not to mention the thousands (if not millions) in jail right now for the non-violent offense of possession (not even dealing) is d given the clinton drug laws this will now follow them for public housing, no public assistance, no food stamps, possibly no voting...and we're talking forever. I cannot understand how anyone can justify keeping pot illegal for recreational usage.
+9 # Doubter 2012-07-27 22:23
And I don't want ANY holier than thou moralist or government nanny ordering what we can do or not do; Period. Their job, apart from ravaging the planet, is, or should be to look out for bank fraud and violent criminals.
As long as we as citizens aren't bothering or harming anyone - just LEAVE US ALONE.
I don't mean just pot, (it hasn't hurt me in about 70 of my 86 years - alcohol makes me sick) Just keep on re-electing yourselves and leave us alone.
Experiences are what life is made of, and altered states of consciousness are a valuable experience for anyone - unless you are borderline psychotic, but then you live in one. We all need a little mental shaking up and some variety in our outlook and attitudes. Unless you subscribe to the Carrie A. Nation mentality.
+8 # djnova50 2012-07-27 14:10
Sometimes, reading the comments to a story can be more entertaining than the actual story. The fact is that if a person lives in housing which gets some funding through the federal government, not even medical marijuana is legal. So, if the voters approve the marijuana initiative, it won't mean anything as long as the federal government says it's illegal.
+16 # the walrus 2012-07-27 15:05
Barb, do you feel safer on the road with people eating Burger Boys, sucking down coffee, talking and texting on cellphones, and arguing with their children? Gimme a laid-back pot smoker behind the wheel ANYday! lol......
+8 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 17:18
Here here, walrus, I'll toke to that. Smokeheads are the best drivers on the road today.
+15 # the walrus 2012-07-27 15:07
Close-minded, mindless, and old-fashioned people with trapdoor mindswill NEVER be in favor of legalization. They will just sit and shake their heads in dismay as they drink their scotch, smoke their cigarettes, and eat their high-fat burgers.
+12 # aj616 2012-07-27 15:07
Other European countries have laws against marketing to children, so if anyone is worried about marijuana being marketed to minors then the solution is to have laws against marketing it to minors. There's also a lot of other unhealthy things already marketed to children, like fast food and junk food, which do more damage than marijuana but no one has a problem with that.
+18 # jayjay 2012-07-27 16:51
By their definition of how they want to be governed, every single last Tea Partyite should be screaming his head off for Uncle Sam to keep his damn hands off regulating a simple herb. But the silence is deafening. What a bunch of sorry hypocrits.
+9 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-28 10:09
Quoting jayjay:
By their definition of how they want to be governed, every single last Tea Partyite should be screaming his head off for Uncle Sam to keep his damn hands off regulating a simple herb. But the silence is deafening. What a bunch of sorry hypocrits.

The TP is so high on money, guns and Jesus that they are incapable of rational thought.
+13 # reiverpacific 2012-07-27 18:03
There are some quite witty comments here -always enjoy a chuckle at the heavy hand of authority whatever form it takes at a given time.
HOWEVER, seriously though folks, I'd like to see Hemp in all it's amazing manifestations becoming a common industry on many fronts. It's almost a miracle crop and could help along the problems non-renewables are causing the planet -especially if it could be kept out of the greedy clutches of the monopolists and their lawyer-lobbyist patsies.
Regulation of quality might be a concern but at worst, Pot is safer than the purest tobacco and a damn sight healthier than all the heavily-pushed anti-depression and sexual "enhancement" pills polluting the cyber-spam and commercial airwaves (and much loved by the likes of these big-gobber bawler-bully hypocrites like Mush Limpballs).
Also ref' "They’re are just terrified that in an election next time around there’ll be ads run against them about how they’re doing the bidding of the drug dealers." . Hell "they" (the antediluvian congress-critte rs) are already doing the bidding of the drug dealers -including the FBI/CIA traffickers- in upholding the bans!
I remember in Kentucky when a dry county went to the voters to go wet, it was always the preachers and bootleggers who campaigned and voted against legalization of booze -and they were often one and the same!
Quod erat demonstratum.
+9 # sol4u2 2012-07-27 18:04
Hemp makes fabrics, rope, the seed is edible and more... Marijuana has the THC which is why it is smoked. Same species different plants. Hemp is imported from china and For over 162 years marijuana & hemp were legal...1936 the liquor coelition made a movie Reefer Madness and at about the same time hemp became a threat to the timber industry and new synthetic fibers and plastic industries and thus when $$$ talks laws get made and hemp and marijuana became illegal. The Federal Gov. should go after the truly life destoying drugs heroin, cocaine, meth, oxycontain etc and wow the Afghanistan popply trade... whoops kind of think we might be protecting that one. I am a firm supporter of medical marijuana and feel that this should be federally legalized now after my husband had cancer and if not for marijuana he would have suffered terribly and doped up to boot from morphine etc. but instead he was able to be lucid and pain free smoking marijuana. The public needs to wake up and see that it classification should be changed and it is not what it is advertised to be... In ending... Just saw documentary on The Billionaire Hippie a user of LSD in his early years and marijuana open minded creative, saw the big picture, if hot for him we would have a lot of disappointed kids walking around without earphones and iPods.... gosh... wonder who that was....
+6 # Brian Moritz 2012-07-27 18:25
In every country where marijuana has been legalized or de-criminalized usage has gone way down, sometimes by half. Clearly if these initiatives pass, which is likely,there will be far fewer people driving impaired.
Alcohol prohibition ended when prosecutors could no longer get convictions. Pot prohibition is ending the same way. It is getting very hard for prosecutors to get a conviction for a marijuana charge.
If you are on a jury and someone is charged with violating a law that you think is a stupid law, hang that fuckin' jury. www.
+3 # Billy Bob 2012-07-27 18:53
I guess I'll join the thumbs down crowd for this:


Honestly, I don't need it. I DO need clean air, water and a reliable food supply. I DO need decent schools for my kids. I DO need to feel I can express my opinions freely in the United States of America without fear of being tortured for it. I DO need basic infrastructure and my Social Security to continue to exist. I DO need to live in a country not too busy destroying the rest of the world to actually take care of its own citizens.

ALL of those things are currently under threat. I don't see that threat improving just because some people might get away with smokin' some dope.

I always worry about the left being duped by this. It's not going to fix anything. It's nothing but a distraction.

Sorry to go against the grain.
-8 # ramblinjim 2012-07-27 20:05
Not at all, you're almost right on target except for your need to get stoned and then write these silly essays that only a dozen or so middle aged losers will read. I know, I'm here too
+1 # Majikman 2012-07-27 21:50
Do you think imprisonment for an indulgence that hurts noone, drains the resources of a community in supporting private prisons, destroys lives of those jailed is not worth caring about? Even medicinal use to ease pain?
Big pharma has tried for years to outlaw herbal supplements (a billion $$ industry), to make them available by prescription only. I would really dislike going to jail for growing chamomile for my tea.
I've not smoked a joint in many, many years but I support those who choose to do so.
I usually agree with you...not this time, Billy Bob, sorry to say.
+3 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 11:04
I agree with you and everyone else who replied to my comment. My point is that we need to wake up to poltical reality and learn to choose our battles. We can easily get caught up in something that, while it may be important to you, is pretty inconsequential when compared to some of the MAJOR challenges our country is facing.

We can't seem to convince anyone that torture is bad, that war for profit is bad, that global warming and messing with the Earth's food supply is bad. We can't even safely say we've won the argument to pay for public schools, roads, parks, bridges, or libraries.

WE CAN'T EVEN ARGUE FOR THE BILL OF RIGHTS that has been completely decimated in the last 10 years!

In light of all of that, getting the right to smoke weed seems like nothing more than a way of appeasing us so we'll shut up and do what we're told.

It also sounds suspiciously like a conservative trap to show people that, "SEE! WE TOLD YOU SO! The left is nothing but a bunch of pot smokers! If you want 'grown-ups' in public office, better vote for us".

I really believe the right-wing would like nothing more than to have pot legalization on most ballots as a way to get THEIR base to the polls.
+5 # Texan 4 Peace 2012-07-28 02:25
A "distraction" that contributes mightily to our country jailing more of its own citizens than any other in the world. But yeah, no biggie.
+2 # Barbara K 2012-07-28 07:52
BillyBob: I agree with you. I just never felt the need for any of it. I guess I was just lucky that I didn't need it. I had a brutal childhood, so I guess it is a surprise that I didn't feel the need for smoking, alcohol, or illegal drugs. Never been addicted to anything. I guess, now that I think of it, it is probably a miracle that I didn't. lol
+1 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-28 10:17
Quoting Barbara K:
BillyBob: I agree with you. I just never felt the need for any of it. I guess I was just lucky that I didn't need it. I had a brutal childhood, so I guess it is a surprise that I didn't feel the need for smoking, alcohol, or illegal drugs. Never been addicted to anything. I guess, now that I think of it, it is probably a miracle that I didn't. lol

For the record, there is no evidence to show that MJ is addictive.
+1 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 11:07
It's not physically addictive, but anything CAN be addictive - even exercise.
0 # Feral Dogz 2012-07-30 09:34
Most days, I find living to be addictive by that definition of the term. A word can have any meaning or no meaning when that sort of logic (or lack thereof) is applied. We might as well revert to communicating with grunts.
+3 # dkonstruction 2012-07-30 09:08
Billy Bob,

why should you and others who don't smoke pot care about this issue?

1) How about the $1 billion it is costing US taxpayers due to pot use being criminalized and dealt with throught the crimial justice system?

2) How about the issue of allowing the state, giving it the power, to regulate the behavior/action s of consenting adults to do something that is not harming anyone else?

3) How about the hundreds of thousands if not millions of lives that will be negatively impacted if not ruined because of felony drug convictions (the result of the clinton drug laws) such that they can never (as in forever) receive public assistance, food stamps, live in public housing (or visit their family that still does); and, for some losing the right to vote. And how, about the fact that they will now, forever, have to check that box on an employment application (have you ever been convicted of a felony).

So, even though you may not indulge, there are still many reasons to oppose the criminalization of marijuana (and i would argue other illegal drugs as well).
-2 # Billy Bob 2012-07-30 10:24
I have no problem with legalization, just so long as the drive to "legalize it" isn't a distraction from more important matters. Right now, I think it is. The reality is that people will only fight for a few issues at a time.

Look how much trouble it was to stand up to big tobacco. Now imagine all the collective strength it's going to take to stand up to the entire fossil fuel industry. The survival of the planet hangs in the balance and we haven't even begun to fight for it.

Look at how much damage has been done to the Bill of Rights since baby bush was elected. We haven't done anything at all to repeal the "patriot" act. Until we do, it's only going to get worse.

If you think being allowed to smoke pot is going to solve any of that, we disagree profoundly. I see as nothing more than a distraction and a way to passify the resistence. If I were a repuglican I'd go on record as being PRO-legalizatio n, so the left would be duped and I could have a free-reign to do whatever else I felt like.

Which other illegal drugs would you legalize?
0 # Doubter 2012-07-31 20:49
Good logic; it's just your idea of "being allowed" that I don't like.
Do you feel the need for a "father figure?"?
I don't but maybe that's because I was a grandma's boy.
It shouldn't be a matter of regulating non harmful adult behavior.
It shouldn't be a matter of "legalizing" but of not criminalizing in the first place.
Just get the all pervasive nanny state off my back!
+2 # Kasandra 2012-07-27 20:22
Let's face it, people are more addicted to the drama of conflict than they are to the joys of peace. So when MJ gets legalized, the "charge" will be gone, and everybody will have a clearer chance to CHOOSE, because there's no longer a lethal game to play. Legalizing dope is the best way to go, then humanity will not be so dopey.
+8 # sameasiteverwas 2012-07-27 20:32
My real worry is the lengths that people go to, to be able to stay
"legal" for work. A good friend of mine began using the synthetic pot sold over the counter at mini-marts, which made him twitchy and paranoid -- and has now moved on to bath salts. I am terrified that he is simply going to die. NEVER would have worried about him smokin' a couple of doobs after work -- but these days he's so weird and out-there that he's hardly the same person -- ingesting these horrible chemicals just to avoid being busted for an herb. Maybe this isn't as big a problem as the hundred other things that need our attention as a nation -- but with tens of thousands of individuals and families being affected by ridiculous prison terms for simple possession -- and the travesty of "3 strikes" -- and the prevalence of these toxic substitutes available over the counter -- really, isn't it time to take one tiny step toward sanity? NOT fighting against these laws is playing into the hands of the private prison systems that want those beds filled. Think of all the things that could be done for our country with the billions of dollars a year now utilized for "enforcement" if we stopped chasing phantoms and started rebuilding our infrastructure.
+2 # moh2o 2012-07-27 21:31
article state that "consumption will surge"...I wonder what you base that assertion on. Most of the studies that I have seen show that legalization does not create more user or consumption, look to Amsterdam etc.
+4 # dick 2012-07-27 22:04
Our INSANE culture is very unlikely to tolerate sanity in the form of de-criminalizat ion. Hypocrites would go NUTS. Sheep would bleat.
+6 # SOF 2012-07-27 23:58
-Pot should not have been criminalized. Yes, follow the $$$.
-Using for medical purposes becomes more and more needed. The products from big Pharma have too many side effects and counter-indicat ions. I don't need anxiety pills or heavy pain killers, I just want to be able to relax, not hurt, not worry so much, play with the kids, get creative, be in a better mood. That said:
-We need to insure that organic medical mj is available.
-If it is a profitable crop, the GMO industry will want to own it. with all the problems of pollen drift. In any case, it MUST be labelled GMO. I see different tiers: organic, natural, conventional, GMO, and home garden -most to least $$. When it is legal, people can make their own tea, brownies, etc.
-Young people should avoid strong stuff till their bodies are grown -including pot, alcohol, colas, and more stuff i know nothing about. My child understood the logic of this. And later the logic of protecting her academic studies and the scholarships she was going for. After her first college year, she told me that kids from very strict homes were the most likely to drink and smoke too much pot, and flunk out.
-Imagine, if it's legal we who had/have experience can speak up!
-And we need the revenue to replace taxes we used to pay when there were jobs.
+6 # hd70642 2012-07-28 07:10
A major problem with the war on drugs it is neither effective or fair . No government is or will ever be omnipresent so all law enforcement is selective and unfortunately it is the poor and minorities that are the esiest target for this enforcement and the war on weed is a very lucrative cash cow
Maybe if we had a fair and compotent justice system instead of squandering efforts in vain on weed they could have arresed the banksters that caused the economic collapse and perhaps Sandusky's victims could have veen reduced or maybe prevented! The weed wariors have their finacial allies help put them into office
+4 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 08:13
Sounds a lot like the "war on terra".
0 # BobboMax 2012-07-28 10:29
Check out this review of "The New Jim Crow" by Michelle Alexander- it illuminates the de facto racism of the war on drugs.
+1 # 2012-07-28 08:49
giraffee2012 2012-07-27 10:39 wrote:
Police don't have a good test for marijuana when they stop someone high on it...
When police are doing a field sobriety test on the road for suspected drunk drivers,one of the tests is to have you look up with your eyes while keeping your head in a stationary position.If your eyes start going all over the place while you're looking up that's called rapid eye movement (rem) and by this they know that you have smoked marijuana recently. I always tell a cop the truth when they ask me "Do you smoke marijuana?" It's best they know,especially if you're not out hurting anyone.Cops know that it is not the weed causing all of the problems,it is alcohol and other drugs causing them.I hope they legalize before i die.
+1 # Buddha 2012-07-28 09:00
Why would pot use "surge" when it is currently easier to get than alcohol? Again, even in states where it is illegal, it is still easy to get or grow for yourself. I'm guessing those that want to use are already doing so, this just takes the criminality out of the equation.
0 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 19:46
I'm a good example of someone who'd use it if it were legal and refuse to do it while it's still illegal. I don't need it, but I'd give it a try. I refuse to until then, because I don't see any need for the risk. Why become another leftie in jail for something so inconsequential . I have children to feed and keep safe. I can't do that from jail. I have opinions I want to be heard and taken seriously. I can't do that if I'm just another pot-head in jail.

It's a very affective way to undermine our own political movement. It would be an affective tool to keep us passive. The Bill of Rights and the environment are much more important to me than having the token right to get high and escape from the reality all around me.

I think Frank Zappa had similar opinions about this. When I was young I thought he was just being melodramatic about the more serious threats to our freedom. As I aged I see his point completely.
0 # Billy Bob 2012-07-28 20:32
After a little consideration, I think I've hit one of the main things that bothers me about the movement to "legalize it":


What a wonderful drug for the right-wing!!! They make it "legal" for the people to take, knowing full-well that most users are lefties. It makes those annoying lefties more passive, and they just sit back and enjoy the ride while all their other freedoms are snatched away. Eventually it will be REQUIRED.

You'll be able to take it on plains soon. Just don't take a baby bottle full of milk or you could be sent away for a very long time.

I don't want to be passive. It's not my style.

We already have "reality" TV, and the internet. Pot would complete the picture.
+1 # Barbara K 2012-07-29 06:30
Billy Bob: As I read the comments on here, I came to the same conclusion. I thought, no wonder Dems aren't out voting and trying to hold on to our country. Too many people have become passive.
+3 # wfalco 2012-07-28 10:00
A rational conversation on legalization is necessary. I smoked my share of marijuana as a teen in the mid to late 70's. Lost interest dramtically in college when paranoia set it.Although my friends and I would still smoke on occasion-usuall y when drunk. Not a good combo.
Certainly it is ridiculous to imprison anyone for intoxicating themself at home or for having possession of an intoxicating substance while not driving under its influence. On that topic I am on board with the legalization crowd.
On the other hand, I'm with Barbara K, to a degree. I'm not sure why her innocent concern about legalizing another intoxicant was met with so much negativity.
Well,actually I am aware of why Barbara was given the thumbs down.
Any pro-marijuana article or opinion is inundated with the pot-head crowd.
These are the same bunch I knew back in the 70's(they haven't grown up much)who have a vaguely strange arrogance with their pot head lingo and "know it all isms."
What about my 12 year old? Should I (if I so imbibed)smoke bongs in the living room with him watching? Should he join me? What about the young party animals who will get drunk and high? I recall those days decades ago-the pot honestly put me over the top into black out land.
Sure there are those that smoke a little, go to work every day, and are very professional.
I would still argue widespread usage and acceptance may not be all some think it is cracked up to be.
+1 # bobby t. 2012-07-28 13:00
Power is the ability to make people do things they don't want to do.
When my mother-in-law was dying of cancer, and had no appetite, I offered to go out and find some MJ even though I had no information on how to get it. She said it was illegal and would not use it. She suffered because of that one fact.
Yes, congress does help drug dealers when creating bans on certain drugs like MJ, and allowing bath salts and crap like that to be sold to kids and adults.
They know it. Banners should be made that tell that story to the public.
"Voting against legalization is voting to keep drug dealers and voting to put kids in jail." Nice ring to something like that. Needs an ad man or woman..
Lastly, I wonder how many cops use MJ to relax and drive on this stuff. They have high stress jobs and would go nuts without some aid. I know they drink for sure! Every cop show on t.v. shows them running to bars after work. Do they drink and drive? MJ, on the job? Probably. Lots of high speed chases that kill people. What fools we mortals be!
+2 # jederfr7 2012-07-30 11:28
The Us Army studied marijuana use for decades in central America and would not believe the results that it was not negative and so they kept on doing the research hoping to find negatives . Army guys who smoked did not cause trouble !!

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