• Marijuana

    by David Lacy

    This column is not about legalizing marijuana. Nor is it about expanding the use of medicinal THC at the state and federal level.

    I’ve shared my views on those issues in previous articles as well as amongst friends and colleagues. And I respect your differing opinions on those matters.

    This column is about inexcusable incompetence.

    Here’s the incompetence part: Marijuana is just as detrimental to you and society as heroin and PCP. It’s worse for you than cocaine, meth, and steroids, as well as hundreds of other high-potency narcotics.

    Of course medical experts, chemists, scientists, and humanoids with multiple brain cells know this is laughably false, but there is one group that matters more than any other when it comes to the enforcement of drug policy, and they hold firmly on to this anachronistic belief.

    That group is the United States Department of Justice. And they’ve got pretty big biceps.

    The Drug Enforcement Administration (under the D.O.J.) classifies narcotics into five “schedules.” Schedule one drugs (including heroin and marijuana) are deemed the worst of the worst (and carry the maximum penalties for both possession and distribution) and schedule four drugs (supposedly relatively minor) carry much smaller punishments for usage. Schedule four, for the record, still includes Rohypnol and Xanax.

    Don’t believe me? Check it out yourself here:

    http://www.justice.gov/dea/pubs/scheduling.html

    Drug scheduling began in 1970 when Congress passed the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act. They married weed with heroin and recommended their agents arrest “pot-heads” before going after cocaine and morphine users. I’ll leave it up to you to figure out why the government had an interest in cracking down on marijuana (hint: it rhymes with both Wee-it-Nom and Hoodstock), but most historians now agree that the classification system was very much a political move.

    However, why in the world would the D.E.A. maintain such a bizarrely anti-scientific stance in the face of uniform disagreement from important research communities 41 years later?

    Say it with me ladies and gentlemen: “Ka-Ching!”

    Marijuana is one of the top cash crops in America and is the number ONE cash crop in the most populous states, according to multiple health agencies and news organizations. To “effectively” fight this rampant menace, the D.O.J. and D.E.A. require a lot of moolah, and if there’s one thing bureaucracies like, it’s capital. This would be nice if they had positive results to show for their enforcement efforts, yet sadly marijuana retains its hefty profit margins even as federal agents bust down doors and arrest stoners gorging on Twinkies.

    Interestingly, not one person has died of a marijuana overdose. This is not my opinion; this is an admission from F.B.I. director Robert Mueller to a congressional board in 2009. A tragic side note, however: approximately 450,000 people die every single year due to tobacco-related illnesses. If you scan the list on the link above you’ll notice tobacco doesn’t even make a guest appearance. Tobacco, boys and girls, with its nearly half-a-million-per-year fatality rate is “better” for you than weed. So whip out the Lucky Strikes and light up!

    To be fair, marijuana usage is NOT without risk, especially through the inhalation of pot smoke. Advocates who think it is are deluding themselves just as much as the anti-drug hardliners. There IS ample evidence that the smoke from marijuana is harmful to the lungs and there is evidence that overuse (regardless of method of intake) has negative consequences on the body.

    Then again, so does Tylenol. If you have a lot of hangovers, ask your liver how it likes those pain relievers. Hell, ask it how it likes the multiple tequila shots you slammed the night before.

    I’m going to take off now. It’s been a stressful week. I think I might go smoke a rock of crack cocaine. After all, according to the powers-that-be, it’s better for me than pot.

    Mmmmmmmm. I feel better already.

    Hey! A tooth just fell out! Maybe the tooth fairy will leave me some cash for my next score.



    • I think you have hit the nail, squarely on the head.


      • David Lacy

      • July 6, 2011 at 11:43 am
      • Reply

      Thanks Donald!


      • Astonia

      • July 6, 2011 at 12:34 pm
      • Reply

      David Lacy, you are near genius! I LOVE this article!

      P.S. I heard the tooth fairy leaves 5 dollar bills these days!


      • Ken Welton

      • July 6, 2011 at 1:03 pm
      • Reply

      I’m old enough to remember that the “Category One” ranking of marijuana came during the Reagan presidency and was a conservative knee-jerk reaction to the previous(Carter) president’s action of softening the official policy towards marijuana.



    • Way to say it David. I wonder if the medicinal marijuana will have an effect of lowering the price as it seems pretty available and no worries about what it is laced with. Time will tell here in California.


      • David Lacy

      • July 6, 2011 at 5:10 pm
      • Reply

      The Tooth fairy is leaving fivers? Woohoo!



    • David,
      It seems that the government sets the tone for much much more than drugs. They show us by example that it is OK to pick on someone that is weaker, thus it’s OK for a husband to beat his wife or children. It’s OK to lie and cheat to get what you want. It’s OK to change the meaning of words like sex and torture-there is no sex without penetration and there is no torture unless you have penetration. The government shows us by example that ethics is an outdated idea and if you are below a certain income then you don’t need healthcare. Only those criminals that fully understand the law can break the law without fear of being sent to prison. Todays youth are confused by the signals sent to them by the authorities so drugs are their only alternative.



    • Dang, we are writing in tandem… column duets… wild. I just reread this and noticed you used “ka-ching” in this column, and I just used that word in the column I just wrote (for Sunday), ALSO about the lunacy of all this.


      • Sue

      • July 9, 2011 at 5:51 pm
      • Reply

      Great information wrapped inside great wit!


      • David Lacy

      • July 11, 2011 at 1:27 pm
      • Reply

      Debra, I had forgotten about your ka-ching. Great minds think alike. And thank you Donald and Sue.



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