The Pot Issue

Let me just start by saying that I don’t smoke pot, I don’t consume pot, I don’t particularly like pot, I think it’s stupid.  At the very least, it makes me stupid and that, in my book, is bad enough.  But, that’s me.  I don’t have a single condition that marijuana would help except stress, and for me, a nice bottle of red or a jack and coke take care of that just as nicely as pot would.  In all reality, I could give a shit about pot.  It’s not my drug.

However, I live in Colorado where medical marijuana has been written into the very constitution!  I’m OK with that.  It’s what the people wanted, and I’m glad that they got it.  I know a lot of people who are very much helped by it.  From my friend with MS to another dying of cancer to another with horrible rheumatoid arthritis to another with, yes, chronic back pain.  I know, everyone is skeptical of that one, it’s how half the stoners in Colorado got their card, I get it.  But, in this case, it’s real.  A broken back will do that.  A broken back that has healed as much as it ever will and is now allowing sensation to pass – it’ll do it even more.

Yes, I also know my fair share of stoners who scammed their way to a “green card”.  And I know my fair share of people who are care providers for said stoners.  And you know what – I don’t care.

I’ve done my research.  Pot isn’t really that scary.  It’s way less harmful than the alcohol I am sipping as I write this.  It’s far less deadly than tobacco.  And, let’s be honest here, it’s WAY less scary than half of the FDA approved meds available at your local high school for a torn fiver and some pocket change.

The only reason I’m even writing about it is because now that it’s half legal I have to hear about it on the radio every day driving to and from work.  (Yes, I’ve tried changing the station, but really, it’s all they are talking about too.)

I’ve heard about how dangerous and scary it is.  The only thing dangerous about pot is how many funyuns the average stoner is willing to eat when s/he has the munchies.  Dangerous?  I wouldn’t drive while high mostly because I’d go too slow to ever get where I was going, but other than that, I’ve never seen anyone on straight pot get violent and start a fight, I’ve never seen or heard of anyone on pot beating up their wife because she forgot to pass the joint (for those of you who missed the super bowl, “bring me my beer bitch” reference, let me make it a little more clear.), I’ve never been threatened, raped, harmed or assaulted by anyone on pot.  Change out the word pot and put in alcohol in the last paragraph and everything changes.

But, pot isn’t as legal as alcohol, so that’s a bad example.  In Colorado marijuana is legal as a medicine. Period.  You have to go to a doctor (If you can find one allowed by their practice to prescribe it) and get a diagnosis for one of the few things marijuana is legally approved to treat.  Then you have to get a prescription and either name a care provider or grow your own.

Here’s where the sudden interest in pot begins.  The medical marijuana dispensary.  The legal loophole in the “patience must be allowed access” clause of the new MMJ constitutional clause.

We don’t want them too close to schools, kids could get weed.

We don’t want too many in one area, people might use them.

We definitely don’t want people to medicate in them – however anyone living in federal housing can be evicted for using their prescribed medicine at home because it is still federally illegal.  Which leaves forcing them to medicate in public, on the streets.  (To me, that’s worse.  Just saying.) Also anyone who signed a standard rental agreement can also be evicted for using their prescribed medicine.  On top of that any medical marijuana patient who has a job that requires drug testing can be fired when their piss comes back hot.

Now, like I said, I’m not a fan of pot.  For myself.  It’s not my drug.  But then neither are Xanax, Ritalin, Prozac, Morphine, Oxycontin, Ambien, Zoloft, Viagra, or any of the other popular prescription drugs currently cruising the high school and college drug markets, not to mention the pharmacies directly across the street from said high schools and universities.

So here’s the thing, if we’re going to say that marijuana is legal as a medicine then let’s regulate it as a medicine.  Which blows the most recent anti-medical marijuana bill right out of the courts.

First – This rule that dispensaries must now produce some gigantic percentage of their own MMJ – I’m calling bullshit.  Pharmacies don’t have to produce a single grain of their own medicines in order to dispense them to the public.  A medical dispensary shouldn’t have to either

With that – these crazy new labeling laws where every single chemical used has to be noted, every strain used to produce the new strain, every sneeze committed within half a mile duly logged – we don’t even do that with apples which can be genetically modified with fish, corn, soy, peanuts and gluten, sprayed with horrible, toxic, certain death chemicals, treated with “food grade wax” which is also used on surf boards, and then sold to children without a single warning, caution or notice that this product is no longer edible food and might in fact cause immediate death.  Why pot, why now?

Second – No dispensaries within x distance of schools – unless that is the same distance that a pharmacy must be from a school – wipe it from the books.

Third – Unreasonable taxation without representation.  It’s in the original constitution – you know, the one that’s written on HEMP paper and on display in the National Archives up in DC – so if you’re not taxing pharmacies a million percent of their profits – you don’t get to tax the dispensaries that much either.

I’m sure there were more, but really it’s a matter of common sense (not so common anymore) and a little less hysteria – please.

Pot isn’t going to kill your kid.  If your kid wanted to smoke pot before it became medically legal it was just as easy, if not easier, to get it before it became medically legal.  Pot is just one of many medically legal drugs that your child will be made aware of by the time they reach junior high.  (There’s a reason they put the word high in junior high and high school.  It might just be the only way to survive. And this is coming from someone who doesn’t even like pot.)

So – if you REALLY want to protect your kids from pot – TALK TO THEM.  TELL THEM THE TRUTH. The truth is not hysterical.  The truth is that for a great many people marijuana works – to alleviate pain, to help with digestion, to calm frazzled nerves, to reverse glaucoma, to halt some cancers, etc.  The worst thing that pot will do to your child is make them temporarily stupid.  If they are ready for that, then they will have planned well and won’t need to drive anywhere after trying it out.  If they don’t know that, then, they might just be stupid enough to get behind the wheel of a car to try to make curfew.  Marijuana is now mostly legal.  Instead of freaking out, can’t we all just use this as an opportunity to talk about it.  Who knows, in ten years it might be all the way legal, just like alcohol.

I wonder if the instances of date rape will drop as the sales of funyuns rise…  I’m not a fan of funyuns, but I’d be OK with that outcome all the same…

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6 Comments

Filed under Rant

6 responses to “The Pot Issue

  1. Excellent write-up.

    Amendment 20 is the cornerstone to MMJ rights in Colorado. I agree that any legislation that hampers a patient’s ability to get his medicine certainly is against the spirit of Amendment 20.

  2. zach

    It is great to hear non-users value and respect cannabis. Thank you for the blog.

  3. I’m glad that you are able to appreciate the value of pot, even if it isn’t valuable to you. http://stonerdiary.wordpress.com

  4. Bill Clark

    I think the primary point here is that laws should be based on broadly applicable principles instead of tailored to target hot button issues.

  5. Pingback: Pot Part 2, the MMJ Saga Continues « ThinkBannedThoughts Blog

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