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24 July 2009 11:48 AM

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Not Your Father's Marijuana

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Comments (7)

Wow, no wonder the Johnson social programs were such a disaster. So most people, according Califano, do not drink alcohol to "get high" Then why are they drinking? And marijuana is addictive? Addictive to what? Pepperoni pizzas?

bhaack (Replying to: rickandgary)

Are you trying to be funny? Have you never had a drink without getting drunk? Have you never had a glass of wine without drinking the whole bottle?

Marijuana is consumed for one reason...to get high. Period.

I am all for making drugs legal. But lets be honest about these things.

Rhayader (Replying to: bhaack)

Well, to be fair, many sick people use marijuana for reasons other than "getting high". You could argue that their symptomatic relief is a result of the "high", but a cancer patient struggling to keep food down doesn't smoke pot just so Zeppelin sounds a lot cooler.

But even if we're speaking about recreational use, I think it's been pretty well-established that marijuana users often employ titration to adjust the effects of the drug; smokers will take "just one puff" just like a wine drinker will have "just one glass". Yes, that glass elevates the drinker's BAC, but doesn't necessarily make him or her intoxicated. The same is true for marijuana.

Contrary to popular perception, there is a such thing as responsible use for pretty much every substance under the sun. That is especially true for marijuana, even more so than alcohol. The idea that there is a fundamental difference in the motives of an alcohol drinker and a marijuana smoker is more of a red herring than any sort of substantial distinction.

Also, Califano says that we must hugely jack up taxes on alcohol, like what NYC did to tobacco. But there is already a giant organized crime syndicate being fueled by profits from smuggling untaxed cigarettes. Huge taxes on alcohol would create the same kind of crime syndicates as under 1920's prohibition.

Regardless of alleged strength, pot still doesnt kill people - Tylenol is far more dangerous. Alcohol is the biggest killer out of all drugs, legal or not. While pot may be alleged to be stronger, alcohol has become even more pervasive with hard liquor ads and kid friendly flavors.

Stronger pot is A GOOD THING for smoker's health. Stronger pot means you need to smoke less to get the same result (there's a point with weed where smoking more will not maker you any "higher," it will just make the experience last longer), thus exposing them to fewer of the negative effects of marijuana smoke, itself already orders of magnitude safer than cigarette smoke.

Marijuana prohibition's time has come and gone, governments need the revenue, and just like the first Great Depression ended Alcohol Prohibition when plunging tax receipts forced them to end the costly national experiment in temperance, this second and far worse Greater Depression will force the end of the stupid, useless and asinine War on (some) Drugs. Taxation and regulation of Marijuana will save the state government of California, and from there it will spread across the country.

Sorry DEA door kickers and puppy killers, you'll have to find more honest work than busting college kids and hippies for engaging in completely victimless crime.

Ulysses (not yet home)

What the drug problem in America needs is rational discourse, NOT blatherings from someone as disconnected as from reality as Mr Califano.


Statements like "most teen pregnancy occurs when one or both of the particpants are high..." are questionable in their accuracy, without a causal connection to getting pregnant in the way that he implies, AND probably not way statistically different from non teen, married or not, regulation, 'honey I want to have a baby before I get old, pregnancy.


And HORRORS, young WOMEN, at COLLEGE, are drinking ALCOHOL (gasp), as a DIS-INHIBITOR (hmmm, 'a puff, a party, a tragedy'?). I'm 58 and I seem to recall similiar behavior in 1974. Can you say clueless paternalism? Does anyone think that THIS is the person to be presented as an example of current thinking on this subject? Hey Atlantic... SWING, and a miss!

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