posted on May, 10 2007 @ 05:34 PM
I am currently a smoker, and have been for several years.
I can see many points on either side. Positive first:
Cannabis increases the horizons of your mind, allowing more creative and lateral thought. Also you aren't going to hurt anyone, it doesn't make you
more violent or incapable of driving a vehicle. Alcoholics can mess up their lives, which is far worse than a dimmed pot-head. It does have medicinal
benefits (a friend of mine shattered his legs, and after a while he ditched the Codiene in favour of cannabis - which he claimed worked better and he
was in a more normal mental state - coming from a heavy smoker though). It has been shown to be great for arthritis and MS as well.
However, most people when smoking it smoke tobacco as well, which isn't safe. It also produces a lot of tar when smoked which can have worse
short-term effects than smoking tobacco. This is compounded by the fact that the smoke isn't filtered. It also burns hotter causing damage to your
troat and lungs. Whilst it has been suggested by some that Cannabis fights lung cancer, I think this is ignoring the wealth of other physical health
issues which result from not treating your lungs too well...
It is not physically addictive, but it is habit forming and mentally addictive.
I have met VERY few (if not no) people who have permanently messed up their brains from drinking at a young age, whilst I have several friends whose
minds grow weaker by the day. My best friend from years ago became a bit skitzophrenic. No smoker can deny that it also messes up your short term
memory. Recent studies also indicates that it damages the part of you brain which controls suggestibility and addiction fighting, as well as the part
of your brain which prevents your from saying inappropriate things. I have noticed the latter in myself, and possibly the former.
Something that we have been unable to test properly is the effects of modern weed, now weighing in at ~20% THC, something like 10 times more powerful
than it used to be (not certain of that figure). This has been relatively recently so we have been unable to judge the long term affects of this
A 14 year old smoking 20%+ THC cannabis daily is going to SCREW themselves up. That's because THC changes the way the brain grows, and if this
happens whilst it's still growing serious problems occur. The risk is less after about 18 or something.
That wasn't really relevent, but that's just what I've learned about my drug of choice over the years.
Hemp as a plant is a great plant, and has many practical uses - shipbuilding being the first major one which made it become an important part of the
UKs and USs farming culture. However the swing against it was taken, still hundreds of years ago. The christian church classes it as the plant of
witches etc. and degenerates. This was enforced by the people that we were killing in the crusades - who were allegedly using it to make fearless
assassins, though it was more likely opium. (hashish - assassin, where the term came from). This anti-cannabis sentiment isn't just a product of
modern financial interests, or if it is it started further back than many would think.