Pot is less harmful than alcohol from both a biological and phycological perspective. The immediate effects are more moderate than alcohol and stoned driving (although a terrible and selfish choice) is not as bad as drunk driving. Smokers (who have abstained from usage for 1 month) and nonsmokers have been shown to test similiarly on IQ tests, except in cases of chronic marijuana abuse (where the IQ levels were still very close to that of nonsmokers). Both drugs used responsibly have little to no long term effects. Additionally, arguing that DUI driving will increase dramatically is most likely overblown speculation as this already occurs (and I condemn the actions of those stupid enough to engage in DUIs) and, if you look at usage figures, prohibition hasnt been effective at all in curtailing usage. If marijuana is treated like alcohol (legally and socially) and the public is educated on the acute and long term effects I believe that it could easily be integrated into American society.
-Edit- I really want to find someone against legalization and have a real debate. Please post if you are in any sense even skeptical of legalization.
Well, my burning of every single joint, leaf, and seed of marijuana in the middle of new york city all at once would be my ultimate tribute to human shortmindedness! At first, everybody would love me for it, as the city flies through the stratosphere. Then, as it comes back down, people would realize that theres no more pot, and hate me. And dont say you steal some seeds and start an extremely profitable pot ring, because i have killer robots guarding every square inch RAWR! Why does this represent shortmindedness? I'm sure you can figure that out, this is gonna get text heavy :eek:
This shortmindedness is related to things like driving. People'll speed and run red lights to get home early, get to their kids school to pick the lil bastards up, to get to church on time, etc. They'll even speed, pass you without signaling, and practically ram your ass into the curb to get to a RED LIGHT before you. Yet, they dont seem to realize that their life could end in a single instant, and what would it be for? A few minutes of the rest of their now terminated lives.
Why pot? Why not =p I'm tired of hearing damn nearly every gamer gloating about his pot smoking habits (be they existing or fabricated, 90% probably the latter). Of course, destroying all of it would probably turn that sheepy preoccupation into raw hatred of me. They'd be all "Man.. that hostage guy like totally fried all the pot.. lets go beat him with sticks or somethin". But, in time, people would move onto other drugs, campaigning to legalize them in their communities. "Maaan, smack is like.. 200% less bad than beer! Smack dont neva hurt nobody!"
I *know* i'm gonna get flamed for this :p
Since when was the thread about gamers and their smoking habits. I use it responsibly , but I'd agree with you that every gamer, be them 9 or 19 thinks they're bad ass by stating that they're smoking a fatty. I for one couldn't give a shit if you're doing coke off your boyfriend/s grundle. Just keep it to yourself, its your body and your choice. If you **** it up w/ hard drugs then its your fault, youve made a moronic choice, and hopefully the user will learn from it.
I'm tired of hearing damn nearly every gamer gloating about his pot smoking habits (be they existing or fabricated, 90% probably the latter).
:lol: I thought I was the only one alive that found that annoying. :dance: [/COLOR]
Sorry, didn't catch your post about the formal debate till after the fact ^^; I really have no position on the matter, i'm just sick of hearing people going on and on about it. But for sake of sport, i'll put my grossly mis-informed brain on the "Opposed" team.
True, the benefits of legalizing pot that you mentioned would probably become a reality; But as it stands, theres too much opposition in ecomony and general public mentality. In the economic department, you have to consider WHERE the drug comes from. Predominantly, it is smuggled into, not grown in, the United States. You know America though; if it ain't american, we dont want it. (Take the Concorde Jet, for example). Also, some (not all) of the sources are rather "unsavory" characters, and we dont want to promote their business. The main problem I see here is that since such a large industry would exist OUTSIDE of the market, the US wouldnt be able to tax it like they do cigarettes (and in the event of pot legalization, Marlboro would probably be shittin kittens as pot would likely be cheaper than tobacco, unless the US imposed a bunch of import taxes on it beforehand).
As for general public mentality, take a look at some of the (quite frankly retarded) commercials. People who dont support pot believe these things happen, and adamantly label it a lethal substance; "a menace to society gawdamnit!". Then of course all the hard-wired idiots who wouldnt change their opinion if their GOD(S) told them to nag on and on about how terrible it is, and show some kinda video of some biker that feel off his bike under the influence (but fail to mention that he was running for his life from a gang of pre-teen bandits armed with uzis).
I was watching TV while I wrote this, and still am, so i dont feel like editting it :lol:
If it were to be legal a huge industry would grow (no pun intended) within the US. It would be US regulated (thus free of harmful contaminents) and there is no doubt in my mind that the weed the US would buy would be domestic. I believe that this new, legal industry would help the economy tremendously. Additionally, most weed comes from Canada but tons and tons of it are domestic (marijuana consistently ranks within the top 5 American cash crops--- Take that prohbition :)). I know that most politicians know little about the benefits of legalization and that legalization will not occur particularly soon but it is the youth's responsibility to become educated and coerce or even become politicians and spread facts rather than the pot bull shit propaganda spread by the government. Pro-legalization sentiment has grown with the the pot education of America and hopefully this will continue, despite the billions of dollars we put into the drug war and the thousands and thousands of people in prison for marijuana related crimes (the prison system is damn crowded- legalization would clear out many cells). Prohibition didn't work with alcohol and it sure as hell isn't working with marijuana.
-BTW- I've heard, but cannot confirm, that Marlboro actually has certain patents and plans of action if marijuana were to become legal. You can try looking it up online (might not be Marlboro or might just be a rumor).
YOU know im going to have to put this up even though im not going to go any farther into this conversation.
Effects on the Brain
Scientists have learned a great deal about how THC acts in the brain to produce its many effects. When someone smokes marijuana, THC rapidly passes from the lungs into the bloodstream, which carries the chemical to organs throughout the body, including the brain.
In the brain, THC connects to specific sites called cannabinoid receptors on nerve cells and influences the activity of those cells. Some brain areas have many cannabinoid receptors; others have few or none. Many cannabinoid receptors are found in the parts of the brain that influence pleasure, memory, thought, concentration, sensory and time perception, and coordinated movement(5).
The short-term effects of marijuana use can include problems with memory and learning; distorted perception; difficulty in thinking and problem solving; loss of coordination; and increased heart rate. Research findings for long-term marijuana use indicate some changes in the brain similar to those seen after long-term use of other major drugs of abuse. For example, cannabinoid (THC or synthetic forms of THC) withdrawal in chronically exposed animals leads to an increase in the activation of the stress-response system(6) and changes in the activity of nerve cells containing dopamine(7). Dopamine neurons are involved in the regulation of motivation and reward, and are directly or indirectly affected by all drugs of abuse.
Effects on the Heart
One study has indicated that a user’s risk of heart attack more than quadruples in the first hour after smoking marijuana(8). The researchers suggest that such an effect might occur from marijuana’s effects on blood pressure and heart rate and reduced oxygen-carrying capacity of blood.
Effects on the Lungs
A study of 450 individuals found that people who smoke marijuana frequently but do not smoke tobacco have more health problems and miss more days of work than nonsmokers(9). Many of the extra sick days among the marijuana smokers in the study were for respiratory illnesses.
Even infrequent use can cause burning and stinging of the mouth and throat, often accompanied by a heavy cough. Someone who smokes marijuana regularly may have many of the same respiratory problems that tobacco smokers do, such as daily cough and phlegm production, more frequent acute chest illness, a heightened risk of lung infections, and a greater tendency to obstructed airways(10).
Cancer of the respiratory tract and lungs may also be promoted by marijuana smoke(11). A study comparing 173 cancer patients and 176 healthy individuals produced strong evidence that smoking marijuana increases the likelihood of developing cancer of the head or neck, and the more marijuana smoked the greater the increase(12). A statistical analysis of the data suggested that marijuana smoking doubled or tripled the risk of these cancers.
Marijuana use has the potential to promote cancer of the lungs and other parts of the respiratory tract because it contains irritants and carcinogens(13). In fact, marijuana smoke contains 50 to 70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than does tobacco smoke(14). It also produces high levels of an enzyme that converts certain hydrocarbons into their carcinogenic form—levels that may accelerate the changes that ultimately produce malignant cells(15). Marijuana users usually inhale more deeply and hold their breath longer than tobacco smokers do, which increases the lungs’ exposure to carcinogenic smoke. These facts suggest that, puff for puff, smoking marijuana may increase the risk of cancer more than smoking tobacco.
Other Health Effects
Some of marijuana's adverse health effects may occur because THC impairs the immune system’s ability to fight off infectious diseases and cancer. In laboratory experiments that exposed animal and human cells to THC or other marijuana ingredients, the normal disease-preventing reactions of many of the key types of immune cells were inhibited(16). In other studies, mice exposed to THC or related substances were more likely than unexposed mice to develop bacterial infections and tumors(17,18).
Effects of Heavy Marijuana Use on Learning and Social Behavior
Depression(19), anxiety(20), and personality disturbances(21) are all associated with marijuana use. Research clearly demonstrates that marijuana use has potential to cause problems in daily life or make a person’s existing problems worse. Because marijuana compromises the ability to learn and remember information, the more a person uses marijuana the more he or she is likely to fall behind in accumulating intellectual, job, or social skills. Moreover, research has shown that marijuana’s adverse impact on memory and learning can last for days or weeks after the acute effects of the drug wear off(22,23).
Students who smoke marijuana get lower grades and are less likely to graduate from high school, compared to their non-smoking peers(24,25,26,27). In one study, researchers compared marijuana-smoking and non-smoking 12th-graders’ scores on standardized tests of verbal and mathematical skills. Although all of the students had scored equally well in 4th grade, the marijuana smokers’ scores were significantly lower in 12th grade(28).
A study of 129 college students found that, for heavy users of marijuana (those who smoked the drug at least 27 of the preceding 30 days), critical skills related to attention, memory, and learning were significantly impaired even after they had not used the drug for at least 24 hours(29). The heavy marijuana users in the study had more trouble sustaining and shifting their attention and in registering, organizing, and using information than did the study participants who had used marijuana no more than 3 of the previous 30 days. As a result, someone who smokes marijuana once daily may be functioning at a reduced intellectual level all of the time.
More recently, the same researchers showed that the ability of a group of long-term heavy marijuana users to recall words from a list remained impaired for a week after quitting, but returned to normal within 4 weeks(30). An implication of this finding is that some cognitive abilities may be restored in individuals who quit smoking marijuana, even after long-term heavy use.
Workers who smoke marijuana are more likely than their coworkers to have problems on the job. Several studies associate workers' marijuana smoking with increased absences, tardiness, accidents, workers' compensation claims, and job turnover. A study of municipal workers found that those who used marijuana on or off the job reported more "withdrawal behaviors"—such as leaving work without permission, daydreaming, spending work time on personal matters, and shirking tasks—that adversely affect productivity and morale(31).
Effects on Pregnancy
Research has shown that babies born to women who used marijuana during their pregnancies display altered responses to visual stimuli, increased tremulousness, and a high-pitched cry, which may indicate problems with neurological development(32). During infancy and preschool years, marijuana-exposed children have been observed to have more behavioral problems and poorer performance on tasks of visual perception, language comprehension, sustained attention, and memory(33,34). In school, these children are more likely to exhibit deficits in decision-making skills, memory, and the ability to remain attentive(35,36,37).
Long-term marijuana use can lead to addiction for some people; that is, they use the drug compulsively even though it often interferes with family, school, work, and recreational activities. Drug craving and withdrawal symptoms can make it hard for long-term marijuana smokers to stop using the drug. People trying to quit report irritability, sleeplessness, and anxiety(38). They also display increased aggression on psychological tests, peaking approximately one week after the last use of the drug(39).
haha Zab who is gonna read all that?? :lol:
you know i had to put it up there....:D , i dont really have an opinion i just wanted to put up something to add to the convo... :D