Contrary to pro-pot propaganda, marijuana is addictive. About seven and a half million Americans are marijuana addicts, and like children who are knowingly breaking the rules, they are trying to get as many people as possible complicit in their dangerous and illicit activity.
Their strategy to accomplish this is to first crack the logical and common sense resistance to affording general access to an hallucinogenic substance by advancing unsupported claims of the medicinal attributes of the drug. Once they've crossed that hurdle, they start touting the advantages of marijuana as a recreational drug, invoking such irrelevant and inaccurate arguments as "smoking pot is a victimless crime," and "freeing up law enforcement officers to concentrate on real crimes would make our communities safer," and the big ringer, "Smoking pot is no worse than smoking tobacco or drinking a martini."
These claims are easily refuted First of all, there is no evidence that marijuana has any therapeutic or healthful effects. None! On the contrary, the use of this drug has been tied to numerous physical and mental health problems.
The active ingredient in marijuana, delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), mimics Anandamide, a brain chemical essential to the functioning of the neural communication system that controls such brain functions as physical coordination, concentration and problem solving, and learning and memory, as well as normal brain development. The substitution of THC for Anandamide in the brain disrupts the functioning of this neural network, resulting in arrested brain development – particularly in fetuses and young people – impaired judgment, inaccuracies in coordination and delays in response time, and reduced ability to think accurately and clearly.
Marijuana raises the heart rate by as much as 100% for up to three hours after smoking, posing the risk of cardiac arrest, especially for older or obese smokers. Marijuana smoke is injurious to the lungs, and its effects on response time, motor coordination, and the ability to process data render the user highly accident prone and unfit to drive or to operate machinery.
The mental deterioration caused by THC is cumulative and permanent. If you doubt the long term mental effects of marijuana use, just take a good look at the 44th President of the United States. I rest my case.
So is marijuana use a victimless crime, as its promoters contend? The convenience store from which Michael Brown stole cigars to make "blunts" might argue with that contention, as might Darren Wilson, the peace officer who confronted the hopped up teenager immediately following the robbery. And how about the innocent drivers and passengers who are killed or injured by the pot head who gets behind the wheel in his physically and mentally impaired condition?
Marijuana is to America what opium was to China in the 19th century. It saps its victims of the mental and motivational ability to contribute to society and renders them wards of the state, making all of us taxpayers victims. And so far as freeing up the police is concerned, I would suggest the opposite is true. Cleaning up marijuana caused auto accidents and investigating and solving robberies and murders perpetrated by the Travon Martins and De'Marquis Elkins, who turn to crime to support their habit, will reduce police ability to tend to the needs of law abiding citizens. If you doubt that, visit an inner city police station, such as the Englewood station (District 7) on W. 63rd Street on the South side of Chicago.
To legalize or not to legalize? You decide. At least, now you have the facts.