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Old 01-30-2005, 05:14 PM   #22
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No, marijuana should not be legalized. Plain and simple.

Originally Posted by
They then cited research by the National Institutes of Health showing that the use of marijuana adversely impacts concentration, motor coordination, memory, lungs and reproductive and immune systems.

A July 22 commentary in the Los Angeles Times elaborated on the health dangers of medical marijuana. "There is no scientific evidence that qualifies smoked marijuana to be called medicine," explained Andrea Barthwell, a deputy director at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy and a past president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine.

She noted that in 1999 the National Academy of Science's Institute of Medicine report said that "marijuana is not a modern medicine." The institute was particularly troubled by the notion that crude marijuana would be smoked by patients, which it termed "a harmful drug-delivery system."

A May 3 editorial in the British Medical Journal confirmed the dangers of marijuana. It observed that smoking marijuana is significantly more dangerous than smoking tobacco. Moreover, "regular use of cannabis is associated with an increased incidence of mental illnesses, most notably schizophrenia and depression." The editorial also cited research that shows heart problems can be brought on by smoking marijuana.

Also in Britain, Hamish Turner, president of the Coroner's Society, warned that marijuana use is leading to the deaths of hundreds of young people in accidents. Turner said that the drug, which is often portrayed as harmless, has increasingly been behind deaths recorded as accidents or suicides, the Telegraph reported Nov. 2.

He estimated that over the last year marijuana was a significant factor in about 10% of the 100 cases he had dealt with in south Devon. "It is an awful waste of young lives," he said. "People are trying the drug at a very young age. Many go on to harder drugs and I am dealing with more and more heroin overdoses."

Turner commented that stronger varieties of marijuana -- up to 10 times more potent than those used in the 1960s -- were now common. He warned that regular and prolonged use leads to panic attacks, paranoia, psychosis, racing heart, agitation, an increased risk of heart attacks and strokes, and even a tendency to violence.

The Telegraph reported that according to another coroner, Veronica Hamilton-Deely, national figures supplied by coroners' offices showed that in 2000, 12% of the 3,400 people killed in road accidents showed traces of cannabis: a sixfold increase on a decade earlier. The question remains why in the face of such overwhelming medical evidence governments are ceding to campaigns by pressure groups to extend its use.
The primary effects of marijuana are behavioral, because the drug affects the central nervous system. Marijuana has specific effects that may decrease one's ability to perform tasks requiring a great deal of coordination. Visual tracking is impaired and the sense of time is typically prolonged. Learning may be greatly affected because the drug diminishes one's ability to concentrate attention.
...And this is all even when a person is NOT high. To say that marijuana has not killed anyone is foolish. No, nobody has ever overdosed from it... But just like alcohol, people have been killed MANY times while using it.

Then there is the "pot is not addictive" excuse.

Originally Posted by
What are we to make of recent reports that marijuana has been discovered to be addictive? Such reports are based on the willingness of laboratory animals to self-administer THC, marijuana's active ingredient, through catheters implanted in their veins. According to Alan Leshner, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, this finding "emphasizes further the similarity between marijuana and other abusable, addicting substances."

Although Leshner is surely reflecting his government position in making such statements, he has grounds for this assertion. Earlier research had found that marijuana operates through the same neurochemical reward systems as alcohol, cocaine, and heroin. More importantly, the number of users who reported dependence symptoms has increased. The director of the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment, H. Westley Clark, announced, based on 600 adolescents in treatment: "The experts who worked on this project consider it both psychologically and physiologically (physically) addictive. Over 52 percent of the youthful marijuana users in this study admitted to enough problems to be considered dependent . . . ."

Many argue that classifying marijuana as addictive broadens the term to the point of meaninglessness, since the large majority of even regular marijuana users never experience tolerance or withdrawal (and are thus never studied in treatment centers). However, others could point out, only a minority of users of any substance — from crack to heroin — become addicted to these substances.

What the movement to reclassify marijuana, like cocaine before it, as addictive actually does is point out some fundamental truths about addiction. These truths are that addiction is not limited to any one substance, that no substance is so overwhelmingly addictive that most users succumb, and that addiction is not determined neurochemically but rather by observing the extreme and destructive attachments people form.

When, in a gambling fever, people go into debt, steal, and lose their jobs, families and freedom, we observe the extremity of attachment known throughout history as addiction. Like medieval alchemy's search for the philosopher's stone, medicine's search for such compulsions in the nervous system will appear ludicrously primitive in ages to come. There is no escaping a consideration of people's values, perceived opportunities, and life structure to find the causes and nature of addiction.
[url=]Marijuana has the potential to promote cancer of the lungs and other parts of the respiratory tract because it contains irritants and carcinogens.[/quote]

Some side effects? Lemme list you the side effects of marijuana even when you are NOT smoking it (after long term use).

-Trouble remembering things
-Paranoia (feeling that people are “out to get you”)
-Altered time perception
-Worsening coordination
-Breathing problems
-Increased appetite
-Reduced blood flow to the brain
-Changes in the reproductive organs
-Respiratory damage that can be worse than the ones caused by ciggarettes
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