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92165449216544 Member Posts: 1,904

What are you views on Marijuana? Should it be legal? I see that it is a gateway drug, it can get you into hardcore drugs especially at a young age, but at the same time it is extremely relaxing. So I am kinda undecided.

This weekend I had like 8 people do my house and we all smoked weed in my studio which is disconected from the house. Well my mom came in when four of us were doing the hookah up in the loft, so she could hear it easily. She said it was like a huge bong inside lol. Well she made everyone get rides home and didnt get too mad, she was mainly just mad that we did it in our house. My dad was a different story, he was pretty damn pissed and would have called the cops on us if it was in his house, which it wasnt luckily. They both think it is my first time, when I really have been doing it for a few months now. I dont know if im gong to keep doing it, it does make me a more laid back person and people have really been starting to like me more now, because I dont give a shit about anything. But at the same time im worried about becoming addicted and stupid over it from doing it too much. So maybe I will quit im not sure. I guess its better doing that then drinking, which can actually kill you.



  • NihilanthNihilanth Member Posts: 1,357

    my advice, quit. no i don't think it should be legal. my uncle did marijuana, LSD, all that stuff in the 60s. he died from lung cancer 4 years ago. he never smoked a cigarette in his life. anyone that says drugs can't kill you doesnt know what the hell they're talking about. even if it doesn't directly kill you it puts you in an extremely dillusional state and you might do things you could seriously regret later in life. also, about the addiction, you are very very likely to become addicted if you keep it up. lastly, about not caring about anything. this should tell you right away to stop taking drugs. not caring about anything is a BAD thing. do you really want to end up a dead from a car crash or a dad before you're ready because you "didnt care at the time"?

    my advice to you is quit now before you are too deep to get yourself out.

    Schutzbar - Human Warrior - Windrunner Alliance - World of Warcraft
    Nihilanth - Kerra Paladin - Blackburrow - EverQuest II
    XBL Gamertag - Eagle15GT

  • cukimungacukimunga Member UncommonPosts: 2,258
    I think Weed Is a God given Herb to be used. Ive been smoking weed since I was 14 now im 22 yeah i did do alot of other drugs but it wasnt because weed made me do it. I chose to do other drugs to see how they made me feel. Most of them I tried once and never did them agian. I like the views of Amsterdam You can smoke it at your house or a coffe shop . Most places dont even serve alcohol cuz of the roudy effect it can produce. Shrooms are legal but they are trying to ban them. All the other drugs have really harsh penalties. If i could smoke weed freely I wouldnt want to do any other drugs. I think its mostly just wanting to rebel why ppl experiment with drugs. Im strickly all natural weed shrooms here and there. I really havent had the earge to smoke everyday like Ive had in the past.So you can say Im not addicted quiting smoking cigaretts was a way harder thing for me to do. You should smoke weed to relax and do it sparingly. Coming from someone that used to smoke and Ounce in a hour with some friends.  Yeah its unfortunate that your uncle died man, im really sorry to hear that but, I know drugs can kill weed has carsonagins just as tobacoo has but there are healthier ways to do it. Like smoking out of a vaporizer or putting them in brownies.In my oppinion Weed should be legal and alcohol should be Illegal. How many people die from drunk drivers, how many drunken fathers beat there wifes and kids, Yes weed has destoyed families but thats only becuase pple are in jail for years for selling and you can even get the death penalty for growing it. Don't do drugs becuse people like you more do them because you want to do them. Its so sad that Marijuana is illeagal its a really beautiful plant that has many good uses from making clohtes to helping cancer patients. It has healing powers belive it or not. Henry ford made a car out of hemp once and it had 10 times the impact strength of steel.  There are so many ways this plant can help our nation they just dont give it a chance. Our socitey is based apon making money they make so much money selling us crap and when you have to buy new clothes and shoes all the time its just stupid. you can make health food out of the seeds that are drug free and have amino acids that our bodies need and have been shown to lower blood cholesterol and dissolve plaque in coronary arteries.
    Hemp paper is naturally acid-free. The oldest printed paper in existence is a 100 percent hemp Chinese text dated to 770 AD. Thomas Jefferson drafted both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution on hemp paper. It would save the trees.
    Hemp seeds have provided a combustible fuel oil throughout human history. More importantly, though, the same high cellulose level that makes hemp ideal for paper also makes it perfect for ethanol fuel production. Ethanol is the cleanest-burning liquid bio-alternative to gasoline. In one test, an unleaded gasoline automobile engine produced a thick, black carbon residue in its exhaust, while the tailpipe of a modified ethanol engine tested for the same 3,500 miles remained pristine and residue-free. but no the George W. Bush and the oil companies are making to much money to save the enviornment. but the rest that hemp can do for us is here.   Please check it out and give Marijuana a chance
  • killerTwinkiekillerTwinkie Member CommonPosts: 1,694

    THE LSD in the weed itself should be utterly destroyed.

    Hemp, the marijuana plant WITHOUT LSD, is a very resourceful tool. Something that could save our planet.


    KillerTwinkie - That one guy who used to mod's forums.

  • cukimungacukimunga Member UncommonPosts: 2,258

    Lsd doesnt come from weed. Lsd is the 25 estraction from mold on rye bread. anyways THC comes from Marijuana and its not bad at all. Its a great way to relive stress for me anyways. But hey if you dont like it thats your own personal opinion and I have to respect that.There has been pple that have chronic back pain or arthritis and all the pain killers in the world wouldnt help. But when they smoked marijuana the pain stopped. The drug its self has many uses.

    "The accumulated data indicate a potential therapeutic value for cannabinoid drugs, particularly for symptoms such as pain relief, control of nausea and vomiting, and appetite stimulation." • Reduction of intraocular (within the eye) pressure; Reduction of muscle spasms. I wish more people can think like me and the many others. I was tought as a kid that all drugs were bad. But for some reason this drug stands out from the rest. God is not evil he never could have made anything evil. Man made marijuana bad mostly from the Mormans that got there Religion from someone guy reading some made up things out of a hat. And a guy that Injected dogs with THC that has never done a previous study on dogs before. He said it made the dogs act Insane. How can you tell how a dog feels and you cant talk to a dog. The court session to make weed officially Illegal only lasted a matter of 15 minutes. that is a miniscule amount of time to make such an impact on peoples lives. 

  • 92165449216544 Member Posts: 1,904

    I should clarify what I mean, when I said I dont care I meant that I dont care about some of the stupid things in highschool, like now I dont care what people think about me, I dont do stuff to be cool, I do what I want not what others want me to do. All my stoner friends are actually my coolest friends I have, all of them are more laid back, and arent so fake and shallow like some others are.

    Im sick of getting lectured by people though, my girl friend cheated on me when she was drunk and now she is trying to get my to stop smoking weed, when she is the one who almost drank her self to death and wanted to 4 way with some other people. She could have been pregnant from some dudes she doesnt even know. So which is worse? Weed or alcohol?

    I will never do anything hardcore, I dont want to get into any bad drugs, only natural stuff like weed and shrooms. I have tried smoking before and once in a while I do it after smoking weed to get a better high but I dont like them at all. In my life I have probly smoked 1 pack of ciggarets and I have no need to do any more. I cant really drink too well anymore, I got really drunk like a year ago and could have killed myself. When ever I taste hard alcohol I want to throw up and sometimes I do lol.

    The only thing I am worried about is getting stupid and loosing memory over smoking weed, one of my strong points is my intelligence, not math and stuff like that, but the ability to make decisions and become successful, an attribute alot of people dont have. I have my whole life planned out and am getting involved in mutual funds to ensure that I will be able to retire at around 50, and have another mutual fund to hopefully have enough money to pay off college by the time I graduate. I just dont want to become lazy and stupid and screw my life over because of marijuana.

  • LastSpartanLastSpartan Member Posts: 87

    I recently was told by a pretty reliable source that damage done to the brain by weed besides memory loss (which you can't do much about) can be repaired. This is because smoking doesn't kill brain cells but retracts brain cell dendrites which can be regrown through stimulation.

  • SaigonshakesSaigonshakes Member Posts: 937

    Weed isn't as bad as you've been told. Booze and cigs have been proven many times to be more harmful than weed yet they are both legal. About it being a gateway drug, maybe in some cases. Depends on the person. Myslef and my friends that do smoke weed have never touched any hard stuff. Just look at the the people that do and that should be enough to keep you away.

    Weed is relaxing, fun, and much more harmless than it's made out to be imo. Plus it doesn't hurt that everything tastes 10 times better and evertything is so damn funny::::28::.

    Don'y worry about becoming stupid. I started smoking my sophomore year and did well all throughout high school. One of my friends was a pretty heavy pot smoker and I kid you not he carried a 4.0 throughout high school.

  • VercadesVercades Member Posts: 1,065

    Originally posted by 9216544

    I should clarify what I mean, when I said I dont care I meant that I dont care about some of the stupid things in highschool, like now I dont care what people think about me, I dont do stuff to be cool, I do what I want not what others want me to do. All my stoner friends are actually my coolest friends I have, all of them are more laid back, and arent so fake and shallow like some others are.

    I find that very strange, cause most of my stoner friends I found was the very fake and shallow kind  to me.  Kicking me around like someone they didn't care about.  Verbally abusing me, not even listening to anything I said, mostly just not caring at all no matter what I did.  Friends like that stopped me from ever making real friends that cared about me and what I said.  Yeah,  I had about 10 of em all we're real jerks to me.  Talked with a couple people that do pot on the net, they go,"Are you one of those people that say pot is bad!"  Then just usually talk all dumb about something after that.  I still believe people just like pot cause they wanna talk all stupid, be stupid and make people laugh at em cause its cool.

    My experiences with people that smoked MJ is they became very erratic in school studies, tended to cheat on tests from others but, these people that are pot heads we'ren't always like this.  I mean they start doing it and after the drug wears off they become jerks, then slowly are nice and cool to hang around again.  After hanging around these people so many years I just lost hope in ever finding decent friends otherwise being branded as a prep, jock, geek, loser.  I just wanted to belong apparently I never found a place.

    Granted school life is very stressful and boring at times but, you know there's many other things out there to your disposal other then illegal drugs.  I think doing MJ all together isn't going to help you, it'll only make things worse by pilling up your responsibilities then when you gotta handle em you're like OH S#*#!   It also can make you lose lots of opportunities placed before you, cause you just need that puff rather then that A on the test.

    My two cents take it for what its worth.

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    ok i have sezures(sp) epilepsy i have to take a barbituate called pheonobarbital when and if i get off of this drug the procedure of weening me off them has many side effect mostly bad ones.

    i would prefer to take THC once they prove it has better effects for people with epilepsy than take the drug im on now. i smoked once i didnt like it sat there for 4 hours cross leged staring at a poster wasnt fun. maybe something less harsh the kind i tried was humbolt green not brick mex. so me being a first timer hit me hella hard. i might try it again if its proven.

    right now they are doing tests to find out if its better for people with epilepsy than the current meds they have out that have more bad side effects than good effects.

    beer and other cocktails to me are worse than weed could ever be. i would prefer someone driving slower thats high than a person speeding drunk. seen many a alchy die from drinking to much never heard of or seen a person od while just smoking weed. if someone has info on that please post a link to a reputable news site plz.

    thats just my 2 cents im for and against it but would vote yes like i have before to legalize it. i never understood how people make it look evil when people who smoke just weed arent killers or rapists. also weed is the NUMBER 1 cash crop in the US. ::::20::::::28::

  • LastSpartanLastSpartan Member Posts: 87

    Originally posted by Saigonshakes

    don't worry about becoming stupid. I started smoking my sophomore year and did well all throughout high school. One of my friends was a pretty heavy pot smoker and I kid you not he carried a 4.0 throughout high school.

    Actually it pretty funny theres some people(Im one of them) that find it allot easier to learn while high. I find it opens my mind allot making it easier to think and concentrate.
  • FinweFinwe Member CommonPosts: 3,106

    Marijuana is something that for the most part is amoral. Those that take it for a painkiller and don't abuse the drug, I'm all for that; it's not being abused, it's just to numb the pain, all for that.

    When it starts getting immoral is when it goes into the pothead/stoner territory; the abuse of the drug, and the mind-altering effects it has.

    "The greatest trick the devil played on humanity in the 20th century was convincing them that he didn't exist." (Paraphrasing) C.S. Lewis

    "If a mother can kill her own child, what is left before I kill you and you kill me?" -Mother Teresa when talking about abortion after accepting the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979

  • SerienSerien Member CommonPosts: 8,460

    I do not think it should be legal. I understand that it's relaxing and that it just makes you feel a hella lot better...but imagine if it was legal.

    That would just be too much.

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    murt please explain how it would be too much plz. there are people working everyday in this country that are high from owners of companies to the guy that build your brand new home to the person that just delivered your tasty pizza.

    also how is it immoral?? being married at 12 is immoral right now but many years ago it was normal.

    i think and believe that if it doesnt effect me people should be able to do it freely. now hard drugs such as morophine and cocaine should be illegal always morophine as of right now isnt illegal but is one of the most addicting drug on the market even worse that nicotine and thats a fact. almost all of the synthetic drug for pain are the most addictive drugs out there.

    in amsterdam there is so low of crime rate it makes us look like we condone random acts of violence. to be in a almost peaceful state people need to quit looking to the friggin bible i believe in god i just dont believe in the bible or church. does that make me a immoral person no.

    if this country legalized pot we would never have to worry about being in debt at all no taxes nothing they would make enough money off legal selling of pot. but there inlies the problem making it illegal makes money just not as much as it would being legal. ::::20::::::28::

  • FaintFaint Member Posts: 82

    I think it should not be legal. Some side affects may be good but most are not. My brother is a doctor and he told me he's seen some pretty fucked up people that did drugs.


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  • OrccOrcc Member Posts: 3,043

    It was partially legalised here awhile ago... although i forget what happened if its still legal or not... anyways, last I heard, if youre caught with weed on you and you have I think under 6 grams, you just get a fine.

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    metalfox weed doesnt = hippies maybe in your messed up world but not mine. damn cartman relax and dont hate people unless you know them.

    fate think that was your name messed up on drug of what kind be more specific plz. my best friends dad as a officer unloaded a full clip into a guy that was on pcp didnt kill him untill he came down and the dad got a broken leg and arm. thats pcp, angeldust. we are talking about marijuana not the other stuff that shouldnt be legal just pot.

    the reason i know alot of this is cause i have epelipsy i have only smoked once until i find out from more doctors that it might help me i wont do it. the reason i am looking for something else is cause i only have stress siesures and only when im asleep i have never had one when i was awake. so i really cant tell my doctor anything cause dmv will take my licence away which is messed up since i have never had one while i was awake. bu8t that doesnt matter to them they say i could have one well i could get hit by a car walking also so take all drivers licences away the but game doesnt make any sence to me. now i could see them saying first one you have while drive its gone i would understand that that would be ok.

    thats one thing i dont like is playing the what if game. look around the world at the places pot is legal and look at the good it outwieghs the bad. less people would do drugs if it was legal its the no aspect that draws people to it. thats what happened in amsterdam.


  • KiamdeKiamde Member CommonPosts: 5,820

    It should not be legal. It is too mind imparing to be legalized. Marijuana, heroine, and other opiods should only be used for strict medical orders.

    "Whoever controls the media controls the mind..-'Jim Morrison"

    "When decorum is repression, the only dignity free men have is to speak out." ~Abbie Hoffman

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    kiande please look at this list and tell me where marijuana is a opiate/opiod

    Brand / Generic Names

    Raw Opium, Opium, Codeine, Morphine, Heroin, Hydromorphone (Dilaudid), Oxycodone (Percodan), Oxymorphone (Numorphan), Hydrocodone (Vicodin), Meperidine (Demerol), Fentanyl, Methadone (Dolophine), Darvon, Talwin.
    Street Names

    Smack, Horse, Junk, "H", Hard Stuff, Shit, Mexican Brown, China White, Chiva, Goma, Gumball, Schoolboy, Downtown, Dolls, Dollies, Drug Store Heroin, Miss Emma, Morf, "M", Morpho, Big H, Black Tar, Boy, Brown Sugar, Crown Crap, Doogie, Hairy, Harry, Hazel, Henry, George Smack, Him, Horse Radish, Joy Powder, Mud, Muzzle, Scag, Schmeck, Smeck, Tecata, White Lady.


    i just want to help people understand and take out the myths of pot ::::20::::::28::

    also when used medically like me im on phenobarbital which is a barbituat taken by me i am not effected by its ill effects as if someone else who didnt have my condition they would get high off it i dont im normal on it.
    the same is being documented for medical marijuana the effects arent felt as if it wasnt helping a part of the brain. so it off sets there are good and bad to all but for some people we need the evil drug as some say to produce some good for us.

  • PuoltryPuoltry Member Posts: 956

    I come from a background of personal responsibility.So on that note yes it should be legalized.This doesnt mean every 15 year old in the world should be able to purchase it though.

    What i mean is that by legalizing drugs it should be treated like anything else.You turn 21 you make a choice to not do it or to do it.

    There should be penalties etc etc.

    Heres some things i think about sometimes:

    1.Ive never heard of anyone overdosing from smoking pot.Get fatter sure:).

    2.Cigarettes and pot are both smoked right?

    Then why is it that a KNOWN killer (tobbaco) is perfectly legal to buy over the counter?The packs have WARNINGS.It has been known for a LONG time that tobbaco causes cancer and is extremly harmful to overall health.

    Yet ive never heard of anyone getting cancer for pot.Most doctors would like to prescribe it to counter act the effects of chemotherapy if ya asked them about it.

    If pot is illegal then why arent cigarettes?

    1 answer:The tax stamp on every pack of cigarettes.

    Want to ENJOY an mmo?

    Dont start a guild and dont be a leader or volunteer to be coleader or captain.

    Just play the damn game:)

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    heres a artical from webmd also

    Featured Centers
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    You are in Diseases & Conditions.

    Brain Chemicals Suggest Marijuana's Effects

    Natural Substances May Mirror Pot's Effects on the Brain

    By Miranda Hitti
    WebMD Medical News Reviewed By Brunilda Nazario, MD
    on Wednesday, September 15, 2004

    Sept. 15, 2004 -- Marijuana is well known for its widespread effects on the brain. The key to understanding its impact may come from the brain's own pharmacy.

    Brains make their own calming substances called cannabinoids, which are similar to marijuana's active ingredients.

    Cannabinoids are made in the brain's cortex, an area which processes sensory information and orchestrates movement, thinking, learning, and emotions.

    Scientists already knew that the cells in this area of the brain can make their own cannabinoids.

    These cells (pyramidal) normally work to excite neighboring cells; using their homemade cannabinoids temporarily allows more information to be processed by lowering the brain's inhibition of excess information processing. By lulling other brain cells, cannabinoids temporarily leave the pyramid cells free to fire away.

    Now, researchers at Stanford University in California have found that other type of brain cells -- LTS cells -- can also make cannabinoids.

    LTS cells ordinarily keep pyramid cells in check. This process works to guard too much information being processed from pyramidal cells to neighboring cells within the brain region.

    But when LTS cells make their own cannabinoids, they tune themselves out from surrounding cells.

    As a result, the brain's pyramid cells are temporarily freed from inhibition. They then process excess information to other cells.

    The effects can last up to 35 minutes.

    Marijuana's active ingredients may behave the same way, latching on to these cannabinoid receptor sites allowing information to be process in an altered way.

    "A loss of inhibition in pyramid cells could produce changes in perception, in motor function, and in everything the cerebral cortex does," researcher David Prince, MD, says in a news release.

    Studying cannabinoid receptors may one day lead to drugs for conditions such as epilepsy, says Prince, the Edward F. and Irene Thiele Pimley professor of neurology and neurosciences at Stanford University School of Medicine.

    During seizures pyramidal cells fire out of control, one reason may be that neighboring cells get shut down. Targeting and blocking cannabinoid receptors might quiet pyramidal cells activity.

    Prince and Stanford colleagues based their study on lab rats. Their report appears in the Sept. 16 issue of Nature.

    SOURCES: Prince, D. Nature, Sept. 16, 2004. News release, Stanford University Medical Center

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    also check out this link plz ::::20::::::28::

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    Drug policy of the Netherlands

    The drug policy of the Netherlands is based on two principles:

    1. Drug use is a public health issue, not a criminal matter
    2. The distinction between hard drugs and soft drugs

    It is a pragmatic policy. Most policymakers in the Netherlands believe that if a problem has proved to be unstoppable, it is better to try and control it instead of continuing to enforce laws that have shown to be unable to stop the problem. Most other countries seem to take the principal point of view that drugs are bad and must be outlawed, whether that course of action yields any results or not. This has caused friction between the Netherlands and other countries, most notably with France and Germany. As of 2004, Belgium seems to be moving toward the Dutch model and local German legislators are calling for experiments based on the Dutch model.::::20::::::28::

    i know giving alot of info just want people to read and learn the good and the bad

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855


    By Joris Vos

    Informed debate and analysis require reliable data and information, so I was disappointed to read Larry Collins' biased, unbalanced, and highly anecdotal article on Dutch drug policy ("Holland's Half-Baked Drug Experiment," May/June 1999). Not only does Collins not compare different types of drug policies and their outcomes, he makes many factual errors. To name a few:

    The increase in cannabis use that Collins cites is also present in other European countries, so factors other than Dutch drug policy are obviously relevant. Cannabis use in the United States, for example, is much higher than in the Netherlands.

    Collins' assertion that the Netherlands has twice as many heroin addicts as the United Kingdom is wrong. They have comparable rates of heroin use.

    Also incorrect is Collins' statement that the percentage of THC (the substance that gives a pot-smoker a high) in the Dutch-grown marijuana known as Nederwiet is as high as 35 percent. The actual figure is 8 percent -- only around 1 percent higher than that of foreign marijuana.

    Collins reports an increase in cannabis use among youth in major Dutch cities, from which he infers that the "skyrocketing" rise (for which no figures are provided) in violent crime in those cities is due to increased cannabis use. But it has been scientifically established that cannabis does not evoke aggression, making Collins' linking of both (possibly untrue) observations highly questionable.

    The description of slums in Rotterdam and Amsterdam should have included a comparison with such areas in other countries. Although some problems do exist in these places, they pale in comparison to those in the major cities of the Western world.

    The drug policy of the Netherlands has evolved over the years with the consent of the Dutch people, who are, for the most part, satisfied with the results. Although our approach may differ from other countries', our goals are the same: reducing drug use and the harm it causes both the user and society. Any sober analysis of Dutch drug policy will reveal both some impressive results and some areas that require more aggressive action. Collins' article was not intended to further serious, responsible debate; it was a simplistic polemic about a problem that surely deserves more informed and factual treatment.

    Joris Vos is Ambassador of the Netherlands to the United States.


    By Joseph A. Califano, Jr.

    Larry Collins takes a clear-eyed look at the dangerous downside of Holland's drug laws, which have increased crime and addiction within the Netherlands -- and beyond. His article strips away the benign veneer that some attribute to marijuana. Collins should be congratulated for reporting on the tragic ramifications of Holland's loose marijuana laws, which include an increase in the number of Dutch youngsters abusing and addicted to drugs.

    Joseph A. Califano, Jr., is Chair and President of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University.


    By Craig Reinarman and Peter Cohen

    Larry Collins asserts that Dutch policies have caused an "explosion" of heroin addiction and juvenile crime and claims that Holland has virtually become a drug-dealing state causing havoc in neighboring countries. But most of Collins' arguments are exaggerated, misleading, or false. Consider the following examples.

    Since 1976, the Dutch parliament has supported decriminalization and harm reduction. But Collins does not quote a single Dutch official saying anything positive about Dutch drug policy.

    Collins claims that Dutch-grown marijuana is "enormously potent," with a content of THC "as high as 35 percent." He cites studies by the Dutch Trimbos Institute when they appear to support his case -- but not their Drug Monitoring Program's study showing that the average THC content of Dutch pot is 10 percent. Collins also neglects to mention surveys showing that most Dutch users actually prefer the milder strains of marijuana and that those who do smoke the stronger stuff use less of it.

    Nor is there much reason to think that the Dutch drug approach has made much more of the population try marijuana. Recent surveys in Amsterdam, where marijuana has long been widely available, found that about 30 percent of the population had tried it; surveys in the United States, where nearly 700,000 arrests were made last year to reduce pot's availability, found that about 35 percent of people in comparably large cities had tried it.

    Collins rejects official estimates of drug use in favor of unnamed "critics" who contend that there are 35,000 addicts in the Netherlands. But Collins never expresses this estimate as a rate and compares it to that of other nations. With a population of about 15 million, 35,000 addicts is 1 in 428 Dutch citizens. The U.S. government estimates that there are 750,000 heroin addicts in its population of 265 million, or 1 in 353 Americans. Moreover, a 1998 report by the European Union (EU) Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction found that the Dutch rate of "problem drug use" was lower than that of most other European countries.

    Collins quotes an unnamed French police officer who alleges that an "explosion" of "international trafficking groups" in the Netherlands was caused by "the light sentences" and "liberal attitude" of Dutch judges. But comparable nations with harsh laws and conservative judges giving heavy sentences also have their share of such trafficking groups.

    Collins attributes a "skyrocketing growth in juvenile crime" and "acts of violence" to Dutch drug policy, arguing that marijuana use is most prevalent in big cities -- as is violent crime. But correlation is not causation. There is more of every "sin" in every big city, and crime has also increased in countries with harsh drug laws.

    Collins argues that the Netherlands' lenient drug policy has made it the "narcotics capital of Europe," as if the French or the Germans would never have found any drugs to use without the Dutch. This is not how humans or markets work. EU data on narcotics seizure show supplies of illicit drugs almost everywhere, and the Dutch share thereof has been stable for a decade.

    Drug use among Dutch youth, Collins concludes, looks "remarkably similar to the youth drug scene elsewhere in Europe." He seems to think that this similarity damns Dutch drug policy, but it is really praise. Collins is correct: Dutch drug use is indeed not much different from that of most Western societies, including the United States. The Dutch just have less HIV infection, deaths from overdoses, and imprisonment -- and less of almost every type of drug use.

    Globalization is fast creating a multicultural world with multiple moralities and multiple lifestyles. One-size-fits-all drug policies are doomed. The Dutch have a rich history of nonabsolutist problem-solving from which many have learned much. But the Dutch are not proselytizing, claiming that they see drug policy's promised land. Neither should those pushing more punitive approaches.

    Craig Reinarman is Professor of Sociology and Legal Studies at the University of California at Santa Cruz and Visiting Scholar at the University of Amsterdam's Center for Drug Research. Peter Cohen is Professor of Social Epidemiology at the University of Amsterdam and Director of its Center for Drug Research.


    The "informed debate and analysis" that Ambassador Vos calls for also requires an accurate reading of the article in question, something which apparently escaped the ambassador in his perusal of "Holland's Half-Baked Drug Experiment."

    I did not write that the Netherlands has twice as many heroin addicts as the United Kingdom; I wrote that the Netherlands has twice as many heroin addicts per capita as the United Kingdom, one of the European countries hardest hit by the heroin scourge. That is hardly a tribute to the effectiveness of a drug policy that is now almost a quarter of a century old -- one of the aims of which was to curb hard-drug use.

    The statement that the percentage of THC in Nederwiet could rise as high as 35 percent was indeed incorrect. The real figure, as reported by the Dutch Public Prosecutor's Office, is 40 percent. The prosecutor's report goes on to note that "the harmful effects of this variant can therefore be greater than those of hard drugs."

    I did not "report" an increase in cannabis use among Dutch youth. I cited, first, statistics compiled by the Dutch Alcohol and Drug Information Center, which showed a 25 percent increase in the number of people asking for help in dealing with a cannabis problem in 1997, and second, J. A. Wallenberg, the director of the Jellinek Clinic and probably the Netherlands' leading expert in the treatment of addiction of all kinds.

    The ambassador wants statistics? The Telegraf, an Amsterdam newspaper, published Dutch Ministry of Justice figures on January 29, 1997, showing that the number of juveniles involved in acts of violence had risen 85 percent in a decade. As I wrote, it was senior police officers in Amsterdam and The Hague -- not me -- who attributed much of that growing juvenile crime problem to persistent soft-drug users. This is due not so much to aggressiveness while the user is under the influence of marijuana but rather to the socially disruptive lifestyles that regular and heavy soft-drug use can produce.

    There is no sound statistical basis for the ambassador's statement that "the Dutch people are for the most part satisfied with the result" of Dutch drug policy. No nationwide poll or referendum has ever been taken to determine what percentage of the population approves, disapproves, or is indifferent to the Netherlands' drug policy. One referendum of registered voters was taken on the subject in the Dutch-Belgian border town of Hulst -- admittedly a special case, as the community is regularly invaded by Belgian hash smokers. Still, 96 percent of those polled wanted all the community's drug-selling "coffee shops" closed -- hardly a ringing endorsement of the nation's drug policy.

    Finally, the ambassador's letter fails to address the principal thrust of the article -- namely, that the Netherlands' tolerant drug policies have turned his charming country into the drug-dealing capital of Europe.


    The letter from Craig Reinarman and Peter Cohen should be considered in the light of Cohen's statements in the Dutch press advocating the legalization of all drugs, including heroin, LSD, and Ecstasy. The Center for Drug Research, with which both authors are affiliated, is an active champion of such a policy.

    In view of Reinarman and Cohen's concern for the statistics published by the government-funded Trimbos Institute, they might wish to contemplate this one, published in the institute's January 14, 1999, Hard Drug Policy Paper: "Drug use is considered to be the primary motivation behind crimes against property."

    I did not attribute the "skyrocketing growth in juvenile crime" and "acts of violence" to drug use. The police officers in Amsterdam and The Hague who have to deal with the problem did.

    Holland's role as the drug-dealing capital of Europe is indisputable, as attested to by the seizures of drugs of every kind pouring out of the country into Belgium, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom. The statistics form far too lengthy a list to print here; to take just one example, consider the 1998 seizure figures of the French Office Central des Stupefiants, which delineate clearly the staggering amounts of heroin, cocaine, and Ecstasy flooding into France from Holland. Three times in the last two months, the police here in the south of France have broken up drug-trafficking gangs that journeyed regularly to Rotterdam to buy heroin in those houses I visited for a quarter or a fifth of what they could sell it for here. Are Reinarman and Cohen aware of the case of Ahmet Erka, who was convicted by the Dutch courts of importing tons of hashish worth millions of guilders into Holland? For that, he did a year and a half in prison -- barely a slap on the wrist that greedily grabbed up all those guilders. That is why Europe's drug dealers prefer to do their business in Holland -- and that is how humans and markets work.

    Finally, Reinarman and Cohen are indeed correct to note that the Dutch have often had a "nonabsolutist" approach to social problems from which many have learned much. This is certainly true of their drug policies. Here, the lesson is evident: The Dutch model is not an example to be followed by the United States or the other nations of western Europe. Those who would have us do so are peddling a brand of high-minded, end-of-the-millennium snake oil.

    Larry Collins is the coauthor, with Dominique LaPierre, of numerous books including Is Paris Burning?, O Jerusalem!, and Freedom at Midnight.

  • lyonman24lyonman24 Member Posts: 855

    and here is what larry collins says sigthing no sources

    Summary: The Netherlands' vaunted drug policies -- legalizing the public sale of cannabis products in the now-famous coffee shops and adopting a generally lenient attitude toward drug use -- have turned the country into the narcotics capital of western Europe. Dutch cops admit that Holland is to synthetic drugs what Colombia is to cocaine. Not only is Holland's increasingly potent marijuana not staying in the legal coffee shops, but its illegal export brings in far more money than that traditional Dutch export, tulips. Meanwhile, drug addiction has tripled. There are no easy answers to drugs, but naive Dutch legislators have made a hash of drug policy.

    Larry Collins is the coauthor, with Dominique LaPierre, of numerous books including Is Paris Burning?, O Jerusalem!, and Freedom at Midnight.

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    "Look at the Dutch example!"

    That phrase has become a kind of mantra, chanted whenever the advocates of liberalizing drug laws in Europe or the United States gather. The Dutch, liberalization proponents argue, got it right by legalizing the public sale, under certain restraints, of cannabis products in their now-famous coffee shops and by adopting a much more lenient policy toward all forms of drug use and abuse based on a philosophy of "harm reduction."

    But did they? It has been almost a quarter-century since the Dutch Parliament set Holland's drug policy on a course of its own, one markedly different from that of the rest of Europe. Surely 23 years is enough time to examine the consequences of that policy. How has it affected drug use and addiction in the Netherlands? What impact has it had on Holland's next-door neighbors, France, Belgium, Germany, and the United Kingdom? Do the results really justify holding the Dutch drug policy up as a model for other nations to follow? Or are they a warning about the risks of following the Dutch example?

    The revised Dutch drug policy was based on Parliament's 1976 acceptance of the recommendation of a commission headed by Pieter A.H. Baan, a psychiatrist and expert in rehabilitating drug addicts who was serving at the time in the Dutch Office of Mental Health. The Baan Commission's report proposed distinguishing between so-called List One drugs -- those that present "an unacceptable risk (heroin, cocaine and LSD)" -- and List Two drugs -- cannabis products, such as hashish and marijuana -- seen as less dangerous and "softer." Essentially, Parliament depenalized the possession of 30 grams of marijuana or hashish -- enough, the legislators calculated, to meet an average smoker's needs for three months. At the same time, the parliamentarians vowed to continue the fight against both domestic and international trafficking in the more dangerous List One drugs.

    Shortly after accepting the commission's primary recommendation, Parliament went a step further by authorizing the commercialization of cannabis products through their open sale in a network of licensed coffee shops. Those shops were subject to a number of legal constraints: they were not allowed to sell more than 30 grams to a customer; no hard drugs were to be sold on their premises; and they were neither to advertise, sell to minors, nor operate within 500 meters of a school. Out of respect for Holland's international treaty obligations, the import, export, production, or sale of cannabis products outside the coffee shops remained illegal.

    At the time the Baan Commission report was adopted, Holland had what was considered a serious heroin addiction problem, albeit one roughly comparable to that of its European neighbors. The nation was relatively untroubled by major international drug traffickers, with the exception of a number of Chinese "triads" (gangs) whose trafficking was pretty much confined to the Dutch marketplace.

    How has that situation changed today? First and most revealing, Holland (in the words of senior customs and police officers in the United Kingdom, France, ...

    End of preview: first 500 of 5,945 words total.

  • necbonenecbone Member Posts: 358

    yo, heres how i see it....

    marijuana should be decriminalized...and its seen as a gateway drug cuz we have to go thru sleezy coke or other drug dealers to get trees...if everyone or some people could grow alittle bit, itd be different....

    america is too conservative right now for any sort of decriminalization of weed, we just  re-elected bush, ya know?  we're the christian states of america.

    i also know weed can affect people in different ways and everyone shouldnt be smoking it and it is a drug, but so is and does alchohol....

    basically at this point, fuck the law....the law dosnt care about us and their just doing their job like sheep....slavery used to be legal, was that right?

This discussion has been closed.