In our opinion: Opposing marijuana


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  • caljimw Orem, UT
    Jan. 19, 2014 7:31 p.m.

    Somehow, I don’t think concerned Americans are getting much sleep in the storms of change that seem to be sweeping through our country. We have a commander in chief, whose credibility is questioned on almost a daily basis, telling the nation that “marijuana is no more dangerous than alcohol”. In making the statement, he does not address the figures reported on January 14, 2014 that reflect over 80,000 alcohol related deaths in the Americas in 2013. Nor does he mention that in 2012, there were over 37000 traffic deaths in the United States. The CDC and the National Highway Traffic Administration have shown that in the 1990s, nearly 20% of drivers killed in traffic incidents had narcotics in their system.
    In 2012, Obama's director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy said, "...legalizing marijuana would not provide the answer to any of the health, social, youth education, criminal justice, and community quality of life challenges associated with drug use." He also mentioned the drug's connection to respiratory disease, cognitive impairment and addiction.
    I fear that there are too many Americans who are simply not prepared for the winds to blow.

  • peabody Steamboat Springs, CO
    Feb. 27, 2012 11:13 a.m.

    Legalize marijuana and outlaw alcohol and cigarettes.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 21, 2012 10:35 a.m.

    Go Ron Paul!

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 13, 2012 5:09 p.m.

    The founders were free to grow and use the plant God put on this earth. The Declaration of Independence requires legalization! Get the tea party on the real tea.

  • Joggle Clearfield, UT
    Feb. 5, 2012 12:17 a.m.

    The writer of this article has perpetuated falsehoods not based on fact in the writing of this article.

    Enforcing marijuana prohibition costs taxpayers an estimated $10 billion annually and results in the arrest of more than 853,000 individuals per year-- far more than the total number of arrestees for all violent crimes combined, including murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault. The facts are out there. Ridiculous waste of taxpayer's money!

    Marijuana prohibition causes more problems than it solves, and ruins thousands more lives than it supposedly tries to save.

    Generally known as legalization, it exists to various degrees in a handful of European countries like The Netherlands and Switzerland, both of which enjoy lower rates of adolescent marijuana use than the U.S.

    When marijuana is enjoyed responsibly, subjecting users to harsh criminal and civil penalties provides no public benefit and causes terrible injustices.

    The vast majority of marijuana smokers, like most other Americans, are good citizens who work hard, raise families, pay taxes and contribute in a positive way to their communities

    Abuse means harm. Some MJ use is harmful; most is not. That which is harmful should be discouraged; that which is not need not be.

  • Midvaliean MIDVALE, UT
    Feb. 3, 2012 10:03 a.m.

    Where do you get your figures that MJ is the drug of choice and when they can't get it they get something else, specifically other drugs?
    These "facts" are made up.
    Getting facts on drugs and crime can only be gotten from those who admit to using or those arrested for it. Since most users are not arrested for it, and most use in secret due to teh laws all these stats are non-sense.
    I know a lot of people that use marijuana. And they are not "stoners" you see on TV. They are hard working Utahans that don't like to drink, they like marijuana. They are productive middle class people with families they care about. They are not going to go get high on other drugs because marijuana isn't available.
    Because is baseball isn't on TV you will watch gymnastics. Because your wife's victoria secret catalog didn't arrive you buy a penthouse. That logic dosn't work. Sorry.
    Marijuana users are just like everyone else. I daresay you talk to them all the time and dont' even know it. Because a lot of people use it. The demographic isn't just tie-dyed hippies, it never was.

  • Shawnm750 West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 3, 2012 9:32 a.m.

    But legalizing it will not change anything either. People will still grow it illegally, and in stronger potency because drug dealers aren't about to give up their cash-cow. So, the DEA/government are still going to be focusing their resources on those same people.

    @atl134 - You are asserting that people do marijuana simply because it's illegal. People don't get "high" off of tobacco (though they do get addicted to nicotine, but that's a different set of chemicals at work.) MJ is the drug of choice for most because it's usually the cheapest and easiest to get, and they turn to the other drugs when they can't get as high anymore.

    True, MJ is one of the less addicting and less volatile drugs, but risks outweigh the benefits in my opinion. (I'm for banning tobacco too, but that's another argument.) I think we need to draw the proverbial line in the sand, and stand by it; because once we compromise our morals then we make it easier for those who would have us legalize other drugs/activities to make their case.

  • lds4gaymarriage Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 3, 2012 8:24 a.m.

    LDS Liberal to RedShirt -
    I thought you were a Free Market Capitalist,
    Get the Government out of the way,
    Smaller Government offices,
    Stop killing business with Federal regulations, sort?

    As I've said here before, liberals want your guns and your money, but conservatives want your obedience. They believe in smaller government UNLESS it is used to impose subjective morality on society...no drugs, no booze, no gambling, no shopping for cars, etc..on Sundays, no marriage rights of gays, etc... Conservatives believe in using force to prevent people from sinning "so that none will be lost, no, not one...just give all the glory to me."

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Feb. 3, 2012 8:08 a.m.

    Here in CA the medicinal marijuana program is a joke. There seem to be Drs. that "specialize" in giving out the necessary permits to obtain it. So, as a result people can get it for nearly every ailment possible. It is not dispensed through pharmacies, but instead marijuana "dispensaries." The dispensaries have been the target of federal officials so many are forced to close. I could be wrong, but I don't think there is an "official" dispensary in our county at the moment, though one is being pursued in SLO.

    It is difficult to find a reliable source of info for marijuana use in other countries. There are numerous websites advocating liberalization and fewer against liberalization.

    One difference between the U.S. and some European countries is the lack of accessible/affordable drug treatment programs.

    Mental illness and drug addiction are among the most challenging issues to deal with in young people. As a society we have moved away from acceptance of smoking tobacco. It doesn't make sense to me to take the opposite approach with marijuana.

  • Earl Sandy, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 9:20 p.m.

    Q: How many people have died as a direct result of smoking tobacco?
    A: Over 100,000 per year for decades.

    Q: How many people die every year directly from alcohol consumption?
    A: Over 20,000.

    Q: How many deaths have been caused directly by marijuana?
    A: Zero.

    Q: Which of the above three are physically addictive?
    A: Tobacco and alcohol. Marijuana is not physically addictive

    Q: Why are tobacco and alcohol legal (and considered "cool"), while marijuana is grouped with heroin and meth as a dangerous controlled substance?
    A: You tell me (it's all about money and power).

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 7:22 p.m.

    I never claimed (or never meant to claim) that marijuana has no harmful effects, I'm only arguing that it causes less harm than cigarettes. Considering what you say about marijuana (which I will assume to be accurate) versus what I know about tobacco-related death statistics, in my view (this is a rather subjective thing when comparing two different types of harm) tobacco is worse.

  • Bebyebe UUU, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 7:19 p.m.

    "I have no doubt that sucking smoke into a perfectly good set of lungs is good for them. "

    Are you ready to do something about the air quality in SLC during an inversion?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 7:17 p.m.

    Truthseeker | 3:05 p.m. Feb. 2, 2012
    SLO, CA
    LDS Liberal

    IMO, if marijuana is to be used for medicinal purposes, it ought to be sold in pharmacies, dose specific and presecription required as with other drugs. While decriminalizing it, ie. imposing significant fines rather than jail for possession, prison for illegal growing operations, might be an option, I am against wholesale legalization.
    Marijuana, as Mormon Conservative points out, can have adverse mental and physical health effects. I am concerned about the increasing availability and usage particularly for the youth.


    Agreed, I signed the petition and voted for medical MJ in Washington State. Like California, sold in Pharmacies, Taxed and Regulated hawkisly by the Government.

    Personally, I'm against recreational use - but I feel it falls equal to Alcohol and Tobacco. So, if they are legal, so should MJ.

    And if Health is the issue,
    our unhealthy diets of Sugars and Fats cause 10 Million times the deaths due to obesity and Heart disease that MJ ever could --

    Are you proposing we eliminate Junkfoods on account of Health? Same thing.

    BTW - if you're LDS,
    the Word of Wisdom condemns poor diets.
    Should fat Mormons be allowed in Temples?

  • Bebyebe UUU, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 7:17 p.m.

    Legalize it.
    Grow it.
    Sell it.
    Tax it.

    It's not an LDS moral issue. It is not a hot drink or tobacco.

    Feb. 2, 2012 6:46 p.m.

    There is this argument that marijuana is dangerous because it is a gateway to more dangerous illicit drugs. However, it is actually quite the opposite. If the numbers support that argument I would venture an educated guess and say it is only because marijuana is easier to obtain. In Holland, where despite the easy availability, marijuana prevalence among 12 to 18 year olds in Holland is only 13.6 percent - well below the 38 percent use-rate for American high school seniors (norml.org). In the United States, the claim that marijuana acts as a gateway to the use of other drugs serves mainly as a rhetorical tool for frightening Americans into believing that winning the war against heroin and cocaine requires waging a battle against the casual use of marijuana

  • Shelby17 RIVERTON, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 5:53 p.m.

    I have a chronic pain condition that started when I was 17 years old. I wake up in pain every day. I don't take any pain killers. I curb my pain with (gasp) diet and exercise. You see, I'd rather feel pain than feel nothing at all. Seems to me that too many people turn to too many numbing substances for problems they could solve by better habits. Marijuana is only part of the picture of a society dependent on substances for day-to-day functioning and even happiness. A lot of people waste their breath screaming for "freedom" to do things they know aren't good for them.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Feb. 2, 2012 5:52 p.m.


    Sorry, gotta disagree.
    Yes tobacco is dangerous to one's physical health increasing the incidence of cancer, emphysema etc.

    But marijuana can be harmful to one's brain. Several studies have shown that in vulnerable groups it is associated with earlier manifestation of paranoid schizophrenia and other mental disorders. Also, a recent study published in Archives of General Psychiatry found:

    Ingesting THC brought about irregular activity in two regions of the brain (the striatum and the lateral prefrontal cortex) that are key to the way people perceive their surroundings. THC seemed to boost the brain's responses to otherwise insignificant stimuli, while reducing response to what would typically be seen as significant or salient.

    In other words, under the influence of THC, healthy individuals might give far more importance to details in their environment than they would have without the chemical in their brain.

    THC also prompted a significant uptick in paranoid and delusional thinking, the authors said, and the more that "normal" brain responses were set off-kilter, the more severe the paranoid or even psychotic reaction.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 4:44 p.m.

    RedShirt | 12:27 p.m. Feb. 2, 2012
    USS Enterprise, UT
    TO "LDS Liberal" I am beginning to think that you and your friends don't read enough.


    And what's with you?

    I thought you were a Free Market Capitalist,
    Get the Government out of the way,
    Smaller Government offices,
    Stop killing business with Federal regulations, sort?

    Bending the rules to suit a bias based only with the Word of Wisdom is a Theocratic Oligarchy.

    BTW - My friend who is a Doctor, can't even "suggest" using it, for the same reason he can't "suggest" common herbs, vitamins or washing in a river 7 times.

    But like I've said -- Canada isn't a problem, but everything South of the border is.

    Just like America's failure with Conservative's "Prohibition" experiment with the XVIII ammendment, when the gangs won.
    Until the repeal with the XXI ammendment when America won, were the gangs beaten.

    Try addressing the REAL problem, not the imaginary boogieman under the stairs.

    Tax it,
    Regulate it.

    The real war, and the real drugs ruining lives and families are the more powerful and addictive Pharmaceuticals.
    Especially with good "Mormons".
    ...and Utah is No. 1

    But, you're somehow still OK with that?

  • Riles Midway, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 3:59 p.m.

    For so many reasons already stated in other comments, this article is a complete fail.

    The editorial staff takes the well-trodden road of moralizing with opinion unsubstantiated by any facts. Lines like "we shouldn't compare marijuana prohibition with alcohol prohibition, because we said so" (paraphrased of course) don't do much to convince me. How about going into the specific reasons you oppose legalization and actually state some facts to back up your position.

    This article did absolutely nothing to advance the discourse. Poorly thought out and poorly written.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Feb. 2, 2012 3:05 p.m.

    LDS Liberal

    I did a cursory look at marijuana laws around the world. In the vast majority of countries it is illegal. Canada permits marijuana use for medicinal purposes and one needs to have a govt. permit to grow it. The Netherlands has had a more permissive approach to MJ usage in terms of people being able to purchase and use it in specialized "coffeeshops." Personal usage outside of "coffeeshops" is illegal.

    IMO, if marijuana is to be used for medicinal purposes, it ought to be sold in pharmacies, dose specific and presecription required as with other drugs. While decriminalizing it, ie. imposing significant fines rather than jail for possession, prison for illegal growing operations, might be an option, I am against wholesale legalization.
    Marijuana, as Mormon Conservative points out, can have adverse mental and physical health effects. I am concerned about the increasing availability and usage particularly for the youth.

  • Earl Sandy, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 2:13 p.m.

    The question isn't whether or not marijuana is unhealthy. Is anyone really questioning that? To dismiss legalization because it's bad for you is totally inconsistent and disingenuous. The question is what will happen to the war on drugs, to the prison population, to big pharma and the ever-increasing police state? That's who's really worried about legalization. It's a cash cow for government/law-enforcement/big pharma complex.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Feb. 2, 2012 1:40 p.m.

    Au contraire, maintaining the legal prohibition on marijuana is against common sense. It is less addictive than alcohol and nowhere near as harmful as tobacco, yet both are legal. MJ has a perfectly legitimate medical use, particularly for people who are allergic to painkilling medications.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 1:21 p.m.

    I suppose our Socialist enemies to the north [Canada] makes the perfect example of a Civilization abruptly coming to an end.

    The Apocolypse has arrived!
    Armegeddon at any moment!
    Anarchy and a complete collapse of Society!

    Marijuana has been legal there for decades.
    So that can't possible be an issue.

    The problems we have with marijuana come from the South of our Borders, not North.
    And it's all about Capitalism, $$$, a market, and what else, "business" - in this case illegal.

    The boogieman is all in your head.

    Legalize it,
    Tax it,
    if the incentive is gone, so is the problem with the Drug cartel who capitalize on it.

  • a bit of reality Shawnee Mission, KS
    Feb. 2, 2012 1:19 p.m.

    Legalizing marijuana would:

    1- Make America more free

    2- Decrease government expenses and the size of government--less expenses for finding, prosecuting and imprisoning pot-heads

    3- Increase government revenue by taxing the distribution of the product

    4- Reduce other taxes because of the decrease in the cost of government and the increase in revenue

  • MormonConservative A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:33 p.m.

    Re: Midvaliean | 11:58 a.m. Feb. 2, 2012
    @MormonConservative There is not a physical addiction to marijuana. Its just not there.

    Reply: Tell that to Ron Paul, he'll believe you, I know better. A physical addiction to Cannabis sativa. The effects of cannabis are caused by cannabinoids, most notably the chemical substance tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Cannabis has both psychological and physiological effects on the human body. Concerns have been raised about the potential for long-term cannabis consumption to increase risk for schizophrenia, bipolar disorders, and major depression. The majority of users smoke marijuana in hand-rolled cigarettes known as joints, among other names. Some use pipes or water pipes known as bongs. Marijuana cigars known as blunts have also become popular. Marijuana use impairs an individuals ability to form memories, recall events and shifts concentration from one thing to another. THC also upsets coordination and balance by binding to receptors in the cerebellum and basal ganglia, parts of the brain that regulate balance, posture, coordination of movement, and reaction time. Through its effects on the brain and body, marijuana intoxication can cause accidents. In many of these cases, alcohol is discovered as well.

    My views.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:30 p.m.

    "If it did, it would learn that almost every addict who's life has been ruined by meth, cocaine, or heroin started down the path to addiction by using marijuana. If it hadn't been for marijuana, they wouldn't be addicts today."

    But here's the thing about that... is it really marijuana that is the cause of that? Or is it the fact that marijuana is illegal? Meth, cocaine, and heroin are all heavy, dangerous drugs. By comparison marijuana is tame, even doing less harm than cigarettes. But it's illegal so to get it those people have to commit a crime to obtain it. Now is it the marijuana itself that leads to other heavy drug use, or is it the fact that they obtained an illegal drug (thus having some sort of connection to drug dealers one way or another) that in the grand scheme of things didn't harm them and perhaps made them more likely to purchase other wares?

    Basically what I'm saying is that if marijuana were legal and tobacco illegal, I believe that tobacco would be the "gateway drug" marijuana is by virtue of being the "safest illegal drug".

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:27 p.m.

    TO "LDS Liberal" I am beginning to think that you and your friends don't read enough.

    According to the DEA website, there is an approved medical form of marijuana that Doctors can prescribe. It is called Marinol. It isn't a perfect medication, but it works for many patients and does not have some of the bad side effects that smoking marijuana has.

    Maybe you should ask your doctor friend if he likes prescribing medications that the dosage cannot be controlled.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:26 p.m.

    Marijuana is safer than cigarettes so the only logical options are to legalize marijuana, or ban cigarettes. I don't care what side someone falls on, but favoring the status quo is just silly, inconsistent, and illogical.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:14 p.m.

    More potent MJ is an unintended side effect of criminalizing it.

    You should read Michael J. Pollan's "Botany of Desire" for a history of how MJ became more potent as a direct result of our laws against it.

    Disclaimer: I'm in no way affiliated with Pollan.

  • MormonConservative A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:13 p.m.


    Why is it a mortal sin in Utah to smoke tobacco, in Parks etc. or anywhere else for that matter, but at a Pink Floyd concert, everyone seems to have rolling papers?.

    What about marijuana use in Utah?.

    Don't even try to hide the truths.

    Facts: Utah wilderness becoming a hot spot for marijuana plantations. Last year, authorities seized approximately 80,000 marijuana plants throughout Utah. Drug agents admit they have to rely on tips, because drug cartels grow the pot in remote locations that typically only hikers or hunters would ever stumble upon. The DEA believes that more Mexican drug cartels are coming to Utah to grow marijuana. They cite increased pressure from police and rival growers in other states. By May of last year, several grow sites were raided, so it's possible many of these grow areas are already underway. Deseret News Published: Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012, Ogden was believed to have a marijuana grow operation in his basement. Police were seen taking fluorescent lights and large PVC pipes out of Matthew Stewart's house following the Wednesday night shooting on Jackson Avenue.

    Today's marijuana is up to 10 times stronger than the marijuana of decades past.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 12:06 p.m.

    I don't use marijuana and never have. That said, the "War on Drugs" has been a massive failure. I'd rather see it legalized and regulated. Of course, that will wad the panties of the pearl clutchers in the world.

  • Midvaliean MIDVALE, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 11:58 a.m.

    @MormonConservative There is not a physical addiction to marijuana. Its just not there. Not one person gets the sweats or shakes for detoxing from marijuana. Sorry pal.

  • MormonConservative A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Feb. 2, 2012 11:47 a.m.

    What about marijuana use in Utah?. Anyone who says that marijuana is not addictive has obviously never spent an anxiety wracked sleepless night, battling incredible cravings to use. Marijuana isn't meth, but the detox is real, and it's tough enough to keep a lot of people using for a lot longer than they'd like to. Today's marijuana is up to 10 times stronger than the marijuana of decades past and with increased potency comes increased addictive properties. Much of our social perception about the drug were formed in the days when it was pretty tough to get addicted to what was a pretty mild drug those days are gone, and addiction and detox are real. If you try to quit on your own and find that you cannot, you need to consider getting professional help for your addiction. There are thousands of people in drug rehabs nationwide for the abuse and addiction of marijuana, and there is no shame at all in getting help. What's this costing us?. Until its prohibition in 1937, extract of Cannabis sativa (marijuana) was one of the top three most prescribed medicines in the US. When it became illegal, its use is restricted.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    Feb. 2, 2012 11:42 a.m.

    The War on Drugs is what is murdering people. Lets end that.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Feb. 2, 2012 11:35 a.m.

    Re: lds4gaymarriage | 10:12 a.m. Feb. 2, 2012
    "A recent study showed that moderate pot use does NOT harm the lungs"

    I have no doubt that sucking smoke into a perfectly good set of lungs is good for them. It probably adds years to lives of people who smoke pot ..... in moderation of course.

  • Midvaliean MIDVALE, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 10:21 a.m.

    John Charity Spring would have us believe that all hard drug users started with marijuana. Well sir the number just dont' correlate. If marijuana caused people to use other drugs then we might see other, harder drugs being used in higher numbers but we dont'. Users of hard drugs are a much smaller segment of the population. And there is no science that can back up your statement. There is science that can back up mine, that marijuana does not cause people to use hard drugs.
    And that being said, hard drugs produce some pretty bad affects. But I think many people use cocaine and herion and do not ruin their lives. Hence the fact that those drugs are sold and people buy them. If everyone who used cocaine ended up homeless and in jail the popularity of the drug would cease. But the FACTS are many people use hard drugs and do not ruin their lives.
    John Charity Spring uses hearsay and propaganda and thinks this is a proper substitute for facts. Lets really get educated on drug use.
    All the drug courts tell me is that people still have their lives ruined by law enforcement and not drugs

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 10:19 a.m.

    We already have recreational use of pot by anyone who wants to. We're just wasting resources trying to make ourselves feel all moral and good by fighting it, all the while in denial.

  • lds4gaymarriage Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 10:12 a.m.

    Regular pot use is far less harmful to people than the regular use of soda or double bacon cheeseburgers. A recent study showed that moderate pot use does NOT harm the lungs. Many conservatives ridiculed those advocating "Fat Police" - banning certain fats in cooking. Banning pot is the same mindset..we think it's best for society so you have to obey us and you'll be punished if you don't.

    Satan also believed in using force to get people to live as they should. He didn't want people to be free to choose for themselves and receive the natural consequences for their choices.

    There is absolutely NO reason to ban pot for medical use. Cocaine is used. Dangerously strong drugs are used. A comparitively mild drug like pot should be a no brainer...especially for those fighting the nausea of Chemotherapy. So many people wither away because they can't keep food down and become weaker and weaker. Those opposing medical marijuana who have to go through that would experience poetic justice.

  • KDave Moab, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 9:18 a.m.

    I am addicted to food, gotta have it every day. I have never stolen or robbed anyone in order to feed my habit. It is easy and relatively cheap to obtain.


  • Shawnm750 West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 8:54 a.m.

    @Mark 1 - True, it is not the government's business what you do with your body, but when someone becomes an addict, and they waste all of their money on drugs, they usually turn to crime as a means of getting more money. They either steal from relatives, or when that doesn't work, they start robbing strangers or even businesses. On this rare occasion, I actually completely agree with John Charity Spring. Drug dealers will not suddenly become licensed individuals, and so law enforcement will still be chasing the same people. Even if you regulate the potency, people will still make stronger versions to sell illegally. And even at the lower doses, they'll still be addicting and we'll still have crimes motivated by drug addiction.

    Society gains nothing by legalizing marijuana, or any other illegal narcotic. And just like marijuana itself, such a law would become a gateway law. You'd have activists for controlled distribution of meth, or any number of other drugs, claiming that those drugs can be just as beneficial as marijuana. Where does it end?

  • malcolmkyle NEW YORK, NY
    Feb. 2, 2012 8:36 a.m.

    In addition to the many societal costs of prohibition, it has a long history of driving the spread of harder or more dangerous drugs.

    * Poppies to morphine to heroine to krokodil
    * Coca to cocaine to crack
    * Ephedra to ephredrine to speed to methamphetamine
    * Marijuana to skunk to dangerous synthetic concoctions such as 'spice' or 'bath salts'
    * Mushrooms to ecstasy to 2CB/designers

    At every step the reasons for the rise in popularity of the new form of the drug are one or more of the following:

    * It may easier to smuggle.
    * It may be more addictive, thus compelling the buyer to return more frequently.
    * It may be cheaper to produce therefore yielding more profit.
    * Like a game of "whack a mole" a shutdown of producers in one area will mean business opportunities for another set of producers with a similar product.

    Prohibition's distortion of the immutable laws of 'supply and demand' subsidizes organized crime, foreign terrorists, corrupt cops & politicians and feeds the prejudices of self-appointed culture warriors. So called Tough-On-Drugs politicians have happily built careers on confusing drug prohibition's horrendous collateral damage with the substances that they claim to be fighting, while the big losers in this battle are everybody else, especially taxpayers.

    How come so many of us have been deluded into believing that big government is the appropriate response to non-traditional consensual vices?

    Imagine if we were to chop down every single tree on the planet as a response to our failure to prevent tree-climbing accidents. That's what our misguided drug policy looks like. Isn't it time we all stood up and told the government we're tired of being beaten and jailed so that pharmaceutical companies can poison and kill us for obscene profits?

    Prohibition Prevents Regulation : Legalize, Regulate and Tax!

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 8:17 a.m.

    I have a friend who is a Doctor.

    He gets frustrated because he can perscribe Oxycodon, Vicadin, and even pure Cocaine --
    Meanwhile, the Pharmaceutical industry is propsing and new drug, 10 times more powerful than Hydrocodon....people are already robbing Pharmacies for the old kind, and estamites are the street value for the new one will be 50 times more than than the old stuff.

    Yet - he can't write a scrip or even "suggest" the use of common weed.

    This is all about big Corporations, annual sales, and maintaining a monopoly on a market than it is about healing the sick or aleviating pain and suffering.

    Feb. 2, 2012 8:17 a.m.

    We are in our current situation because of the war on drugs. Illegal drugs haven't gone away. We have only created black markets and crime. If in the USA we believe in liberty and freedom, we have a right to be stupid. As long as you don't harm others no crime is being committed. It is not the governments business what I do with my body.

    More problems are created by trying to control and dictate good behavior; instead of teaching people healthy activities and persuading through 'moral-suation.'

    We also ban drinking alcohol under the age of 21. Yet on college campuses across the nation every weekend underage students manage to binge drink without any regard to the law. Banning behavior seems only to increase the banned behavior.

  • Midvaliean MIDVALE, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 6:50 a.m.

    This article is full of propaganda. For example, if its legal stronger strains will be made.
    Alcohol shows us people DO NOT want the strongest. We have Everclear, which is 90% alcohol, why is that not the drink of choice for everyone?
    Most like beer and wine, watered down versions of alcohol.
    Same can be said of cocaine when it was legal, they made Coca Cola.
    This statement: "Marijuana is a mind-altering and addictive substance that is detrimental to health" is not backed up at all. Just a statement, that is arguably false.

  • John Charity Spring Back Home in Davis County, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 6:39 a.m.

    When condsidering whether to legalize marijuana, it would be helpful for the legislature to spend a day observing drug court. If it did, it would learn that almost every addict who's life has been ruined by meth, cocaine, or heroin started down the path to addiction by using marijuana. If it hadn't been for marijuana, they wouldn't be addicts today.

    In addition, the legislature should spend a day observing district court. There, it would learn that the vast majority of forgeries, thefts, and burglaries are committed by drug addicts. Legalizing drugs would create more addicts, which in turn would lead to more of these drug-related crimes.

    Finally, it is unreasonable to expect that the same drug dealers who now murder, assault, and extort to distribute their product will suddenly become law abiding citizens if it is legalized. Clearly, they will not change their criminal ways. They will continue their activities to sell their product, whether legal or not.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Feb. 2, 2012 4:56 a.m.

    There used to be a public service announcement on TV showing a young man who had done nothing with his life. The ad then stated something to the effect of "Marijuana, it can make nothing happen to you too."

    That has been my experience with the drug. Acquaintances and family members who have been consistent smokers have little drive and little success in life.

    Also, the marijuana of today is stronger than what was available a few decades ago. The plants have been refined for potency.

    Do I think it is the most dangerous drug out there? No. But we have been fooled into thinking it has no dangers. That is false.

  • David King Layton, UT
    Feb. 2, 2012 2:13 a.m.

    It's easy to say "marijuana is bad, outlaw it", but what have we gained from our "war on drugs"? Have we made our streets safer, or have we instead encouraged drug profiteering, border violence, and corruption among law enforcement? Have we rehabilitated addicts, or locked thousands of non-violent offenders away in overcrowding prisions? Have we decreased use, or merely increased profits for the drug lords? Have we focused on all those who die from addictions to tobacco, or have we just spent time on drugs that aren't seen as socially acceptable? Was the 1937 prohibition of marijuana based on measured debate and scientific research, or hurried through Congress backed by propaganda and misinformation?

    It's time to drop our visceral opposition of marijuana and get down to a serious debate of the facts. Is our current policy working? Are we helping addicts or driving them into the shadows and lives of crime? I personally believe that most addictions should be treated as medical problems. Let's have more rehabilitation and less incarceration.