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Legalize It!

Dedicated to the study of the benefits and consequences of the Cannabis plant. For serious discussion only. Illegal activities will NOT be tolerated.

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Comment by Clarence Dember on May 10, 2009 at 8:41am
I have done volunteer work (leading a man's group) in a primary alcohol detox in patient facility. When I tell you that Cannabis is not harming adults, it's not the same as some ex-law enforcement heavy coming out for legalization. Those folks made a living extolling the virtues of alcohol while incarcerating free individuals who's crime was invented by an act of political NOT MEDICAL prohibition.
I think if former and active law enforcement want to do something for legalization, they should petition the courts to strike DOWN these Cannabis prohibition statutes through their fraternal organizations like the Police Benevolent Association, the Police Athletic League and the Fraternal Order of Police. Also, the District Attorney's Office meaning acting District Attorneys should petition the courts en-mass to strike these poisonous statutes from our body of laws forever! Until that is accomplished their "retired renegade testimonials " amount to little more than a public relations campaign, a change of window dressing for what has been and continues to be a pernicious campaign of vicious misinformation against Marijuana users and the PLANT itself by THE Law Enforcement COMMUNITY in the United States.
Comment by James M. Martin on May 9, 2009 at 12:59pm
T Sean says: "Never the less, I am sick of MJ being lumped in with other more harmful drugs." Don't you mean you're sick of MJ being lumped in with harmful drugs"? The word "other" implies that MJ, too, i s "harmful." Personally, I don't see any of them as harmful per se. They're like pistols: they're only harmful if you use them improperly. And MJ is far less "harmful" (or less likely to harm) than alcohol, which is legal.
Comment by Richard Goscicki on May 9, 2009 at 11:09am
T Sean, At any rate, thanks for your support if it comes to a referendum. I'm just exasperated with people who have no idea what pot is about. It's not about tax income. It's about legalizing mj because it's the right thing to do. It's a euphoriant, unlike anything else in nature. There's no comparison with tobacco, booze, or even coke—totally different chemical categories, if you remember your organic chemistry.
Comment by T Sean Prescott on May 9, 2009 at 10:50am
Oh, I never said I NEVER "smoked". I don't "Smoke" anymore. Haven't since High School. Never the less, I am sick of MJ being lumped in with other more harmful drugs. Ther are so many benefits from legalizing MJ, it's a crime not to.
Comment by Richard Goscicki on May 9, 2009 at 10:35am
T Sean, You can't learn how to swim by reading a book. You have no idea what it's like. If you're not into grass, your input should be taken with that proviso.

I’m not a “churchie” (pardon me, I’m a bit of a neologist). Still, I acknowledge your right to receive Holy Communion even though you don’t even get high. That’s big of me, right?
Comment by T Sean Prescott on May 8, 2009 at 11:50pm
I wanted to say, I am not a "smoker" but feel that legalizing pot would help our economy, and overcrowding prisons situations. I am for it. If the Govt. is going to allow people to drink then allow them to "Smoke".
Comment by James M. Martin on April 20, 2009 at 10:19pm
If you re-read my post, it says "shortly after I first smoked." I think cannabis does strange things to you when you are not yet used to its effects. It was at that earliest use that I was so-effected. i also recall things like the illusion that the corner of the room was tipping, such that I wondered why I was not tumbling across the floor, lol.
Comment by Richard Goscicki on April 20, 2009 at 8:52pm
But evidence from studies, including laboratory simulations, feeds the stereotype that those under the influence of canniboids tend to (1) be more aware of their impaired psychomotor skills, and (2) drive well below the speed limit.

Good writing, Mac. Grass is fun even when you write about it.

Both you guys touched on the driving issue. I wish the universities would study the concerns of people instead of all the weird crap they're into. The authorities should know the facts and they don't. This whole DUI thing is an overreaction of a few MADD lawyers, (see DUI story above.)

I'd bet in a legitimate, reliable and valid driving experiment, the heads would do okay. You're more aware of speed, more respectful of this life, more courteous and less aggressive. Once you make an adaption to the effects of the smoke, you a good driver—but I'm just guessing. They need to explore the subject for the sake of people instead of money and corporate power.

Good writing, Mac. Grass is fun even when you write about it.

Both you guys touched on the driving issue. I wish the universities would study the concerns of people instead of all the weird crap they're into. The authorities should know the facts and they don't. This whole DUI thing is an overreaction of a few lawyers, (see DUI story above.)
I'd bet in a legitimate, reliabe and valid driving experiment, the heads would do okay. You're more aware of speed, more respectful of this life, more courteous and less aggressive. Once you make an adaption to the effects of the smoke, you a good driver—but I'm just guessing. They need to explore the subject for the sake of people and not money and corporate power.
Comment by James M. Martin on April 20, 2009 at 4:50pm
"...the numbers of "marijuana-only" traffic fatalities are so small....."

Well....? Seems to back up your plea for legalization. I am ex-drunk. I think pot is relatively harmless in comparison, athough when one first starts smoking it, the "time-lag phenomenon" (for want of a better phrase -- I mean, the perception that time is slowing down) sometimes results in risky driving. For example, just weeks or months after my first joint, I drove through the intersection of Santa Monica and Vine on a red light. "WHAT red light?" lol.
Comment by Mac Rex on April 20, 2009 at 1:57pm
Norm Stamper


Retired Seattle police chief, member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition
Posted April 20, 2009 | 11:01 AM (EST)
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420: Thoughts on Pot vs. Alcohol from a Former Police Chief
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Read More: 20th, 4-20, 4/20, 420, 4:20, Alcohol, April 20, Happy 420, Leap, Legalization, Legalize Marijuana, Marijuana, Marijuana Health Effects, Marijuana Holiday, National Pot Smoking Day, Overdose Deaths, Police, Pot, Pot Holiday, Prohibition, War On Drugs, Weed, Politics News


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As 5:00 p.m. rolls around my interior clock starts chiming. I'll have an ice-cold, bone-dry martini, thank you. Jalapeno olives and a twist. If the occasion calls for it (temperatures in the twenties, a hot political debate on the tube) I may substitute two fingers of Kentucky sour mash. Four-twenty? Doesn't resonate. But with April 20 approaching and Waldos of the world gearing up to celebrate their favorite day of the year, it's not a bad time to consider, yet again, the pluses and minuses of alcohol vs. cannabis.

First, a disclaimer: I am a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, but I don't officially represent the organization in this forum. That said, I can't very well check my affiliation, or beliefs, at the keyboard when I sit down to blog for HuffPost. We at LEAP are current and former cops and other criminal justice practitioners who have witnessed firsthand the futility and manifold injustices of the drug war. Our professional experiences have led us to conclude that the more dangerous an illicit substance--from crack to krank--the greater the justification for its legalization, regulation, and control. It is the prohibition of drugs that leads inexorably to high rates of death, disease, crime, and addiction.

Back to booze vs. pot. How do the effects of these two drugs stack up against specific health and public safety factors?

Alcohol-related traffic accidents claim approximately 14,000 lives each year, down significantly from 20 or 30 years ago (attributed to improved education and enforcement). Figures for THC-related traffic fatalities are elusive, especially since alcohol is almost always present in the blood as well, and since the numbers of "marijuana-only" traffic fatalities are so small. But evidence from studies, including laboratory simulations, feeds the stereotype that those under the influence of canniboids tend to (1) be more aware of their impaired psychomotor skills, and (2) drive well below the speed limit. Those under the influence of alcohol are much more likely to be clueless or defiant about their condition, and to speed up and drive recklessly.

Hundreds of alcohol overdose deaths occur annually. There has never been a single recorded marijuana OD fatality.

According to the American Public Health Association, excessive alcohol consumption is the third leading cause of death in this country. APHA pegs the negative economic impact of extreme drinking at $150 billion a year.

There have been no documented cases of lung cancer in a marijuana-only smoker, nor has pot been scientifically linked to any type of cancer. (Don't trust an advocate's take on this? Try the fair and balanced coverage over at Fox.) Alcohol abuse contributes to a multitude of long-term negative health consequences, notably cirrhosis of the liver and a variety of cancers.

While a small quantity, taken daily, is being touted for its salutary health effects, alcohol is one of the worst drugs one can take for pain management, marijuana one of the best.

Alcohol contributes to acts of violence; marijuana reduces aggression. In approximately three million cases of reported violent crimes last year, the offender had been drinking. This is particularly true in cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, and date rape. Marijuana use, in and of itself, is absent from both crime reports and the scientific literature. There is simply no link to be made.

Over the past four years I've asked police officers throughout the U.S. (and in Canada) two questions. When's the last time you had to fight someone under the influence of marijuana? (I'm talking marijuana only, not pot plus a six-pack or a fifth of tequila.) My colleagues pause, they reflect. Their eyes widen as they realize that in their five or fifteen or thirty years on the job they have never had to fight a marijuana user. I then ask: When's the last time you had to fight a drunk? They look at their watches.

All of which begs the question. If one of these two drugs is implicated in dire health effects, high mortality rates, and physical violence--and the other is not--what are we to make of our nation's marijuana laws? Or alcohol laws, for that matter.

Anybody out there want to launch a campaign for the re-prohibition of alcohol? Didn't think so. The answer, of course, is responsible drinking. Marijuana smokers, for their part, have already shown (apart from that little matter known as the law) greater responsibility in their choice of drugs than those of us who choose alcohol.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/norm-stamper/420-thoughts-on-pot-vs-al_b_188627.html

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