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Radical Rant: Marijuana—The Worst Drug Ever!

Russ Belville

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Just stop it already.

You there. Yes, you, the person who keeps insisting that adults should continue to be punished for using marijuana.

Nobody’s buying your scaremongering anymore.

The last vestiges of your 80-year propaganda campaign against humankind’s most complementary plant ring more hollow with every passing month.

This latest move by the FDA to approve amphetamines in gummy candy form for kids may have driven the stake through your most effective fright: “But what about the children?!?”

Really? You want to keep scaring us about the pot gummy bears sold in an adults-only store where IDs are checked, worried that we may leave them out for the unsuspecting youngsters, or, more wickedly, we may place them in their Halloween bounty… after the FDA has approved gummy speed?

For decades, you’ve held marijuana up to an absurd double-standard that no other drug must endure, and the general public is finally beginning to notice.

For instance, you tell us it would be the worst thing ever if marijuana retailers in legal states were to advertise their products using cartoons, because that would make marijuana appealing to the children.

Yet, you can’t make it through an hour of television without seeing that cartoon umbrella or cartoon robe for the terribly depressed cartoon lady who needs the new depression pill to help the old depression pill she’s already taking that isn’t working. Or the cartoon innards of the cartoon man who needs a new digestion pill to counteract his lousy diet. Or the cartoon snot or cartoon toenail fungus or the cartoon bee… it’s getting more and more difficult to find a prescription ad without cartoons or CGI.

You tell us that marijuana is just too dangerous for the kids, even in the states where it is legal, even when those states require two doctors for a pediatric recommendation.

But then the FDA goes ahead and approves the use of OxyContin for children as young as 11. The kid with the Oxy prescription could then legally consume his medicine at school under the supervision of the school nurse, while the parents of the kid who needs medical marijuana have to go to the statehouse and get a bill passed to allow them to come to school and administer a few drops of non-psychoactive CBD oil.

You tell us there just isn’t enough research on the use of marijuana to know whether it is truly safe.

Yet when we go out to the government’s online database of scientific research and type in “marijuana,” we get over 23,450 results returned.

Adderall—the drug not too dissimilar from the gummy speed mentioned above—returns 188 results. You know, it’s that amphetamine for kids that was prescribed 1.3 million times in 1996 and is now prescribed over 16 million times today?

OxyContin (and its generic oxycodone) that we’re approving for pre-teens, returns 3,124 results, but only 156 of them have anything to do with children.

We’ve got over 7,000 years of historic human use of marijuana with zero confirmed deaths by overdose and over 23,450 studies, and you want us to fear it more than the pharmaceutical meth and pharmaceutical heroin invented in the past century that you’re willing to prescribe to children after fewer than 200 studies?

Nowhere is the absurd double-standard for marijuana more apparent than in comparison to how you treat alcohol and tobacco.

The marijuana stores in the legal states must be 1,000 feet away from anywhere children might frequent, you require. There must be opaque windows so children cannot see the debauchery inside, you demand. Nobody may consume the marijuana inside because stoned people might get behind the wheel and drive dangerously, you insist.

Alcohol, however, can be sold in the grocery store, behind huge sports-themed cut-out displays (don’t worry, the kids hate sports, right?). It can be advertised in every medium. Not only can there be windows to see the frivolity inside the bars, pubs and taverns, but patrons can also bring the alcohol outside on the public patio for consumption in full view of the public. And you’ll provide them unsupervised parking lots for their cars and just trust that they’ll accurately determine for themselves if they are unimpaired enough to drive.

In most of the legal marijuana states, there is still a battle ongoing over pot lounges. You insist that such places shall not exist, both for the aforementioned danger of stoned drivers and for the newfound supposed danger of secondhand cannabis smoke. Yes, we may smoke pot, but smoke is an evil dirty thing that you demand must be relegated to our private homes and nowhere else.

Tobacco smokers know how we feel, because you’ve been ratcheting down their freedoms lately, too. But the tobacco smokers are at least allowed to be seen in public in specially-designated smoking areas. In some states, like Oregon, the Clean Air Act that outlaws indoor smoking has exceptions that allow for indoor cigar bars for smokers to gather and socialize.

So every rule you come up with to deny marijuana is a rule you’re willing to overlook for every other drug out there that is far more dangerous to the user and society than marijuana.

Fortunately, the public is finally catching on. Quinnipiac just released a national poll showing 54 percent of American voters support marijuana legalization.

It was the 10th straight poll in two years that has shown majority support for marijuana legalization. It has been three-and-a-half years since any national poll didn’t show more support for legalization than opposition. And support for medical marijuana is solidly above 80 percent in any demographic you care to ask.

So just stop it with the reefer madness already. You’re embarrassing yourself.

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