News That Goes Against The Political Grain

Fox News posted an article today about the impact of marijuana on the adolescent brain.

The article reports:

Two health professionals penned an op-ed in The New York Times on Sunday that despite society’s shift on marijuana use, it does not change the fact that the drug is not safe for high school and college students.

Kenneth L. Davis, the president and chief executive of the Mount Sinai Health System, and Mary Jeanne Kreek, the head of Laboratory of the Biology of Addictive Diseases at Rockefeller University, cited studies that show a “deleterious impact on cognitive development in adolescents.”

The column said marijuana use can impair “executive function, processing speed, memory, attention span and concentration.” They said the explanation is simple: the adolescent brain is still vulnerable “especially the prefrontal cortex.”

“The chemical in marijuana responsible for producing mood elevation and relaxation, THC, interferes with the exchange of information between neurons,” they wrote in, “Marijuana Damages Young Brains.”

Davis and Kreek penned the column in response to New York and New Jersey considering legalizing marijuana for those over 21.

Marijuana is not as harmless as it is being made out to be. In October 2018, I posted an article about a man who had begun using marijuana is his 20’s and became addicted to the drug.

The article reported:

There’s a reason that Alcoholics Anonymous started in 1935, two years after the end of Prohibition. Alcohol abuse became rampant, and the country almost drank itself off the rails. Will the same thing happen with marijuana?

Marijuana isn’t alcohol or an opioid. You can’t die from an overdose. It doesn’t really evince physical cravings. So is it better to call my problem marijuana “dependence”? Does it matter?

Cannabis should be legal, just as alcohol should be legal. But marijuana addiction exists, and it almost wrecked my life. If you have a problem, you are not alone.

I am not convinced marijuana should be legal. I think we have more Americans addicted to marijuana than we realize.

Legislation That Will Be Harmful To Americans

Yesterday The Hill reported that Senator Cory Booker has introduced a bill in the Senate to legalize marijuana nationwide. The bill, S 597, is listed at Congress.gov, but the listing as of now does not include either the text of the bill or a summary of the bill.

The Hill reports:

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) introduced a bill Thursday to legalize marijuana across the country.

The 2020 presidential hopeful has made criminal justice reform and social justice issues central to his campaign and is framing the marijuana legalization bill as such.

“The War on Drugs has not been a war on drugs, it’s been a war on people, and disproportionately people of color and low-income individuals,” Booker said in a press release announcing the legislation. “The Marijuana Justice Act seeks to reverse decades of this unfair, unjust, and failed policy by removing marijuana from the list of controlled substances and making it legal at the federal level.”

A House version of the bill was introduced by Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), who is co-chair of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus.

The bill, known as the Marijuana Justice Act, would remove marijuana from the federal list of controlled substances, where it is currently a Schedule I drug in the same class with heroin and LSD.

In case you think this is a wonderful idea, please read the following article posted on this site on January 26, 2019. Marijuana is not a harmless substance. The main reason for the push for legalization is the money involved. As states lose tax money from the sale of tobacco products, they can make up that loss by taxing marijuana sales. Just as tobacco proved harmful to public health, marijuana will prove detrimental to public health as well.

The article concludes:

Several of Booker’s most prominent challengers for the Democratic presidential nomination from the Senate are co-sponsors on the bill, including Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).

Ten states as well as Washington, D.C., have already legalized the recreational use of marijuana, with many more states legalizing its medicinal use.

Booker’s bill would also incentivize states to loosen their marijuana laws by using federal funds.

From the rightwinggranny.com article cited above:

After an exhaustive review, the National Academy of Medicine found in 2017 that “cannabis use is likely to increase the risk of developing schizophrenia and other psychoses; the higher the use, the greater the risk.” Also that “regular cannabis use is likely to increase the risk for developing social anxiety disorder.”

…These new patterns of use have caused problems with the drug to soar. In 2014, people who had diagnosable cannabis use disorder, the medical term for marijuana abuse or addiction, made up about 1.5 percent of Americans. But they accounted for eleven percent of all the psychosis cases in emergency rooms—90,000 cases, 250 a day, triple the number in 2006. In states like Colorado, emergency room physicians have become experts on dealing with cannabis-induced psychosis.

Is legalizing marijuana in the best interest of Americans?

It Really Isn’t Safe

I wonder why the political class seems to be intent on the legalization of marijuana. I realize that I am an old person, but I really can’t see one thing that allowing everyone over 18 (which of course means many people under 18) to smoke marijuana adds to our social fabric. In fact, it may actually destroy our social fabric.

Yesterday the U.K. Mail posted a story about a twenty-year study into the effects of marijuana. It wasn’t good news.

The highlights of the study:

  • One in six teenagers who regularly smoke the drug become dependent on it,
  • Cannabis doubles the risk of developing psychotic disorders, including schizophrenia,
  • Cannabis users do worse at school. Heavy use in adolescence appears to impair intellectual development
  • One in ten adults who regularly smoke the drug become dependent on it and those who use it are more likely to go on to use harder drugs,
  • Driving after smoking cannabis doubles the risk of a car crash, a risk which increases substantially if the driver has also had a drink,
  • Smoking it while pregnant reduces the baby’s birth weight.

This does not sound like the impact of a ‘harmless’ substance.

The article further reports:

But his (Professor Hall, a professor of addiction policy at King’s College London) main finding is that regular use, especially among teenagers, leads to long-term mental health problems and addiction.

‘The important point I am trying to make is that people can get into difficulties with cannabis use, particularly if they get into daily use over a longer period,’ he said. ‘There is no doubt that heavy users experience a withdrawal syndrome as with alcohol and heroin.

‘Rates of recovery from cannabis dependence among those seeking treatment are similar to those for alcohol.’

Mark Winstanley, of the charity Rethink Mental Illness, said: ‘Too often cannabis is wrongly seen as a safe drug, but as this review shows, there is a clear link with psychosis and schizophrenia, especially for teenagers.

I don’t know what the motive of the politicians who are pushing for the legalization of marijuana is, but it is time for someone to be a grown-up and say no. I don’t think we need to send marijuana users to jail, but I think we need to set a goal of helping them withdraw from the drug. The use of marijuana, particularly in young adults will have permanent negative effects on our society.

The Result Of Doing The ‘Popular’ Thing

Colorado legalized marijuana in 2012. They are reaping in tons of revenue as a result, but what is the actual cost? Today The Daily Signal posted an article about seven negative results of the legalization of marijuana.

The article lists some of the negative impacts of legal marijuana:

1. The majority of DUI drug arrests involve marijuana and 25 to 40 percent were marijuana alone.

2. In 2012, 10.47 percent of Colorado youth ages 12 to 17 were considered current marijuana users compared to 7.55 percent nationally. Colorado ranked fourth in the nation, and was 39 percent higher than the national average.

3. Drug-related student suspensions/expulsions increased 32 percent from school years 2008-09 through 2012-13, the vast majority were for marijuana violations.

4. In 2012, 26.81 percent of college age students were considered current marijuana users compared to 18.89 percent nationally, which ranks Colorado third in the nation and 42 percent above the national average.

5. In 2013, 48.4 percent of Denver adult arrestees tested positive for marijuana, which is a 16 percent increase from 2008.

6. From 2011 through 2013 there was a 57 percent increase in marijuana-related emergency room visits.

7. Hospitalizations related to marijuana has increased 82 percent since 2008.

This information is from a new report by the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area entitled “The Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado: The Impact.”

Do you love your children enough to oppose the legalization of marijuana for recreational use?

 

A Man Who Is Making A Difference

Worcester County Massachusetts Sheriff Lewis G. Evangelides was elected to office in 2010. After learning that roughly 90 percent of the 1,100 inmates at the Worcester County Jail got there because of drug and alcohol addiction, Sheriff Evangelides began the Face2Face program to help prevent substance abuse. Over the past three years this program has allowed 100,000 students in Central Massachusetts  to see the physical effects and hear a debunking of the myths of opioids, alcohol, marijuana and other drugs.

The Telegram & Gazette posted an article yesterday about the Face2Face program.

The article reports:

Mr. Evangelides told the students that they were members of “Generation Rx,” reflecting the rapid growth in abuse of prescription painkillers such as OxyContin, Percocet and Vicodin over the last decade. According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, in 2010 nearly as many youths tried prescription painkillers for the first time as tried marijuana.

Instead of the bring-your-own-bottle drinking parties of many middle-aged parents’ youth, high school and middle school students today go to “Skittle parties,” where they bring pills they’ve procured from medicine cabinets, Mr. Evangelides said. The practice is also known as “pharming” or “trail mixing.”

“Young people don’t even think they’re real drugs and they’ll send you to places you wouldn’t dream you’d go,” Mr. Evangelides said, as he showed video footage of the 24/7 monitoring and lack of amenities such as toilet seats that jail inmates live with.

“None of you are thinking that if you pop a Perc or an Oxy or Vicodin, you’d end up addicted,” he continued. “No one is going to offer you that Oxy and tell you, after a while you’re going to need three, six, 10 (pills), and 80 milligrams of Oxy costs $80 … and a bag of heroin is cheaper than a six-pack. You go right from that pill to that needle.”

He also exploded myths about popular club drugs such as “Molly,” a supposedly pure form of Ecstasy. Citing two deaths in one week last year of New Hampshire students who overdosed on the drug, Mr. Evangelides said, “There is no such thing as a safe dose of Molly.”

Even marijuana, which many baby boomer parents consider relatively safe, causes brain, behavioral and physical damage similar to that caused by alcohol and other drugs.

Police Chief Alan Gordon said before the program: “We have a heroin problem. We have opiates. We just did a drug search here last week and had two hits of marijuana. We’ve had overdoses.

The medical benefits of marijuana can be obtained in ways other than smoking it. The move toward legalization is a smokescreen and will have a seriously negative impact on our children and teenagers. If you believe that we need to legalize medical marijuana, take a look at the advertisements in the Sunday papers in California which promote doctors who will write prescriptions for the drug for anything from headaches to lack of appetite.

Thank God for public servants such as Sheriff Evangelides who are willing to tell our children the truth about marijuana and other seemingly harmless drugs and to show them the results of recreational drug use.

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Just Because It’s Legal Doesn’t Mean That It Is Safe

I will admit I really don’t know much about marijuana. I never smoked it, and the only contact I have ever had with a heavy marijuana user was a high school student who probably changed his life for the worse because of his marijuana use. It didn’t kill him, and he didn’t move on to other drugs, but it definitely impacted his life in a negative way. He was a very smart and gifted person who I don’t believe ever even approached his potential. Eventually he became a Christian and put the drugs behind him, but I am convinced that they took a heavy toll.

There are debatable risks of marijuana, and there are some risks that are not debatable. Newsbusters posted an article yesterday about the fact that less than 10 percent of legal marijuana is tested for substances that may be harmful. Some of the things that have been found when marijuana has been tested are molds, mildew, e-coli.

The article reports:

Reporter Barry Petersen talked to a biologist who tests pot. After asking her what could be in the newly legalized drug, Gennifer Murray responded, “We have found molds, mildew, e-coli.” She informed, “…What you can die from is contaminated cannabis.”According to Murray, less than ten percent of legalized marijuana in the state is tested.

Why are state legislators so anxious to put the people of their states at risk by legalizing marijuana? It really doesn’t make sense.

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Upside Down Logic At Work

On Wednesday Bill Bennett and Christopher Beach posted an article at Politico about the legalization of marijuana. The article points out the contradiction of a liberal philosophy that wants to legalize marijuana while banning large sodas, sugary foods, trans fat, smoking tobacco, etc.

The article points out:

In his recent New Yorker interview, President Obama remarked, “I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life.” But then he added, “I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol.” Of the legalization in Colorado and Washington—never mind the unresolved conflict between state and federal law—he said, “it’s important for it to go forward.”

Got that? The same president who signed into law a tough federal anti-cigarette smoking bill in 2009 now supports marijuana legalization.

The article concludes:

What explains this obvious paradox? Do these liberals think that marijuana is somehow less harmful than a Big Gulp soda or a bucket of fried chicken? It’s hard to believe that’s the case, given the vast amount of social data and medical science on the dangers of marijuana.

Marijuana is destructive, particularly when used by teenagers. Does the people who want to make it legal believe teenagers will not be able to get it and smoke it? That hasn’t worked real well with either cigarettes or alcohol. Most of us probably know a teenager who used pot and paid a price later on–either in his ability to learn, moving on to other drugs, or side effects from some of the things added to the marijuana. Are we willing to make this drug easier for teenagers to obtain? This sounds like a bunch of 60’s hippies who are finally in control wanting to mainstream their counterculture. This is not good for our children, and it is not good for our society.

 

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If You Are Going To Set A Really Bad Example, At Least Get Your Facts Right

Today’s Washington Times posted a story about President Obama’s latest claims about marijuana. The President recently stated that marijuana is no worse than cigarettes or alcohol. His statement is in direct contradiction to statements by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

The article reports:

And as reported by the government’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, adolescent use of marijuana does something that alcohol does not; it causes permanent brain damage, including lowering of I.Q.

Taxpayers have spent billions of dollars warning about drugs, often about marijuana, but these efforts were dramatically undercut by the president’s comments.

As President, President Obama has a responsibility to set an example. After hearing his statement, one wonders how he would react if he caught his daughters smoking marijuana.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. There were a number of statements regarding marijuana in the interview President Obama gave to the New Yorker magazine that simply are not true. The misinformation in the article could prove to be damaging to America‘s youth. How many lives will be ruined by the belief that there is no danger in smoking marijuana?Enhanced by Zemanta

Common Sense From Patrick Kennedy

Yes, you read that right. Patrick Kennedy, former Congressman from Rhode Island, has started Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), a group to fight the increasing legalization of marijuana.

Accuracy in Media posted an article yesterday showing some of the reporting on the new group::

The paper (The Washington Post) said Kennedy wants “to shift the debate from legalization to prevention and treatment—despite what appears to be a growing social acceptance of the drug.”

That “growing social acceptance” is being driven by the drug-friendly media, the pro-drug entertainment industry, and a dope lobby led by the Drug Policy Alliance that is mostly funded by billionaires such as George Soros.

I don’t know a lot about marijuana–I am so old that there were no drugs in the schools when I was in high school. The general concept of a drug addict in the early 1960’s was someone with a needle injecting drugs, and there was no way that was socially acceptable. However, I have been exposed to teenagers and adults who have used marijuana, and I can honestly say that I have never seen anyone whose life improved due to drug use. I am not convinced that we truly understand the effect of marijuana on the human body–long term or short term.

The article further reports:

Kennedy’s involvement follows other experts who have been discussing marijuana’s threat. Mental health expert Clayton Cramer tells Accuracy in Media, “The studies that have been done on the subject clearly demonstrate not just a correlation between mental illness and marijuana use, but a causal connection.”

However, the pro-marijuana movement is on the move, with the state of Oregon sinking so low as to authorize the use of “medical marijuana” for a 7-year-old child with leukemia. The child’s father, who is divorced from the girl’s mother, reported the marijuana use to child welfare officials and said that he found the little girl “stoned out of her mind.”

The prospect of Patrick Kennedy’s involvement gives hope to those who believe the U.S. has been surrendering the war on drugs.

It is good news that Patrick Kennedy has taken up this cause. Hopefully we can stop the legalization train before we become a nation of narcissists smoking pot to avoid facing reality.

I would like to mention something that I noticed on a visit to California, where medical marijuana is legal. The last two pages of the Sunday newspaper were filled with advertisements from doctors stating that they prescribed marijuana for headaches, digestive problems, etc. It was obvious from the ads that all you had to do if you wanted to smoke marijuana legally was go to one of these doctors and complain that you had a headache. In states where marijuana has actually been legalized, it is not even necessary to visit a doctor, but in California, a doctor’s visit is necessary before you can legally smoke pot.

I rather doubt that increasing drug use is an indicator of a healthy society. The obvious questions here is, “Who profits by making marijuana legal?” I don’t have the answer to that questions, but I suspect it would explain a lot.

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