Last time I spoke about marijuana legalization, I spoke out against about the amoral (please note I didn't say immoral) maijuana that will lead to big government. Now I look at the growing (pun not intended, this is not a joke) backlash on marijuana legalization.
And I can't believe I am saying this to start this article, but I actually agree with Patrick Kennedy here:
Former Rep. Patrick Kennedy says President Barack Obama is wrong about the dangers of marijuana, saying that the drug today is not like what the president smoked in his youth.
The former eight-term Rhode Island Democrat said Obama's statement in an interview this weekend that pot is not worse than alcohol was based on anecdotal evidence, not science.
"I think the president needs to speak to his NIH director in charge of drug abuse," Kennedy said on MSNBC's "Hardball" on Monday night. "[She] would tell the president that, in fact, today's modern, genetically modified marijuana, so it's much higher THC levels, far surpass the marijuana that the president acknowledges smoking when he was a young person."
Kennedy said government research shows that marijuana is harmful.
How harmful? Brain Damage for starters:
Scientists have confirmed the long-held suspicion that frequent heavy marijuana use damages the brain's memory and learning capacity.
Australian researchers have showed for the first time that the earlier people start their marijuana habit, the worse the brain damage.
"Our results suggest that long-term cannabis use is hazardous to white matter in the developing brain. This was especially true for those who had started in adolescence, as we know the brain is still developing during this time," Lead researcher Dr. Marc Seal, from Melbourne’s Murdoch Children's Research Institute said in a university release.
After measuring changes to the volume, strength and integrity of white matter in the brains of all participants, researchers found that long-term heavy cannabis users had disruptions in their white matter fibers.
The brain's white matter is responsible for information passed between different areas of grey matter within the nervous system, and unlike grey matter, which are the brain's thinking areas that peaks at age eight, white matter continues to develop as people age.
Seal and his team found that there was more than 80 percent reduction of white matter in the brains of users.
Pro-Life? Marijuana use during pregnancy may triple the risk of stillbirth:
Expectant mothers who smoke marijuana may increase their risk of stillbirth, according to a new study. Researchers from the University of Utah School of Medicine have found that marijuana use during pregnancy is associated with a threefold increase in the risk of fetal death — even when the mother uses no other substances.
Now we find out marijuana use could effect your grandchildren:
Now, new evidence shows an intergenerational effect on the motivation of rats whose genetic forbears had been exposed to marijuana. In experiments, investigators gave half the study population injections of marijuana’s active ingredient, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. The other half received a saline solution. A generation or two later, the descendents of the first group showed a lowered desire to seek the reward of “highly tasty food,” in laboratory experiments conducted by Yasmin Hurd, of Mount Sinai School of Medicine.
After one generation, male offspring from rats exposed to the drug showed lowered motivation and weight gain, though the metabolic effect disappeared by the third generation, Hurd reported last week at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.
In analyzing the expression of mitochondrial RNA among male offspring, investigators say they see a downregulation in glutamatergic receptors, including NMDA and AMPA receptors. The change occurred in adulthood and manifested only as reductions in receptor proteins. Aside from motivational change, the “epigenetic” exposure to THC heightened susceptibility to long-term depression in the dorsal — but not ventral — striatum following electrical stimulation. Moreover, those males showed an “unusual avoidance behavior” when investigators shown a bright light into the laboratory cage. Evidence of methylation, an epigenetic occurence first discovered in plants, shows the intergenerational effects of cannabis.
The former congressman said if the president believes alcohol is more dangerous, he should be concerned about legalizing and commercializing marijuana, because, Kennedy argues, America doesn't want another Big Tobacco or Big Alcohol.
"I mean, if the president feels alcohol is worse than tobacco, what's he prepared to do? And I'll tell you, the president won't be able to do a thing," Kennedy said. "Why? Because alcohol is too powerful an industry to change. And right now, we have a chance to stop another for-profit industry from targeting our public health."
I don't get this either. I keeep hearing alcohol and tobacco is worse, yet they want to legalized another drug? What?
In his recent New Yorker interview, President Obama remarked, "I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life." But then he added, "I don't think it is more dangerous than alcohol." Of the legalization in Colorado and Washington—never mind the unresolved conflict between state and federal law—he said, "it's important for it to go forward."
Got that? The same president who signed into law a tough federal anti-cigarette smoking bill in 2009 now supports marijuana legalization.
The inconsistency and self-contradiction is obvious. In the name of public health, liberals wage political war against genetically modified organisms, french fries and tubby kids, yet stand idly by, or worse, support the legalization of a mind-impairing substance known to be addictive and have deleterious effects on the brain.
The very same year, for example, that Colorado legalized marijuana, the Colorado Senate passed (without a single Republican vote) a ban on trans fats in schools. Are we to believe eating a glazed donut is more harmful than smoking a joint? California has already banned trans fats in restaurants statewide, but now is on the brink of legalizing marijuana statewide come November. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg supported New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's effort to decriminalize marijuana in New York State, while at the same time supporting a ban on extra-large sodas. A 32-ounce Mountain Dew is bad for you, but pot isn't?
The logic is dumbfounding.
And this is coming from liberals!
For many years, health-conscious liberals have waged a deafening, public war against cigarettes. Smoking bans in public places like restaurants and bars have been enacted in states all over the country. Recently, New York City, New Jersey and several other cities and states have extended those bans to include the newest tobacco fad—e-cigarettes. Yet, when it comes to smoking marijuana? Crickets.
What explains this obvious paradox?
This is where even the liberal brain trust breaks down. The answer is, of course, Big Government.
And the smartest person in the room? A Hot Air commentor named JAGonzo:
Legalize it all. Weed, heroin, cocaine, meth. Let them have it. If someone wants to shoot heroin until they OD, I say good riddance. My only issue is, they will want money for food because they won't be able to hold down a steady job. They will want money for housing. They will want the rest of us to take care of their kids. They will want money for rehab if they ever decide to quit. They will want employment mandates, i.e. an employer has to hire them regardless of drug use. These people better be willing to accept the consequences of their decisions. Of course they won't.
As Colorado ushers in legalized pot, proponents of reform often cite a singular statistic: No one has ever died of a marijuana overdose. However, some say that's setting the bar too high. A wider availability of marijuana may increase rates of accidental ingestions by children attracted to cookies and other candies laced with the drug.
On Tuesday, a two-year-old girl ingested marijuana accidentally by eating a cookie she'd found in front of her apartment building in Longmont, Colo. Aida Hernandez said that she told her daughter to throw away the cookie and didn't realize anything was wrong until they'd gone out shopping. The girl later tested positive at the hospital for marijuana's active ingredient, delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). "She was sleepy, she was opening and closing her eyes, and she couldn't walk very well,' Hernandez told FOX31 Denver after police began investigating with social services on the case.
Detective Commander Jeff Satur said police had failed to find any signs of drug use after searching the family's home. "At this point we believe the family," Satur said.
Wake up people! Legalized pot does not mean responsibility. That girl is now scarred. Her young 2-year-old brain has been altered in ways we can't understand by some careless fool.
Actually, almost nobody gets locked up for pot. Americans collectively smoke for three billion days a year and use has increased 38% since 2007, according to a Rand Corp. analysis of federal health survey data, yet there were merely about 750,000 marijuana-related "arrests" in the U.S. in 2012. In the official FBI statistics that can mean anything from a ticket or summons to a full booking.
Very few people are incarcerated for simple possession, which makes up about 88% of arrests. There are currently about 40,000 state and federal prisoners serving time for marijuana-related convictions, and most have violent criminal histories. Most judges must be persuaded that someone is a true danger to society to sentence prison for mere drug use.
Even the amoral slime pit Amsterdam has almost had enough. Yet here we are, about to go down their path. But whatever. People are going to want to legalize it. Like JAGonzo I welcome the oppuntity to document the downward slide towards the amoral, drugged-addle America we so richly deserve.
PS: Dispite tobacco and alcohol being legal, there is a big black market for each of them. Legalizing Marijuana will not kill the black market for it, especially if we tax it and regulate it. There's a reason why we have the ATF (which we will have to rename ATMF *thumbs up*).