The Marlboro Man is LYING!!! (on Video)

Tobacco companies spend 26 million dollars a day on ads – which they say have no effect on convincing new smokers to pick up the habit…

Alcohol ads cost the industry 3 billion dollars per year – the majority targeted at young drinkers. Why do 80% of beer company websites use cartoons and rock star promotions, while only 10% of wine websites do…? Could it be that brewers are after that 5 billion dollar a year underage college binge drinking market?

Interesting facts from a thought provoking short video piece that discusses how alcohol and tobacco advertising has educated generations of Americans on the 2 most widely used drugs.

You’ll never look at the Marlboro Man the same way again.

6 minutes well spent.

 

Tobacco companies spend 26 million dollars a day on ads – which they say have no effect on convincing new smokers to pick up the habit…

Alcohol ads cost the industry 3 billion dollars per year – the majority targeted at young drinkers. Why do 80% of beer company websites use cartoons and rock star promotions, while only 10% of wine websites do…? Could it be that brewers are after that 5 billion dollar a year underage college binge drinking market?

Interesting facts from a thought provoking short video piece that discusses how alcohol and tobacco advertising has educated generations of Americans on the 2 most widely used drugs.

You’ll never look at the Marlboro Man the same way again.

6 minutes well spent.

 

Which Drug is Most Addictive? A List Ranking the Addictive Properties of Commonly Abused Drugs

Surfed across this today, and thought I would pass it along. It is a list ranking the addictive properties of various drugs. Drugs are ranked based on "how easy is it to get addicted?" and on "how tough is it to quit?"

These two questions were given to a community of addiction experts, who ranked each drug on a variety of measures. The scores below reflect the ranking scores offered by these addiction experts. The numbers are only relative opinions, and are based only on the experience and expertise of experts in the field. In other words – these are just opinion scores, but interesting none the less.

The Addiction Scores of Illicit or Abused Drugs

  • 100 – Nicotine
  • 99 – Ice, Glass (Methamphetamine smoked)
  • 98 – Crack
  • 93 – Crystal Meth (Methamphetamine injected)
  • 85 – Valium (Diazepam)
  • 83 – Quaalude (Methaqualone)
  • 82 – Seconal (Secobarbital)
  • 81 – Alcohol
  • 80 – Heroin
  • 78 – Crank (Amphetamine taken nasally)
  • 72 – Cocaine
  • 68 – Caffeine
  • 57 – PCP (Phencyclidine)
  • 21 – Marijuana
  • 20 – Ecstasy (MDMA)
  • 18 – Psilocybin Mushrooms
  • 18 – LSD
  • 18 – Mescaline

Research was conducted by John Hastings, and the full text article can be found at "In Health" journal.

Surfed across this today, and thought I would pass it along. It is a list ranking the addictive properties of various drugs. Drugs are ranked based on "how easy is it to get addicted?" and on "how tough is it to quit?"

These two questions were given to a community of addiction experts, who ranked each drug on a variety of measures. The scores below reflect the ranking scores offered by these addiction experts. The numbers are only relative opinions, and are based only on the experience and expertise of experts in the field. In other words – these are just opinion scores, but interesting none the less.

The Addiction Scores of Illicit or Abused Drugs

  • 100 – Nicotine
  • 99 – Ice, Glass (Methamphetamine smoked)
  • 98 – Crack
  • 93 – Crystal Meth (Methamphetamine injected)
  • 85 – Valium (Diazepam)
  • 83 – Quaalude (Methaqualone)
  • 82 – Seconal (Secobarbital)
  • 81 – Alcohol
  • 80 – Heroin
  • 78 – Crank (Amphetamine taken nasally)
  • 72 – Cocaine
  • 68 – Caffeine
  • 57 – PCP (Phencyclidine)
  • 21 – Marijuana
  • 20 – Ecstasy (MDMA)
  • 18 – Psilocybin Mushrooms
  • 18 – LSD
  • 18 – Mescaline

Research was conducted by John Hastings, and the full text article can be found at "In Health" journal.

How’s Your Drinking? How to Know if You Have a Drinking Problem

Do you have a drinking problem? Are you an alcoholic? How can you know, and what do these terms mean anyway?

If you go to the doctor, and she says you have cancer – shows you the MRI pictures, and you see a tumor – you believe it, and start thinking almost immediately about how to get better. It’s black and white, cut and dry – and for the most, the decision to get treatment is an easy one.

Not to belittle the challenge of cancer, but – if only it were that easy for someone with a drinking or drug problem!

People diagnosed with cancer can understand their diagnosis, most will accept it as accurate, and most will accept of the need for treatment. People don’t tend to understand the true meaning of terms such as alcoholic, substance abuser or chemically dependant – although they tend to have a misguided idea in their heads about what these things mean. And they won’t tend to believe a doctor, or anyone else, if they are told that they suffer the disease of addiction.

The term alcoholic is not a medically accepted diagnosis, yet has wide cultural connotations and understanding. It’s a tough and problematic word. People don’t tend to understand it, yet think they do, and since two hallmarks of the disease are delusion and denial – it’s all too easy to self-define alcoholism in such a way so that you don’t meet the criteria – no matter how bad your problem becomes.

For example

You believe that alcoholics are homeless bums – and since you still work, ergo you are not an alcoholic, no matter what drinking is doing to other areas of your life.

The addicted mind, as a defense mechanism preserving the drinking, defines alcoholism as whatever you are not. And that tricky addicted mind can shift those definitions as it needs to, always ensuring that your self-definition of "alcoholic" is anything but what you yourself are.

So Let’s Forget About the Word "Alcoholism"

Just for a second, let’s forget about the term alcoholism. It is a useful term, and understanding the disease of alcoholism can help you to get better, once on a road to recovery – but if you’re still drinking, don’t think you’re an alcoholic, but have a small nagging voice inside your head saying there’s a problem…lets look at things in a different way.

Do You Have a Drinking Problem?

People without drinking problems almost never experience problems because of their drinking. If drinking causes you some problems, in any area of your life, yet you still drink – then you have a drinking problem.

There – it’s as simple as that. If drinking causes you problems, you have a drinking problem. If you have a drinking problem, you should change your behaviors.

While drinking, we tend to associate with others that also drink. While drinking heavily, we associate with others that drink heavily – and we use our associates as a way to gauge our own problem. Not a great diagnostic technique, obviously, but it’s human nature to peer model, and it’s also a great defense mechanism for the addicted mind.

It is not normal to get drunk a lot. About half of Americans basically don’t drink at all.

Forget about comparing yourself to your friends. It’s tempting, but it doesn’t offer you any real insight into yourself. Keep it simple. If drinking is causing you any problems, you have a drinking problem.

Not sure?

Write it down. On a piece of paper, make two columns describing your drinking – one for benefits, and one for costs. Start with the benefits, and in the benefit column, write down anything and everything positive that you can think of about drinking.

You might say: It relaxes me I enjoy the taste of…. I enjoy socializing with friends at the bar.

Whatever, be thorough, and make a full list of everything good that you can think of about drinking. Now – do the same for costs, but this time, do it in a more structured way, and be honest – there is little point in the exercise of you are not being honest with yourself.

Firstly, write down how many drinks you have a week. No lying, is it, 20 – 50 – 150?

Photo: PescatelloHealth

Now think about health, and think of any influence your drinking has on your health. Has your drinking affected your weight, your fitness, your heart, your blood pressure, your liver, your energy or your mind? Do you think that if you keep drinking at the level you are drinking now, you will start to experience any health problems?

Social/Relationships

Has drinking ever caused you personal problems? Has it ever affected your relationship with your spouse, friends, children or family? Has your drinking ever caused you to miss an important social event? Would you like to see your children drink as much as you do? Would your spouse/mom/brother be happier if you drank less?

School/Career

Has your drinking ever caused you to perform poorly at work or school? Do you go to work with a hangover on a regular basis (more than once a month)? Do you perform as well at work when you are hung-over? Have you ever been noticed for being hung-over or drunk at work? Do you sometimes call in sick to work due to a hang-over? Would you be a better employee if you didn’t drink? Have you ever lost a job or been reprimanded due to alcohol?

Legal

Have you ever had any contact with law enforcement as a result of your drinking?

Now Take a Look

OK, that’s it. Now you should have two columns. What do your columns look like?

If you’re feeling really brave – have someone that knows you well complete the same "costs" exercise for you. See what problems they think your drinking is causing you. If you are a social drinker, with nothing to worry about – your "costs" column will be empty.

If that column aint’ empty – you have something to worry about.

Drinking should bring only pleasure – if it brings any kind of problem on a regular basis – and you don’t stop drinking, then you have a drinking problem, and you either need to quit on your own, or get some help so that you can. When self-diagnosing the problem, forget about the term alcoholic – and just decide if you have a drinking problem or not – and if you do – think about how much you are willing to sacrifice to keep on drinking.

 

Do you have a drinking problem? Are you an alcoholic? How can you know, and what do these terms mean anyway?

If you go to the doctor, and she says you have cancer – shows you the MRI pictures, and you see a tumor – you believe it, and start thinking almost immediately about how to get better. It’s black and white, cut and dry – and for the most, the decision to get treatment is an easy one.

Not to belittle the challenge of cancer, but – if only it were that easy for someone with a drinking or drug problem!

People diagnosed with cancer can understand their diagnosis, most will accept it as accurate, and most will accept of the need for treatment. People don’t tend to understand the true meaning of terms such as alcoholic, substance abuser or chemically dependant – although they tend to have a misguided idea in their heads about what these things mean. And they won’t tend to believe a doctor, or anyone else, if they are told that they suffer the disease of addiction.

The term alcoholic is not a medically accepted diagnosis, yet has wide cultural connotations and understanding. It’s a tough and problematic word. People don’t tend to understand it, yet think they do, and since two hallmarks of the disease are delusion and denial – it’s all too easy to self-define alcoholism in such a way so that you don’t meet the criteria – no matter how bad your problem becomes.

For example

You believe that alcoholics are homeless bums – and since you still work, ergo you are not an alcoholic, no matter what drinking is doing to other areas of your life.

The addicted mind, as a defense mechanism preserving the drinking, defines alcoholism as whatever you are not. And that tricky addicted mind can shift those definitions as it needs to, always ensuring that your self-definition of "alcoholic" is anything but what you yourself are.

So Let’s Forget About the Word "Alcoholism"

Just for a second, let’s forget about the term alcoholism. It is a useful term, and understanding the disease of alcoholism can help you to get better, once on a road to recovery – but if you’re still drinking, don’t think you’re an alcoholic, but have a small nagging voice inside your head saying there’s a problem…lets look at things in a different way.

Do You Have a Drinking Problem?

People without drinking problems almost never experience problems because of their drinking. If drinking causes you some problems, in any area of your life, yet you still drink – then you have a drinking problem.

There – it’s as simple as that. If drinking causes you problems, you have a drinking problem. If you have a drinking problem, you should change your behaviors.

While drinking, we tend to associate with others that also drink. While drinking heavily, we associate with others that drink heavily – and we use our associates as a way to gauge our own problem. Not a great diagnostic technique, obviously, but it’s human nature to peer model, and it’s also a great defense mechanism for the addicted mind.

It is not normal to get drunk a lot. About half of Americans basically don’t drink at all.

Forget about comparing yourself to your friends. It’s tempting, but it doesn’t offer you any real insight into yourself. Keep it simple. If drinking is causing you any problems, you have a drinking problem.

Not sure?

Write it down. On a piece of paper, make two columns describing your drinking – one for benefits, and one for costs. Start with the benefits, and in the benefit column, write down anything and everything positive that you can think of about drinking.

You might say: It relaxes me I enjoy the taste of…. I enjoy socializing with friends at the bar.

Whatever, be thorough, and make a full list of everything good that you can think of about drinking. Now – do the same for costs, but this time, do it in a more structured way, and be honest – there is little point in the exercise of you are not being honest with yourself.

Firstly, write down how many drinks you have a week. No lying, is it, 20 – 50 – 150?

Photo: PescatelloHealth

Now think about health, and think of any influence your drinking has on your health. Has your drinking affected your weight, your fitness, your heart, your blood pressure, your liver, your energy or your mind? Do you think that if you keep drinking at the level you are drinking now, you will start to experience any health problems?

Social/Relationships

Has drinking ever caused you personal problems? Has it ever affected your relationship with your spouse, friends, children or family? Has your drinking ever caused you to miss an important social event? Would you like to see your children drink as much as you do? Would your spouse/mom/brother be happier if you drank less?

School/Career

Has your drinking ever caused you to perform poorly at work or school? Do you go to work with a hangover on a regular basis (more than once a month)? Do you perform as well at work when you are hung-over? Have you ever been noticed for being hung-over or drunk at work? Do you sometimes call in sick to work due to a hang-over? Would you be a better employee if you didn’t drink? Have you ever lost a job or been reprimanded due to alcohol?

Legal

Have you ever had any contact with law enforcement as a result of your drinking?

Now Take a Look

OK, that’s it. Now you should have two columns. What do your columns look like?

If you’re feeling really brave – have someone that knows you well complete the same "costs" exercise for you. See what problems they think your drinking is causing you. If you are a social drinker, with nothing to worry about – your "costs" column will be empty.

If that column aint’ empty – you have something to worry about.

Drinking should bring only pleasure – if it brings any kind of problem on a regular basis – and you don’t stop drinking, then you have a drinking problem, and you either need to quit on your own, or get some help so that you can. When self-diagnosing the problem, forget about the term alcoholic – and just decide if you have a drinking problem or not – and if you do – think about how much you are willing to sacrifice to keep on drinking.

 

Know When to Say When…To Public Service Beer Ads

Beer companies, all heart, sometimes they care too much.

They worry about us, want us all to drive safe, talk to our kids on the dangers of drink and, gosh darn it, to know when to say when. I’m tired of it. Enough already…the shareholders deserve better!

  • What kind of business retard tries to stop underage drinking? Those kids are great customers. Underage drinkers forked out an estimated 5 billion last year! We need strong CEO’s with vision; marketing execs with the balls to come out and target kids explicitly. Get some furry mascots as brand symbols, talking bears or something – that would probably work…
  • "Know when to say when" – how’s that gonna’ make any money? The hardest drinking 10% chug down almost half of all the beer you can make (43%) – you’ve got to get those guys drinking more, or at least get more people drinking like them! Maybe run a few ads with good looking babes drinking beer and playing volleyball or something.
  • Think when you drink – There’s another profit stinker for you right there. 60% of all beer sold is drunk in binge quantities, hmm – if only we could keep people awake long enough to drink more in a session…HEY, I KNOW – WE COULD PUT CAFFEINE IN THE BEER!!!! Market it like an energy drink or something and kids would love it too!

Enough

For every one ad counseling responsible drinking, there are well over 200 promoting drinking. For every $1 spent on public health ads, $99 are spent on talking bears drinking Bud. Beer companies need young drinkers, they’d die without them. Profits rest almost entirely in the underage, and heavy to alcoholic use consumer – that’s the meat and potatoes of the market, and that’s who they want.

Beer companies just don’t make money by convincing people to drink less beer. We know it and it’s our job to stop them, or at least limit the harms they do; and by allowing them the odd public service ad slot, we allow a platform from which they shellac themselves with respectability. So let’s get rid of these ads, they don’t work anyway; studies have shown that consumers don’t find them effective or influential, and they may well do more harm than good.

Beer companies, all heart, sometimes they care too much.

They worry about us, want us all to drive safe, talk to our kids on the dangers of drink and, gosh darn it, to know when to say when. I’m tired of it. Enough already…the shareholders deserve better!

  • What kind of business retard tries to stop underage drinking? Those kids are great customers. Underage drinkers forked out an estimated 5 billion last year! We need strong CEO’s with vision; marketing execs with the balls to come out and target kids explicitly. Get some furry mascots as brand symbols, talking bears or something – that would probably work…
  • "Know when to say when" – how’s that gonna’ make any money? The hardest drinking 10% chug down almost half of all the beer you can make (43%) – you’ve got to get those guys drinking more, or at least get more people drinking like them! Maybe run a few ads with good looking babes drinking beer and playing volleyball or something.
  • Think when you drink – There’s another profit stinker for you right there. 60% of all beer sold is drunk in binge quantities, hmm – if only we could keep people awake long enough to drink more in a session…HEY, I KNOW – WE COULD PUT CAFFEINE IN THE BEER!!!! Market it like an energy drink or something and kids would love it too!

Enough

For every one ad counseling responsible drinking, there are well over 200 promoting drinking. For every $1 spent on public health ads, $99 are spent on talking bears drinking Bud. Beer companies need young drinkers, they’d die without them. Profits rest almost entirely in the underage, and heavy to alcoholic use consumer – that’s the meat and potatoes of the market, and that’s who they want.

Beer companies just don’t make money by convincing people to drink less beer. We know it and it’s our job to stop them, or at least limit the harms they do; and by allowing them the odd public service ad slot, we allow a platform from which they shellac themselves with respectability. So let’s get rid of these ads, they don’t work anyway; studies have shown that consumers don’t find them effective or influential, and they may well do more harm than good.

Eat Together as a Family. Save Your Kids From Drugs?

Photo: SuziJaneResearch by the National Center on Addiction and Substance abuse compared the drug and alcohol consumption patterns of teens that ate family dinners 5 or more times per week, with those that ate them 2 or less times per week, and the difference revealed is dramatic. Families that don’t often eat together have teen children that are:

300% more likely to smoke marijuana 250% more likely to smoke cigarettes 150% more likely to drink alcohol

Wow! What an easy way to make a real difference, in your teen’s life, and for the family as a whole. The study authors state that although the simple act of eating together as a family seems most important, the experience can be enhanced with conversation and by ensuring the TV is turned off throughout the meal.

Research continually demonstrates the influence of family and parental involvement on the likelihood of teens avoiding the troubles of drugs and alcohol. And this recent study shows just how easily parents can ensure they exert that influence. Make it fun for all, order a pizza if that’s what it takes, and sit down as a family, at the table. It’s worth it.

Photo: SuziJaneResearch by the National Center on Addiction and Substance abuse compared the drug and alcohol consumption patterns of teens that ate family dinners 5 or more times per week, with those that ate them 2 or less times per week, and the difference revealed is dramatic. Families that don’t often eat together have teen children that are:

300% more likely to smoke marijuana 250% more likely to smoke cigarettes 150% more likely to drink alcohol

Wow! What an easy way to make a real difference, in your teen’s life, and for the family as a whole. The study authors state that although the simple act of eating together as a family seems most important, the experience can be enhanced with conversation and by ensuring the TV is turned off throughout the meal.

Research continually demonstrates the influence of family and parental involvement on the likelihood of teens avoiding the troubles of drugs and alcohol. And this recent study shows just how easily parents can ensure they exert that influence. Make it fun for all, order a pizza if that’s what it takes, and sit down as a family, at the table. It’s worth it.

Don’t Enable…Do Help

I hear a lot of true sad stories about people who have had enough of addiction or alcoholism, finally want to get better, but who just don’t have the money they need to get into even the lower cost rehabs right away. They may be eligible for some subsidized care, but with waiting lists as long as two months, this is pretty far from ideal; and a story I get a lot is, "My family has had enough of me, and they won’t help me anymore".

Which I can understand! When we are using and abusing, we tend to do things that force our families away. We burn our bridges, lie, cheat and steal one too many times, and they just get fed up. And they don’t want to enable the abuse either!

And it’s true:

  • When they let us live rent free in the home, getting high in the basement, that doesn’t help us get better.
  • When they give us money for drugs or alcohol when we get desperate…that doesn’t much help either.

They are taught that the only way that they can truly help us to change our ways is to stop enabling, and to start giving a little tough love. And it’s true too, and tough love can help. But tough love gets a little too tough when we finally reach the point when we can no longer deny the extent of the problem, when we accept that things are out of control and when we realize that to have any chance at a better life; we are going to need some help.

When we reach that point and we come pleading for a bit of money for our treatment, turning us away is awfully hard, has nothing to do with enabling or otherwise and just keeps too many of us out of treatments that could really get us up out of the mess we’ve made of things.

We may not deserve it, but we’ll make it up to you once we’re better. You don’t have to give the money to us either, we can understand how that might make you feel a little uncomfortable…pay the treatment center directly.

You won’t regret it.

I hear a lot of true sad stories about people who have had enough of addiction or alcoholism, finally want to get better, but who just don’t have the money they need to get into even the lower cost rehabs right away. They may be eligible for some subsidized care, but with waiting lists as long as two months, this is pretty far from ideal; and a story I get a lot is, "My family has had enough of me, and they won’t help me anymore".

Which I can understand! When we are using and abusing, we tend to do things that force our families away. We burn our bridges, lie, cheat and steal one too many times, and they just get fed up. And they don’t want to enable the abuse either!

And it’s true:

  • When they let us live rent free in the home, getting high in the basement, that doesn’t help us get better.
  • When they give us money for drugs or alcohol when we get desperate…that doesn’t much help either.

They are taught that the only way that they can truly help us to change our ways is to stop enabling, and to start giving a little tough love. And it’s true too, and tough love can help. But tough love gets a little too tough when we finally reach the point when we can no longer deny the extent of the problem, when we accept that things are out of control and when we realize that to have any chance at a better life; we are going to need some help.

When we reach that point and we come pleading for a bit of money for our treatment, turning us away is awfully hard, has nothing to do with enabling or otherwise and just keeps too many of us out of treatments that could really get us up out of the mess we’ve made of things.

We may not deserve it, but we’ll make it up to you once we’re better. You don’t have to give the money to us either, we can understand how that might make you feel a little uncomfortable…pay the treatment center directly.

You won’t regret it.

4 Things Pot-Heads Say that Drive Me Nuts (A Sort of Pro Marijuana Rebuttal)

Medical marijuana

First of all, the whole medical marijuana thing drives me crazy. Fine, give marijuana to people with glaucoma if it helps them, cancer patients need a little pot, by all means they should have it; but there is a substantial difference between something being beneficial to certain people who are suffering from disease and good for one and all and their brother.

There’s this sort of smugness that I get a lot from marijuana proponents fighting for medical legalization, as if they were fighting some sort of battle for the greater good. I don’t believe it anyways, I just think they want to get stoned on legal weed…which is fine, but let’s drop this whole doing it for the AIDS patient’s thing.

It’s natural

OK what’s next, oh yeah, the whole it’s from the earth it’s natural it’s good for you line of reasoning. What’s up with that? Sure, smoking a natural herb may not be quite as harmful as sniffing gasoline, but just because things come from the earth doesn’t mean we should put them in our bodies. Opium is from a plant, but smoking a lot of opium never did anyone much good. Cyanide, that’s another one of natures goodies that never seems to make it into the whole, from the earth let’s smoke it line of reasoning. How about cobra venom…can’t get more natural than that.

Alcohol is worse

OK, number three on my list of grievances regards the whole comparison thing with alcohol.

Yes, I get it, alcohol is worse, and it’s legal too; the horror. Get over it already, alcohol isn’t good for you, it surely causes far more pain that marijuana ever will, and it’s far harder on the body as well; but once again, simply because alcohol is worse, doesn’t make marijuana good.

There is no law saying that you need to put any form of intoxicating substance in your body, it’s not as if we are dealing a necessary decision between two evils here. And about the whole alcohol being legal thing; governments would stop it if they could, but they can’t so they don’t. End of story.

Hemp

Yes yes, hemp is a wonderful thing, and I can’t wait until all of my shirts look as scratchy as yours. What’s the deal with marijuana smokers and hemp? They’re so infatuated with that weed they’re even going to wear it on their backs? OK I know hemp has a lot of promise for a great many things and I agree that it is pretty silly to restrict the growth of industrial hemp fibers, without any THC at all in them; but those clothes you’re wearing…I just can’t take you seriously in them

The legalization issue

So now you know where I stand on marijuana legalization…well you’re wrong; I think the money spent on enforcement of marijuana is absurd. I used to smoke marijuana, have since given it up, have friends that use heavily…whatever. It should be a personal decision, based on an awareness of the facts and issues surrounding the use of the drug, and wasting dollars far better destined to health care or education on rooting out plants and busting weed dealers makes no sense at all.

I don’t care as much about the issue since I no longer smoke and have nothing to fear from John Q Law, but even still, I’d like to see a legalization if only to prove that govt. policy makers have enough courage to do what most educated people believe needs doing, but remains such a political minefield.

And it may not help their case much, but I for one would respect the pot heads of the world far more if they’d just come out from behind their smokescreen (pun intended) of medical marijuana and scratchy shirts and all that, and just said "I like to get high, I’m not hurting anyone, get out of my darned business"

 

Medical marijuana

First of all, the whole medical marijuana thing drives me crazy. Fine, give marijuana to people with glaucoma if it helps them, cancer patients need a little pot, by all means they should have it; but there is a substantial difference between something being beneficial to certain people who are suffering from disease and good for one and all and their brother.

There’s this sort of smugness that I get a lot from marijuana proponents fighting for medical legalization, as if they were fighting some sort of battle for the greater good. I don’t believe it anyways, I just think they want to get stoned on legal weed…which is fine, but let’s drop this whole doing it for the AIDS patient’s thing.

It’s natural

OK what’s next, oh yeah, the whole it’s from the earth it’s natural it’s good for you line of reasoning. What’s up with that? Sure, smoking a natural herb may not be quite as harmful as sniffing gasoline, but just because things come from the earth doesn’t mean we should put them in our bodies. Opium is from a plant, but smoking a lot of opium never did anyone much good. Cyanide, that’s another one of natures goodies that never seems to make it into the whole, from the earth let’s smoke it line of reasoning. How about cobra venom…can’t get more natural than that.

Alcohol is worse

OK, number three on my list of grievances regards the whole comparison thing with alcohol.

Yes, I get it, alcohol is worse, and it’s legal too; the horror. Get over it already, alcohol isn’t good for you, it surely causes far more pain that marijuana ever will, and it’s far harder on the body as well; but once again, simply because alcohol is worse, doesn’t make marijuana good.

There is no law saying that you need to put any form of intoxicating substance in your body, it’s not as if we are dealing a necessary decision between two evils here. And about the whole alcohol being legal thing; governments would stop it if they could, but they can’t so they don’t. End of story.

Hemp

Yes yes, hemp is a wonderful thing, and I can’t wait until all of my shirts look as scratchy as yours. What’s the deal with marijuana smokers and hemp? They’re so infatuated with that weed they’re even going to wear it on their backs? OK I know hemp has a lot of promise for a great many things and I agree that it is pretty silly to restrict the growth of industrial hemp fibers, without any THC at all in them; but those clothes you’re wearing…I just can’t take you seriously in them

The legalization issue

So now you know where I stand on marijuana legalization…well you’re wrong; I think the money spent on enforcement of marijuana is absurd. I used to smoke marijuana, have since given it up, have friends that use heavily…whatever. It should be a personal decision, based on an awareness of the facts and issues surrounding the use of the drug, and wasting dollars far better destined to health care or education on rooting out plants and busting weed dealers makes no sense at all.

I don’t care as much about the issue since I no longer smoke and have nothing to fear from John Q Law, but even still, I’d like to see a legalization if only to prove that govt. policy makers have enough courage to do what most educated people believe needs doing, but remains such a political minefield.

And it may not help their case much, but I for one would respect the pot heads of the world far more if they’d just come out from behind their smokescreen (pun intended) of medical marijuana and scratchy shirts and all that, and just said "I like to get high, I’m not hurting anyone, get out of my darned business"