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Community (Misc.) => General => Debates/Serious Discussions => Topic started by: atommo on September 13, 2015, 01:05:09 PM

Title: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 13, 2015, 01:05:09 PM
In the UK recently there's been quite a stir-up in wanting Cannabis to be legalised (mainly as a result of https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/104349 (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/104349)). You can sign this petition if you want, although it's for UK residents only.

To an average-joe who knows nothing they may shrug this off as "Huh. Guess those stoners want to get high more easily." However, the more research you do into Cannabis, the more questionable the reason why Cannabis is illegal becomes.

This explains the story behind the outlawing of Cannabis: http://www.drugpolicy.org/blog/how-did-marijuana-become-illegal-first-place (http://www.drugpolicy.org/blog/how-did-marijuana-become-illegal-first-place)

Summed-up version: Back in the 1920s Mexicans immigrated to America and the media wanted to stir up some hatred towards them (... the whole hatred against immigrants sounds scarily similar to now). Anyway, the Mexicans brought with them Cannabis which they referred to as “marihuana”. Americans were actually using Cannabis themselves in medicine and other products, and didn't realise the Mexicans were using the same drug.

"The demonization of the cannabis plant was an extension of the demonization of the Mexican immigrants". This eventually led to it being outlawed. For the more detailed story read the link.

So from that story, it indicates Cannabis was regularly used as a medicine and was not harmful. This directly contradicts the reasoning the UK government uses (they say Cannabis is harmful).

The even crazier thing is there seems to be a link between Cannabis and fighting cancer. However, Cancer UK claims there is no evidence from clinical trials. This raises the question... when will there be clinical trials? Hmm.

Here's some links to some stories where people have used Cannabis to combat cancer:

- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3043607/Cannabis-oil-cured-bowel-cancer-claims-father-33-given-just-18-months-live.html (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3043607/Cannabis-oil-cured-bowel-cancer-claims-father-33-given-just-18-months-live.html) (17 April 2015)

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2699875/I-cured-cancer-CANNABIS-OIL.html (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2699875/I-cured-cancer-CANNABIS-OIL.html) (21 July 2014)

I would take these with a pinch of salt because they're not from the most credible sources, but they seem to mostly be about the person who used the drug rather than the sensationalised storm stories they have been known to come up with.

While there may be some health risks to Cannabis, it is shown to be far]/i] less harmful than alcohol or cigarettes, so outlawing it based on that is just hypocritical. This makes me have a horrible feeling that pharma companies are involved, trying to stop its use since Cannabis cannot be patented meaning less profits. I cannot confirm that, but it would make a lot of sense.

So... after reading the history behind Cannabis and the scientific evidence of its health effects, are you for or against Cannabis and why? (I strongly recommend you read the links I included and possibly do some researching yourself first).

Also just to say, at the time of this posting I have not taken any cannabis (and probably won't unless I end up in some desperate situation such as terminal cancer, like in those stories).
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 13, 2015, 01:34:41 PM
A thought on something you mentioned. "Cannabis is less harmful than alcohol and cigarettes." So basically, someone is admitting that cannabis is harmful, and it should be legalized just because it's LESS harmful than other things. That's a strange kind of reasoning.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 13, 2015, 01:39:56 PM
A thought on something you mentioned. "Cannabis is less harmful than alcohol and cigarettes." So basically, someone is admitting that cannabis is harmful, and it should be legalized just because it's LESS harmful than other things. That's a strange kind of reasoning.

Well technically most drugs, legal or not, are harmful to some degree. In fact, according to RT (http://www.rt.com/usa/234903-marijuana-safer-alcohol-deadly/ (http://www.rt.com/usa/234903-marijuana-safer-alcohol-deadly/)) "Smoking marijuana is 114 times safer than drinking alcohol".
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 13, 2015, 01:46:49 PM
Yeah, actually, we should get rid of all drugs! Can't have people put that stuff in their bodies, can we.
Of course, it's nigh impossible with things that are legal already. I have no idea how things look with cigarettes, but at least it's become harder to be a smoker these days. Alcohol though is so widespread, you couldn't get people to stop if you wanted to (prohibition, anyone?). So here's a drug where something can still be done, let's fight it!
Yes, I'm being annoying on purpose.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: TheFlyingMarlin on September 13, 2015, 02:05:53 PM
As I'm pretty sure you know, this has been going on in the US for quite some time now. However, since the US has a federal system (unlike the UK, which is unitary), the individual states are able to make their own laws so long as they do not contradict federal law (cannabis laws are not being enforced on a federal level). Because of this, the states of Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Alaska, and the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis in all contexts, with over half of the other states allowing it for medicinal purposes. Some states have decriminalized possession as well.

Personally, I support cannabis legalization, since it would be better for everyone if it was regulated than outright illegal. If it is purchased from a licensed dispensary, cannabis would very likely be far safer than if purchased from some random guy off the street, who very well may have laced it with God-knows-what. Also, a lot of government funds are being wasted on enforcing cannabis laws when they could be used to fund drug treatment. Prison overcrowding is also a problem, which could be fixed if nonviolent offenders were not taken to jail.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Eli on September 13, 2015, 02:08:48 PM
Quote from: atommo
So... after reading the history behind Cannabis and the scientific evidence of its health effects, are you for or against Cannabis and why?
I don't think I will ever use Cannabis personally, but I'm all right with it becoming legal in your country or mine.
Why? Because I don't think banning drugs has been that effective really, so maybe is better to make a not so harmful drug legal instead of putting it in the same place as the more harmful ones.

Personally, I support cannabis legalization, since it would be better for everyone if it was regulated than outright illegal. If it is purchased from a licensed dispensary, cannabis would very likely be far safer than if purchased from some random guy off the street, who very well may have laced it with God-knows-what. Also, a lot of government funds are being wasted on enforcing cannabis laws when they could be used to fund drug treatment. Prison overcrowding is also a problem, which could be fixed if nonviolent offenders were not taken to jail.
I just saw your post, I agree with your reason.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 13, 2015, 02:10:34 PM
Yeah, actually, we should get rid of all drugs! Can't have people put that stuff in their bodies, can we.
Of course, it's nigh impossible with things that are legal already. I have no idea how things look with cigarettes, but it's become harder to be a smoker these days. Alcohol though is so widespread, you couldn't get people to stop if you wanted to (prohibition, anyone?). So here's a drug where something can still be done, let's fight it!
Yes, I'm being annoying on purpose.
Its good that you're taking the other stance or otherwise it looks a bit one-sided :P

It is true that things have become harder for smokers, but if they're determined enough they're still going to smoke. To be honest, I'd rather be in an area where someone's smoking Cannabis than someone smoking a cigarette (cigarette smoke makes my throat feel dirty).

Also Cannabis indicates health benefits compared to cigarettes which show health disadvantages (I mean, before the whole Mexican immigration hate in the 1900s Cannabis was commonly used in medicine (and possibly for recreation) with no qualms).

All of this leads me back to the feeling I get of cigarettes and alcohol being legal because they don't cure illness; therefore they are not a threat to big pharma companies. Cannabis can possibly treat and even cure cancer in some cases (and help treat many other illnesses- another being Multiple Sclerosis), which would be a BIG threat to the profits of those pharma companies.

I agree with you on the alcohol part. 3 out of 5 of my family drink alcohol fairly regularly (me being one of the other 2 out of 5 that don't drink alcohol).

As I'm pretty sure you know, this has been going on in the US for quite some time now. However, since the US has a federal system (unlike the UK, which is unitary), the individual states are able to make their own laws so long as they do not contradict federal law (cannabis laws are not being enforced on a federal level). Because of this, the states of Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Alaska, and the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis in all contexts, with over half of the other states allowing it for medicinal purposes. Some states have decriminalized possession as well.

Personally, I support cannabis legalization, since it would be better for everyone if it was regulated than outright illegal. If it is purchased from a licensed dispensary, cannabis would very likely be far safer than if purchased from some random guy off the street, who very well may have laced it with God-knows-what. Also, a lot of government funds are being wasted on enforcing cannabis laws when they could be used to fund drug treatment. Prison overcrowding is also a problem, which could be fixed if nonviolent offenders were not taken to jail.

All of those are good points. The money is also a point being used in favour of legalisation in the UK. If Cannabis was legal and taxed then the government would likely see a huge jump in money. The police wouldn't have to deal with Cannabis users, giving them more time to do other things and at the same time money would be made from the official sales tax (like with cigarettes and alcohol, but in a less deadly and potentially healthy form).
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 13, 2015, 02:45:36 PM
Also Cannabis indicates health benefits compared to cigarettes which show health disadvantages (I mean, before the whole Mexican immigration hate in the 1900s Cannabis was commonly used in medicine (and possibly for recreation) with no qualms).

They also have bad effects, such as hindering the brain development in young brains - not a good thing for kids and teens who smoke it for years. Sure there would be an age limit if it gets legalized, but making it a substance that can be bought everywhere would make it easier for them to get it.
And they can induce schizophrenia. I once read someone dismissing this point as "well, yeah, but only if you have a predisposition for it!". Okay, raise your hands, everyone who knows for sure that they have no predisposition for it. I had an acquaintance in whom the condition had been triggered by weed, anecdotal as that may be.

Quote
All of this leads me back to the feeling I get of cigarettes and alcohol being legal because they don't cure illness; therefore they are not a threat to big pharma companies. Cannabis can possibly treat and even cure cancer in some cases (and help treat many other illnesses- another being Multiple Sclerosis), which would be a BIG threat to the profits of those pharma companies.

I'm very very sceptical whenever people assume there are big conspiracies.
My assumption is rather, cigarettes and alcohol are legal because they've been legal for a very very long time, since before people made laws on this kind of stuff: Alcohol has been around since the dawn of civilization, and tobacco has been used in Western civilization since the discovery of the New World. And it is very hard to take away people's drugs once they are in wide use.
The pharma industry could even jump on the bandwagon and develop their own cure using cannabis, and then sell it for a nice profit. Because from what I read so far, there is no full cure using the substance yet, I just saw statements on "beneficial effects".
(Okay, there was one person claiming to have cured their skin cancer by rubbing cannabis oil on it, but I'm still sceptical since it sounds so fantastical. If it's true, I'd like to point out that cancer is not just on the surface of the skin, the big danger is tumor cells moving and spreading within the body.)

Oh, and it does feel like weed will get legal everywhere eventually. So much for whatever my opinions on this subject are, feels like it's not gonna change that.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 13, 2015, 03:02:49 PM
If Cannabis could be patented I'm pretty sure there would already be some sort of treatment involving it. It is because a plant cannot be patented that you see such a lack in clinical trials regarding it.

I'm very very sceptical whenever people assume there are big conspiracies.
My assumption is rather, cigarettes and alcohol are legal because they've been legal for a very very long time, since before people made laws on this kind of stuff: Alcohol has been around since the dawn of civilization, and tobacco has been used in Western civilization since the discovery of the New World. And it is very hard to take away people's drugs once they are in wide use.

"The text describes the drug [Cannabis] as “a substance that is safer than alcohol, and has many uses. It is believed to have been used by humans for over 4,000 years, being made illegal in the UK in 1925”" - http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website (http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website)

The predisposition to schizophrenia is a good point though. However; if I had terminal cancer I'd rather try Cannabis and put up with schizophrenia than die (unless for some reason I would prefer to die). Also, when you mentioned you were confused to how Cannabis could treat internal cancer, the Cannabis oil can be consumed (atleast I think that's how it is).

Also when I think about it, I've read some of the possible side-effects of an anti-dandruff shampoo (mentioning hair falling out and other crazy stuff). So its not like Cannabis is the only drug out there to have some potentially crazy side effects.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 13, 2015, 03:23:58 PM
If Cannabis could be patented I'm pretty sure there would already be some sort of treatment involving it. It is because a plant cannot be patented that you see such a lack in clinical trials regarding it.


I'm still not sure what is being claimed. Are they claiming that pure weed (via smoking, eating, bodily application) will cure cancer? If so, it should be easy to find out now in those US states where it's legal for medical purposes. And if it can be proven there, it would be a lot easier to argue for medicinal weed anywhere (which of course is not the same as weed for everybody).
Or are they saying part of whatever makes up cannabis is somehow beneficial? Then it needs research so whatever is behind that effect can be used to its full extent. Which will likely require making a medicine in pill form. Which means big profits await the one developing it, because you can patent those.

Quote
"The text describes the drug [Cannabis] as “a substance that is safer than alcohol, and has many uses. It is believed to have been used by humans for over 4,000 years, being made illegal in the UK in 1925”" - [url]http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website[/url] ([url]http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website[/url])


But not in the Western world. Not in Europe, and apparently not in the USA if it came there via Mexican immigrants.
I have no information though on the countries where it was first used. Was it always legal there? Were there ever tries to outlaw it, and did they work?

Quote
The predisposition to schizophrenia is a good point though. However; if I had terminal cancer I'd rather try Cannabis and put up with schizophrenia than die (unless for some reason I would prefer to die). Also, when you mentioned you were confused to how Cannabis could treat internal cancer, the Cannabis oil can be consumed (atleast I think that's how it is).


Okay, but weed legalization is about making it legal for everyone :P
It often sounds like medicinal weed proponents argue for it in hopes of making it acceptable enough to then become universally legal.
I can't in all seriousness argue against working cure for cancer. That would be inhuman. So if they can get it to work, then the cure should be allowed.

And now I should go to bed. Have a good one, man, and thanks for the discussion!
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: GingerCorslette on September 13, 2015, 05:53:50 PM
In my country, if you prohibit these kind of things, it doesn't mean it'll go away.  It's just that the criminals - street criminals or business criminals - will run it.  They eventually make a lot of money, and sad to say most of the really rich people here are not like Bill Gates; instead, they'll want even more money for themselves and less for the others.  So I'm saying it's mainly a money thing, but that's just my opinion.  I mean, what's then the use of setting up a weed shop or taxing weed when everyone can grow it in their backyard...

As for the craziness stuff, weed is a little like acid where you have to be in a good 'set and setting' so to speak before using it - unlike alcohol where you can drink whatever mood you're in and feel more or less the same the next morning.  There are precautions to be taken for sure.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: TheFlyingMarlin on September 13, 2015, 07:08:17 PM
In my country, if you prohibit these kind of things, it doesn't mean it'll go away.

Same thing here; most people (or at least a good chunk of them) who would smoke pot if it were legal already do.

most of the really rich people here are not like Bill Gates; instead, they'll want even more money for themselves and less for the others.

Yeah, unfortunately Bill Gates is one of the few rich Americans who uses his money for good; many really rich people over here hoard their money as well.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: EgotisticalRaven on September 13, 2015, 11:19:35 PM
I don't know about the whole weed thing. I mean I hate being around people who are drunk, and I cannot imagine what it's like having high people around me, it just makes me feel uncomfortable. And I don't know how I'd like for people to be smoking weed near me or for the smell of it to be everywhere. At least with beer people cannot get others drunk by simply being around them, whereas with cigarettes you can get second-hand smoke and I'd imagine with weed there would be some form of second-hand smoke.

Other than comfort wise, I would be pretty happy for people to smoke it in their homes or to use it, as that part doesn't affect me. About the whole thing of side-effects and such, I think that stuff would only really happen if you take too much of it. Too much of anything is bad for you.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 14, 2015, 05:31:11 AM
If Cannabis could be patented I'm pretty sure there would already be some sort of treatment involving it. It is because a plant cannot be patented that you see such a lack in clinical trials regarding it.


I'm still not sure what is being claimed. Are they claiming that pure weed (via smoking, eating, bodily application) will cure cancer? If so, it should be easy to find out now in those US states where it's legal for medical purposes. And if it can be proven there, it would be a lot easier to argue for medicinal weed anywhere (which of course is not the same as weed for everybody).
Or are they saying part of whatever makes up cannabis is somehow beneficial? Then it needs research so whatever is behind that effect can be used to its full extent. Which will likely require making a medicine in pill form. Which means big profits await the one developing it, because you can patent those.

Regarding that: you can grow your own Cannabis and make your own Cannabis oil (the main form of medical treatment which people tend to take in pills/on its own)- sure, pharma companies can sell it too but they won't be able to stop people making their own- you can only patent something you have invented such as a chemical compound (i.e. chemotherapy cream). You cannot patent a plant/plant remedy since it was not invented, rather, discovered.

Quote
"The text describes the drug [Cannabis] as “a substance that is safer than alcohol, and has many uses. It is believed to have been used by humans for over 4,000 years, being made illegal in the UK in 1925”" - [url]http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website[/url] ([url]http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jul/25/cannabis-legalisation-petition-government-website[/url])


But not in the Western world. Not in Europe, and apparently not in the USA if it came there via Mexican immigrants.
I have no information though on the countries where it was first used. Was it always legal there? Were there ever tries to outlaw it, and did they work?

It seems you misread that story. From http://www.drugpolicy.org/blog/how-did-marijuana-become-illegal-first-place: (http://www.drugpolicy.org/blog/how-did-marijuana-become-illegal-first-place:)

"Mexican immigrants referred to this plant as “marihuana”. While Americans were very familiar with “cannabis” because it was present in almost all tinctures and medicines available at the time, the word “marihuana” was a foreign term. So, when the media began to play on the fears that the public had about these new citizens by falsely spreading claims about the “disruptive Mexicans” with their dangerous native behaviors including marihuana use, the rest of the nation did not know that this “marihuana” was a plant they already had in their medicine cabinets."

I recommend you read the full story in the link.

Quote
The predisposition to schizophrenia is a good point though. However; if I had terminal cancer I'd rather try Cannabis and put up with schizophrenia than die (unless for some reason I would prefer to die). Also, when you mentioned you were confused to how Cannabis could treat internal cancer, the Cannabis oil can be consumed (atleast I think that's how it is).


Okay, but weed legalization is about making it legal for everyone :P
It often sounds like medicinal weed proponents argue for it in hopes of making it acceptable enough to then become universally legal.
I can't in all seriousness argue against working cure for cancer. That would be inhuman. So if they can get it to work, then the cure should be allowed.

I guess I'm more for making Cannabis freely available mainly because of the medical benefits. You shouldn't need to have some medical condition to be able to use it: it can help keep you healthy (like vitamin C+D tablets) on top of being a treatment. A bit like Aloe Vera has healing properties and can be grown at home, its a bit ridiculous how you can't grow Cannabis at home for medical purposes.

Also, there are many medicines that many people with terminal conditions would love to try but the medical board blocks them since they aren't 'tested'. Thing is, I'd rather try risking an 'unproven' treatment that could possibly cure me than die anyway. Before testing is done those people are usually dead. Its a broken system in that way. Surely you should allow those people to try it if they want to (ofcourse making them aware of the risks), and they can be the test cases.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 14, 2015, 12:35:31 PM
Ugh, I'd love to reply in detail but will be stuck in this hotel until Friday, currently without Wi-Fi password. Typing this on my mobile which has internet but is a pain for posting. So it'll have to wait at least until I get a Wi-Fi password. Or till I'm back home.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Unimaginative Username on September 14, 2015, 03:26:55 PM
Coke and opium were legal too. I also can't see how Mexicans using Cannabis holds any relevance to the laws in the UK - my browser blocks the article from loading, but since the website seems to be pro-drugs I would assume it may be purposely misleading with the aim to favour drug legalisation.

What are the potential issues that arise from legalising it's usage though? For example, legalising cannabis would logically also increase the number of people who are driving whilst intoxicated by it - "Generally,
regular cannabis users displayed more driving errors than non-regular cannabis users in contrast to expectations"[1] and if the mentioned study is correct then it is safe to assume that the number of motor collisions will marginally increase, causing an increased risk of injury and death to other drivers and pedestrians. For this reason alone I would be against it being fully legalised.

There are also concerns of it being a "gateway-drug", but this is difficult to prove or disprove - and most likely varies on the person.

As a prescription drug for medical use, I would not be opposed to it. It's definitely not as hard as something like Tramadol, which is a highly addictive painkiller which can be obtained via prescriptions - as a side note I would not recommend Tramadol, pain is preferable to it. So provided there is sufficient evidence that it has medical uses then I don't see an issue here.

As always, there is a lot of bias surrounding this issue and I find that this makes it difficult to discern reliable articles from conjecture. Because of this 'cloud of doubt' I find it hard to believe that the government would ever legalise such a thing, especially since it would almost seem hypocritical to do so with the offensives against smoking currently going on.

[1]Lenné M, Dietze P, Triggs T, Walmsley S, Murphy B, Redman J. The effects of cannabis and alcohol on simulated arterial driving: influences of driving experience and task demand. Accid Anal Prev. 2010;42:859-866.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: GingerCorslette on September 14, 2015, 07:05:34 PM
What are the potential issues that arise from legalising it's usage though? For example, legalising cannabis would logically also increase the number of people who are driving whilst intoxicated by it - "Generally, regular cannabis users displayed more driving errors than non-regular cannabis users in contrast to expectations"[1] and if the mentioned study is correct then it is safe to assume that the number of motor collisions will marginally increase, causing an increased risk of injury and death to other drivers and pedestrians. For this reason alone I would be against it being fully legalised.

This applies more to alcohol, which is legal.

Based on personal experience, one is inclined to drive significantly slow when high.  I don't know how to explain it; it's highly not recommended at all, but it's like that - you'd drive way, waaaaay slower than usual.  Of course you will commit errors because you're thinking is affected, but they aren't like alcohol-related motor accidents which typically involve violence and over-speeding.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 15, 2015, 03:37:59 AM
Coke and opium were legal too. I also can't see how Mexicans using Cannabis holds any relevance to the laws in the UK - my browser blocks the article from loading, but since the website seems to be pro-drugs I would assume it may be purposely misleading with the aim to favour drug legalisation.
I'll just copy/paste the whole thing in here. I'll leave it up to you to decide whether or not it's biased. Also I'm guessing the whole stigma of marijuana carried over to the UK from America.

Spoiler: show
"Dear Doctors,

“With so much information coming out about the medical value of marijuana, and that marijuana is not as dangerous as alcohol, why was it made illegal in the first place?”

Sincerely,

Looking for a history lesson
Dear Looking,

That is an excellent question. Now that many politicians and the public are taking a more objective look at marijuana, many are asking about the legal history of marijuana and how it ended up in the category of drugs deemed most dangerous by the federal government (Schedule I).

To understand how we ended up here, it is important to go back to what was happening in the United States in the early 1900’s just after the Mexican Revolution. At this time we saw an influx of immigration from Mexico into states like Texas and Louisiana. Not surprising, these new Americans brought with them their native language, culture and customs. One of these customs was the use of cannabis as a medicine and relaxant.

Mexican immigrants referred to this plant as “marihuana”. While Americans were very familiar with “cannabis” because it was present in almost all tinctures and medicines available at the time, the word “marihuana” was a foreign term. So, when the media began to play on the fears that the public had about these new citizens by falsely spreading claims about the “disruptive Mexicans” with their dangerous native behaviors including marihuana use, the rest of the nation did not know that this “marihuana” was a plant they already had in their medicine cabinets.

The demonization of the cannabis plant was an extension of the demonization of the Mexican immigrants. In an effort to control and keep tabs on these new citizens, El Paso, TX borrowed a play from San Francisco’s playbook, which had outlawed opium decades earlier in an effort to control Chinese immigrants. The idea was to have an excuse to search, detain and deport Mexican immigrants.

That excuse became marijuana.

This method of controlling people by controlling their customs was quite successful, so much so that it became a national strategy for keeping certain populations under the watch and control of the government.

During hearings on marijuana law in the 1930’s, claims were made about marijuana’s ability to cause men of color to become violent and solicit sex from white women. This imagery became the backdrop for the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 which effectively banned its use and sales.

While the Act was ruled unconstitutional years later, it was replaced with the Controlled Substances Act in the 1970’s which established Schedules for ranking substances according to their dangerousness and potential for addiction. Cannabis was placed in the most restrictive category, Schedule I, supposedly as a place holder while then President Nixon commissioned a report to give a final recommendation.

The Schafer Commission, as it was called, declared that marijuana should not be in Schedule I and even doubted its designation as an illicit substance. However, Nixon discounted the recommendations of the commission, and marijuana remains a Schedule I substance.

In 1996, California became the first state to approve the use of marijuana for medical purposes, ending its 59 year reign as an illicit substance with no medical value. Prior to 1937, cannabis had enjoyed a 5000 year history as a therapeutic agent across many cultures. In this context, its blip as an illicit and dangerous drug was dwarfed by its role as a medicine.

Opponents of medical marijuana regulations claim that there is not enough research to warrant medicinal use, but supporters of medical marijuana point to the 5000 years of history where cannabis was widely used as evidence for its medical efficacy.

Now that 23 states, plus Washington, DC, have passed medical marijuana laws, the public is questioning the utility of keeping marijuana under lock and key, especially in light of the racist and propagandized basis for making it illegal in the first place.

In just a few weeks, Florida, Oregon, Alaska and Washington DC voters will have the opportunity to put an additional nail in the coffin of prohibition by voting to legalize medical access in Florida and adult access in Oregon, Alaska and Washington DC. Changing the marijuana laws in these states and more to come is one of the first steps in dismantling the racially motivated war on drugs.

Sincerely,

The Doctors

Dr. Malik Burnett is a former surgeon and physician advocate. He also served as executive director of a medical marijuana nonprofit organization. Amanda Reiman, PhD, holds a doctorate in Social Welfare and teaches classes on drug policy at the University of California-Berkeley."


Also I'd be happy enough for it to just be available on prescription. I just want cannabis oil to be available to those who suffer from cancer among other things.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Sun on September 15, 2015, 08:59:03 AM
Back to wi-fi, back to posting.
So there are a few things we've been tossing around, which are not all the same.
Let me enumerate:
"Cannabis should be legalized." vs. "Cannabis should be legalized for medical purposes."
It looks like we all agree on the medical part.

"Cannabis should be legalized because it was legal in the past."
Well, that's not an argument in itself. Witch burning was also legal at some point and I doubt that means we should get it back.

"Cannabis should be legalized because people consumed it in the past."
It doesn't really matter for the question ("Should cannabis be legalized?") whether people have used it before, so it's actually a mock argument
In any case, we were referring to different things here.
You quoted 4000 years of medical use as proof that it had been in use for a long time.
I was referring it not having been in widespread everyday use in Western civilization, the way that alcohol and tobacco were consumed by people for centuries. I cannot speak for other parts of the world, but cannabis was not a staple in the life of Western people until maybe the (late?) 19th century. Even then, most people likely only bought it as a part of quack "patent medicines". And I made that point to demonstrate why it was easier to take cannabis away from people than cigarettes and alcohol - if it's not something everybody uses every day, there's less resistance against it being taken away.

"Legalized cannabis may lead to some accidents, but that should be no concern because currently-legal alcohol causes more accidents." (GingerCorslette, you didn't say that literally, but that's what it sounds like to me).
Yes, alcohol is a bad offender! And we cannot even get rid of it (as mentioned before, prohibition didn't work).
Why then would we voluntarily add another drug to the mix that could add more accidents if we can avoid it?
We're not really saying "Those extra deaths don't matter because the drug that caused them is less harmful", are we? ;)
It's once again the argument where we admit that cannabis is harmful but that's fine because it's less harmful than something else.

Okay, I don't feel like writing more about the other arguments right now. May still add something later.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on September 15, 2015, 10:43:02 AM
I guess one of the best ways to deal with the 'dangerous drug driving' is make a rule that only allows people to take them at home/inside buildings and not be allowed to drive until after a certain time after taking the drug.

I mean, it may not work 100%, but current cannabis prohibition is not 100% effective either. It would cut out a lot of potential accidents though.

Also Sun legalising cannabis may reduce accidents in another way: currently to acquire cannabis you have to go through criminals. Who knows what is in the stuff the criminals provide. If it is regulated, it will be much safer to use, thus less risk of illness.

Also another argument I've seen thats quite amusing is 'cannabis tears apart society, it should be kept illegal'. And why does it tear apart society? Because its illegal. If it wasn't it probably wouldn't be viewed as so terrible, thus wouldn't damage the prospects of young people's futures (since that who the anti people seem to like referring to). Its like saying something should stay illegal because its illegal.

Either way, so long as people are informed of the risks, its up to them to decide whether to take drugs or not, that decision shouldn't be made for them. Just implement rules to minimise risk if/when people do decide to take drugs.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Unimaginative Username on September 17, 2015, 10:07:02 AM
...

What he said.

Also Sun legalising cannabis may reduce accidents in another way: currently to acquire cannabis you have to go through criminals. Who knows what is in the stuff the criminals provide. If it is regulated, it will be much safer to use, thus less risk of illness.

That's probably an argument which is more applicable to amphetamines - though I have heard of a few cases like this with cannabis - where the drug is being taken along with a mix of impurities which are more harmful than the actual drug; probably to bulk up the pills/capsules/ect as a way of selling the same amount of product for more money.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: Erenussocrates on September 17, 2015, 10:55:01 PM
They are most probably overrated, and so far the guys I saw on youtube seem to have lost an IQ point or so by the excessive use of it. But oh well, if enough people wants it unbanned, it might eventually be unbanned, right? Not my country (not yet at least :P ) not my problem :P If I was living there and it got unbanned, I could have tried it once or twice, but I'm not overall a "narcotic"-happy guy, not drooling over it or anything.
Title: Re: Cannabis
Post by: atommo on June 12, 2018, 10:59:29 AM
Been a long time (around 3 years) since the last post here but found a relevant video discussing arguments against legalising cannabis (and why they're generally not very good arguments):
3 Arguments Why Marijuana Should Stay Illegal Reviewed (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kP15q815Saw#)