Comments about ‘In our opinion: Marijuana is still dangerous’

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Published: Saturday, Feb. 15 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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Sandy, UT

Marijuana is bad bad bad. Got it. So is alcohol. Got it. Now how about addressing the disastrous policy with the tragic misnomer "war on drugs?" It should be called "the war on the poor and minorities." Those are the real victims that the editors choose to ignore.

jack bauer21
ada, ID

First off, there is not one recorded death from marijuana overdose, you may call this hackneyed but it is true. Second off, ask yourself what you would rather have your 12th graders use, alcohol, tobacco or marijuana. In a utopia, drug use wouldn't exist, but this is not possible. Also, start stating the facts about alcohol use, it's just as harmful to your brain if not more. I hate these poorly biased articles written, by collectivists-in laymen's terms "squares". That is all!

Fairfax, VA

"It makes little sense for the nation to be systematically discouraging cigarette smoking, regulating trans fatty acids, limiting the size of soft drinks — all while many are turning a blind eye to the dangers of marijuana."

Which is why we shouldn't be discouraging cigarette smoking, we should be making smoking sections, we shouldn't be regulating fatty acids, or limiting soft drink sizes. We should let adults make adult decisions and stop trying to be their nanny!

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

"It's just an herb. It's OK. In fact, it's used for medical purposes . . ."

Like digitalis.

The concept that something is natural or occurs in nature and is therefore harmless is stunning.

On that basis Uranium would be safe.

Please do not confuse natural or occurring in nature with being safe. They are not the same.

Puyallup, WA

Cannabis is NOT addictive.
The article writer needs to go look up the definition of "addictive".
This paper won't tell the truth and won't even address those who are functioning at higher levels than possible on "drugs" and they run the gamut from psychiatric drugs that do massive damage to the painkillers that destroy bodies from the inside.
So many people walk and drive on dangerous drugs but this newspaper deems it necessary to vilify a simple plant that can only give good health and many productive products when used properly.
Cannabis isn't the villain here - people who are prejudiced without cause are.

gaithersburg, MD

even if what you are saying were true it still makes more sense to legalize, regulate, and tax it. the penalties for weed cost society far more than any real or perceived harms of the plant itself.

American Fork, UT

"If educated adults do not speak out about the real hazards, lives could be lost."
If that was a valid argument, we'd have gun control.

long beach, NY

"In our opinion marijuana is still dangerous". In MY opinion the real danger is the lies that you are perpetuating. I neither want nor need the government to tell me what I can and can not ingest. I am an adult and can make that decision for myself. I choose what I believe to be a safer alternative to the DANGEROUS "Legal" drugs that are forced on me by big pharma who are fighting tooth and nail to prevent me from having that choice. The danger is the "war" on the citizens of this so called "free" country who have been incarcerated at record numbers for making this same choice. I am hurting no one and should not be ashamed nor arrested for making what should be my right to choose. Stop trying to enforce the unenforcable and end this war!

bexar, TX

It's obvious that the author of this article is still under the thrall of past government propaganda. The issue here is not the relative dangers of using Cannabis, it is about the dangers of keeping current policies in place.
It's a simple fact that laws against Cannabis are far, far, FAR more harmful than the harms caused by the plant itself, This is not about "Is Cannabis use good?", it is about "are our policies hurting people for no good reason?". Far more people lose their lives as a result of the policies than lose their lives as a result of the plant.
We, as a country, have made criminals out of otherwise good, law-abiding people. This insanity has to stop.
It's like most other things in society, if you don't like it, don't use it. But lets stop demonizing those that choose to.

A Quaker
Brooklyn, NY

Until you're about 25, your brain is still developing. I do not believe that marijuana does any harm to adults over that age. I would caution those under that age that they should avoid regular exposure.

From about the age of 16 until about 30, I smoked cannabis regularly. The material available at the time wasn't as strong as what gets sold now, but we'd smoke enough to get pretty high. After my wife and I married, and I couldn't share the pleasant times with her due to her asthma, I gave it up. It's not addictive. There was no withdrawal or difficulty of any kind.

What I want to do is caution younger folk about what it does to developing brains. For a period of a few years after I stopped smoking cannabis, it seemed like development that should have happened when I was younger slowly resumed, with a clear increase of intellectual and emotional capacity, and maturity.

At no time, though, did the drug significantly impair my function. I made a wonderful and rewarding career in IT and have built assets for an affluent retirement.

West Richland, WA

How unfortunate that this type of chicken-little hysteria can still be offered as a legitimate position on marijuana, despite all the facts to the contrary.

All drugs can be abused. To single out a relatively benign intoxicant like marijuana and demonized it as if "Reefer Madness" was a documentary, is to reveal an dishonest agenda. Today, far more harm is caused by marijuana prohibition, than by the use of marijuana itself.

The best way to prevent drug abuse is with honest, credible and factual drug education. Only in a climate in which marijuana is viewed from a public health perspective, instead of a criminal justice perspective, can prevention efforts be effective.

salt lake city, UT

People are not dumb and teenagers aren't naive. I know Doctors, Lawyers and very sucessful businessmen who have smoked pot for over 40 years. The "refer madness" approach that this article takes and that many critics use is easily tossed aside by people with real life experiences to draw off. I'm not advocating pots usage or legilization I'm just pointing out that fear won't dissuade most people from trying or using. A better approach would be an honest discussion that would respect peoples right to choose what's best for themself.


The federal government still has marijuana listed as a schedule 1 drug. That is ignorant enough for me to wonder why that is.

Sioux Falls, SD

The author is correct in only one assertion in this story. Marijuana use among the young and still-being-educated is a problem. Learning IS impaired.
So it overall makes sense to regulate it much like alcohol. We can't keep it out of youths' hands altogether, but can do so much more effectively than allowing the current status quo to continue.
The only reason it has been a "gateway" drug is because the dealers who sell it also have other products they'd like to market. Neutralize the dealers by legalizing it.

Salt Lake City, UT

Dr. Lester Grinspoon spent decades studying the effects of marijuana. He found the claims in this article to be nonscientific and inaccurate.

In a recent interview (google it), Dr. Grinspoon rejected the claim marijuana is addictive, he pointed out that its effects on the ability to function are significantly less than alcohol. In the interview, he also pointed out that the drug itself is far less problematic than our societal, political and criminal response to it.

To the claim in this article that marijuana impairs brain function, that's not supported by science or experience. The late Carl Sagan use marijuana to unleash his creativity in thinking about scientific and social problems and his insights while high led to insights he used successfully in essays and lectures for many years.

It seems to me our current policy of criminalizing marijuana does more harm than the marijuana itself.

Salt Lake City, UT

I've never had much interest in pot, but you should keep some perspective here. Utah has the highest rate of anti-depression and anti-anxiety prescriptions in the nation. Why? Well, people are trying to cope with an increasingly difficult situation. Pot is an alternative. So maybe you ought to consider why the legal drugs are so attractive. It might make you a little more sympathetic.

Monrovia, CA

I agree that "educated individuals" need to speak out on this subject. However, don't expect anyone having even a basic knowledge of this plant and its effects to say something negative. It is becoming clearer by the day that we have been deceived regarding the many benefits of cannabis. Our constitutional rights have been systematically trampled upon for decades. Unfortunately for the few remaining prohibitionists, the more one knows, the more one becomes convinced that it must be legalized, and this without delay.

Sunnyvale, CA

I see several strange comments posted here. Just because marijuana may not be as bad for youth or people as alcohol in same cases or tobacco in other ways, does not mean we should promote it. Criminal justice laws and incarceration policies may need to be improved or revisited; however that is not best achieved by allowing or promoting unhealthy, unwise and dangerous practices that sound laws should discourage.

As cited, very many teenagers think that weed is just funny and harmless. In fact, strongly negative outcomes are related to it in lots of important areas--but that scene is often not viewable for years later. MJ has been a strong gateway drug to greater problems, and will surely continue to be so for decades.

If pot is medicinally beneficial, why hasn't the absolutely massive and profit-hungry pharma industry--with its hordes of hard-working PhDs--not released it as a prescriptive product? Likely it is because there are not actual medical benefits, in reality. Its legalization has been driven by adults who value pleasure over societal health and development. Its benefits do not nearly approach its costs of use and distribution in sundry critical aspects.

Garberville, CA

Cannabis is not physically addictive. I know plenty of people who have smoked pot for decades and decades and then stopped without any side affects. For some it is mentally addictive, but never physically. So quit lying, Deseret News. Papers are supposed to tell the truth based on fact. I want to concur with the complaints about this Nanny state. As pot is far less harmful in every way than driving, gun ownership, alcohol, cigarettes, and the worst legal addictive drug of all, sugar, it's time to decriminalize it. Time to break way from the racist, ignorant views of the reefer madness 1930's. In fact, Cannabis is the perfect nightcap after a stressful day. And some stats show drivers are actually safer on the road after smoking. Not that I'm recommending it. I'm just sayin'. And guess what the ground breaker is now: epileptic seizure are now confirmed to be reduced dramatically in children through cannabis use in a particular configuration, leading lawmakers in Georgia and Alabama to consider regulations of medical cannabis. Your writer is a caveman. Except that cavemen smoked pot. I'd suggest your writer try some and chill out.

Sunnyvale, CA

In this region, there are literally hundreds of home/building fires a year from 'medicinal' grow businesses; that was never predicted.

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