Forum: Arts / Debates

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Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By amichelle523member has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Sun Oct 17, 2010 10:57 PM

I was wondering what everyone's feelings are on the decriminalization of marijuana in the U.S., especially in the light of Prop 19 in California coming up. I'd also like to hear points of view from people in other countries where marijuana is already decriminalized. I am passionately pro-decriminalization, with the following reasons:

1) Our prisons are SEVERELY overcrowded with non-violent criminals, and we're wasting tons of money and manpower on that

2) Decriminalizing it would bring down the violence that is now associated with it because of the shady ways some people have to go about obtaining it (i.e., they have to evade the law)

3) It would create jobs and taxing it would bring in revenue

4) It is an excellent alternative to pain management and other issues with far fewer side affects (I struggle with severe anxiety issues and have been given high doses of VERY addictive benzodiazepines before with terrifying side effects)
www.webmd.com . . .
www.painjournalonline.com . . .(02)00400-1/abstract

5) There have been studies showing it has protective factors against diseases such as Alzheimers
ncbi.nlm.nih.gov . . .

6) The "War on Drugs" as begun by Nixon has more or less brainwashed (I don't want to use that term but am too tired to think of something else, haha) the U.S. into thinking that the use of marijuana will turn you into a useless burnout, which is rarely true. I'm not going to say never, everyone knows those people. But quite frankly, more users are those using it for pain/medical management, doctors, lawyers, academicians, and your average Joe. And they seem to be doing just fine.

Some links:
norml.org
^a good site for keeping up to date on media on decriminalization, especially good for all the news on Prop 19 right now

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov . . .
^marijuana and cognition

www.stumbleupon.com . . .
^kind of trippy/weird but AWESOME video

prosebeforehos.com . . .
^good info, trying to find where they got it from still though, but seems to match up with what I generally find, so it's at least fairly reliable.

www.soyouwanna.com . . .

www.petadopt.com . . .
^And some pictures of cute puppies, just for good measure. I mean, who doesn't love cute puppies?

59 Replies to Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19

re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By DefyingGravityPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 02:44 AM
I am 100% pro legalization and 100% against Prop 19. For background, I'm a way-left Berkeley-liberal Californian.

The main reasons are a) We've already essentially decriminalized it — it's the lowest of the low misdemeanors b) (This is the biggie for me) They currently have no way of enforcing the legal limit of marijuana that can be in your system - Heck, they haven't even set a legal limit for California, let alone figured out how to test for that legal limit. What's the .08 equivalent of marijuana? When can you legally drive? If I were to smoke a joint right now, I'd be 100% fine to go to work tomorrow morning. The THC urine test would still detect marijuana. How will they test my highness (or in this case, lowness)?

I understand that it would raise money for the state through taxes and de-populate our prisons (both of which are valid reasons that I support), but I'm much more concerned about public safety and creating a testable legal limit.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19 (karma: 3)
By TheMidlakeMusemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 05:40 AM
If it'll make pot heads shut up about decriminalization, I am ALL FOR IT.

Dani
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:02 AM
The fact that marijuana is illegal is a total joke. I am a non-smoker in total support of legalization. Prop 19 is a start, but I want to see nationwide legalization, not just decriminalization.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 07:22 PM
Interestingly enough, when I was doing intelligence support to DEA back in the early 90's in Washington, DC and when I worked in the embassy in Mexico City doing counternarcotics support, a lot of the DEA agents I worked with felt exactly the same way. Patroling marijuana took an inordinate amount of resources with little payback and a huge diversion of resources from enforcement of hard drugs.

Some of them were even for the legalization of all drugs with the bad stuff to be distributed at legal clinics at cost. The belief among these agents was that this would reduce the criminal element in drugs because social and government agencies would undercut the exaggerated prices and profits criminals make simply because it is illegal. The criminal factors which are spawned by drug distribution is more dangerous than the drugs themselves.

Lowering the price would put the cartels out of business.

One agent, a savvy veteran, told me that he would go to the head of the government of each narcotics producing country and say "give me an audited accounting of what value narcotics precursors (i.e. cocoa plants, poppies etc.) contribute to your country's GNP. OK here is a foreign aid check for it...it's ours now. Now marijuana can be grown almost anywhere, but the precursors to hard drugs such as cocoa plants (this is a different species from the stuff that makes chocolate...or so I've been told)can only grow in rather limited areas of the world. Then the US would process some for clinics and burn the rest. At least that was HIS theory.

Jon
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By schuhplattlerPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 09:57 PM
Impose a mandatory death sentence for anyone caught driving, piloting, boating, or operating any publicly dangerous conveyance-type machinery while on pot, and I'll be in favor of legalizing its sale and private use. I have seen drivers on pot, and they were that dangerous.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By kandykanePremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:00 PM
Edited by kandykane (157761) on 2010-10-18 22:01:06
Jon, you'd think that they would have learned that lesson from Prohibition.

It's staggering to think of the untold billions of dollars spent on this 'war on drugs'. A war that cannot be won.

kk~
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Brittanymember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:33 PM
Impose a mandatory death sentence for anyone caught driving, piloting, boating, or operating any publicly dangerous conveyance-type machinery while on pot, and I'll be in favor of legalizing its sale and private use.


Um...yeah, they're definitely not going to have a death sentence for someone driving high (on pot...haha). That's ridiculous.

Everyone can probably assume they know how I feel about legalizing mary jane.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 10:59 PM
madmilt wrote:

Impose a mandatory death sentence for anyone caught driving, piloting, boating, or operating any publicly dangerous conveyance-type machinery while on pot, and I'll be in favor of legalizing its sale and private use. I have seen drivers on pot, and they were that dangerous.


We must know different types of people...my friends can barely motivate themselves to go to the kitchen while high. They're probably the safest drivers ever...10 MPH down back roads, convinced they're going to get caught.

(I'm kidding of course, I'm against DUIs...but I doubt driving high will be a more serious issue than driving drunk)
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19 (karma: 1)
By Cienmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Oct 18, 2010 11:09 PM
madmilt wrote:

Impose a mandatory death sentence for anyone caught driving, piloting, boating, or operating any publicly dangerous conveyance-type machinery while on pot, and I'll be in favor of legalizing its sale and private use. I have seen drivers on pot, and they were that dangerous.


Haaahahahah what? Do you get paid for every crazy thing you say? Lol.

I would prefer legalization (it's a freaking PLANT, the government could regulate it and really needs the income anyway, etc. etc.), but I guess decriminalization is a step in the right direction.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Heartmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Oct 19, 2010 09:51 AM
I actually don't support the legalization of marijuana. It's a relatively benign drug, but it's still a drug and it still has nasty side effects. It's been linked to mental illness and in particular, schizophrenia. It exacerbates already existing conditions and in some cases sparks conditions that weren't there previously. It causes paranoia and other unpleasant episodes. It can be an addictive drug - not physically, but mentally. It's difficult to quit.

It's not a good drug. Frequently, the argument will turn to "well, neither is alcohol or cigarettes." "It's bad, but we allow other bad things too" is NOT an acceptable argument, quite frankly.

At the very least, if it is made legal, I would expect the restrictions on it to be MUCH more hefty than they currently are in California. Pretty much anyone can get a prescription there. Doctors will give one to anyone who comes in with a made-up malady. One of my friends received a package from a friend in California - an underage friend - containing some hashish. This didn't fill me with confidence about the laws in California or the Post Office. Where were the drug-sniffing dogs?!!

I would also hope that they make smoking pot illegal. There's plenty of other ways to get THC into your system and smoking anything is not good for your health. Quite frakly I don't get why a cancer patient is all about smoking pot to reduce pain while simultaneously messing up their lungs. Don't you need those?




New Jersey recently made this legal, which was surprise to me, as we tend to be tightwads about everything. I just hope that the po-po keep a close eye on this.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Bridgetbeemember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Tue Oct 19, 2010 10:14 AM
'It's been linked to mental illness and in particular, schizophrenia. It exacerbates already existing conditions and in some cases sparks conditions that weren't there previously. It causes paranoia and other unpleasant episodes'

Actually, it is a huge misconception that cannabis causes these problems. It is linked to them, sure, and can trigger them in individuals who already had a genetic predisposition to them. But does it cause them? No. This is a big difference, scientifically speaking. I study neuroscience at university and I actually did a project about this recently, for which I did really quite well in (i.e. I wasn't talking total rubbish!). Consequently if anyone is interested I can post the studies I found on the subject. If not, carry on.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Munkensteinmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Oct 19, 2010 11:59 AM
We must know different types of people...my friends can barely motivate themselves to go to the kitchen while high. They're probably the safest drivers ever...10 MPH down back roads, convinced they're going to get caught.

(I'm kidding of course, I'm against DUIs...but I doubt driving high will be a more serious issue than driving drunk)

I know you're mostly joking, but I hate hearing that kind of joke, whether it's about people driving high or after having alcohol.

There have been quite a few sad incidents around here in the not so distant past...one of them, a woman drove high and swerved into somebody. I think they both survived with serious injuries. Another one involved a guy driving with his kid in the backseat...he swerved into another car, killing the driver, and injured his son severely enough to require hospitalization.

Nobody needs to drive while on any kind of substance...seems to me that most people can barely handle a vehicle while totally sober anyway.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Tue Oct 19, 2010 04:59 PM
I actually was paraphrasing my teacher, who is an old hippie. I have only ever known one person to drive under the influence, and I made my displeasure known. I'm 100% against DUIs and would never remain friends with someone who was so thoughtless.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Heartmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Oct 19, 2010 07:46 PM
It is linked to them, sure, and can trigger them in individuals who already had a genetic predisposition to them.

For all intents and purposes, if those problems weren't there before and cannabis brings them to light - isn't that the same as causing them?
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Cadbury_Eatermember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 06:32 AM
I agree with keeping it criminalized. Some people just seem to think it's a drug with no bad side affects. Sorry, it's still a drug that can cause issues in the community. It's a danger to allow people to use it.

People are exploited worldwide in the production of pot.

Ok, I know this is going to be turned onto what about alcohol, what about cigarettes etc. but whatever.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 08:32 AM
Edited by jazz_lover (99333) on 2010-10-20 08:36:09
I think for me, I am 100% for making it legal. I would personally never smoke, but I am very much for minimal government. I also know how much it costs for cops to go out into weed fields to go destroy the farms. It is very dangerous to the cops involved ( shootings happen regularly at these things). It also costs a LOAD money to go destroy the farms, which California just doesn't have. I mean, this isn't just a couple thousands of dollars, this is a HUGE amount of the budget. I think the cops should spend their time and money on more serious crimes, such as domestic abuse, rape, burglary etc. There is already SUCH a huge lack of budget for us. People are getting fired, there is a hiring freeze, some people are taking pay cuts etc. If we sustaine the man power to burn down the farms, we are going to have such a crappy police force in the next 5 years. Unless the budget turns around, although that happeneing is unlikely.

That being said, as Katie already said, I wonder how they are going to come up with a legal limit. I think they should treat being under the influence a like a DUI. To be honest, I think they should make the consequences of a DUI much stronger though. The first time is getting off with a slap on the wrist. ( Unless you are under 21. Then you get your licence taken away until 21.).

I also think they should not allow public smoking, as they do not allow being in public intoxicated; at least in California. If people stay at home and smoke a joke, don't drive, and don't have small children to effect with second hand smoke , I am all for it. Plus, if they ruin their lives, that is their problem, as long as they don't effect the public with their actions.

I think they should make the legal age 21.

Slighty off topic. I wonder if the people in SF who are barking about cig smoke are totally going to be ok with weed second hand. Hmmm
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Brittanymember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 08:43 AM
Edited by Brittany (36942) on 2010-10-20 08:43:55
I wonder how they are going to come up with a legal limit. I think they should treat being under the influence a like a DUI. To be honest, I think they should make the consequences of a DUI much stronger though.


Well, that's the problem. There is no test a cop can do that will tell if a driver is high or not. You can test for weed in the system, but that's not to say the driver is high at that moment.

Weed doesn't have levels of intoxication like alcohol where you have the BAC.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Cienmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 09:07 AM
Cadbury_Eater wrote:

I know this is going to be turned onto what about alcohol, what about cigarettes etc. but whatever.

"Whatever"? You can't really just put your side of a debate out there, and then go "well I know you're going to bring up flaws in my argument, but whatever." :?

So yeah--what about alcohol and cigarettes? Although weed can get you high, alcohol and cigarettes wreak FAR MORE havoc on your body. No, I'm not advocating anyone driving under any influence, but I honestly do not understand what the big freaking deal is about a PLANT. You want to tell me about drugs that damage communities? Talk to me about heroin, crack, meth, alcoholism.

And people are exploited mainly because weed production isn't governmentally regulated, because the government refuses to make it legal, even though they would probably make a crapload of money if it were.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Munkensteinmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 01:17 PM
No, I'm not advocating anyone driving under any influence, but I honestly do not understand what the big freaking deal is about a PLANT.

Um...tobacco is a plant? ;)
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Cienmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 01:53 PM
^Haha, I knew someone would bring that up. I see cigarettes as tobacco + a bunch of carcinogens and chemicals, though, whereas weed is just the plant. If there are any additives, they're not nearly as destructive as cigarettes.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Brittanymember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 01:57 PM
Edited by Brittany (36942) on 2010-10-20 13:58:17
The main component to weed is THC - Tetrahydrocannabinol, a chemical ;)

About 400 other chemicals join THC.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Cienmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 02:08 PM
Do you kind of know what I mean, though? Cigarettes are horrible for your body; they cause cancer, emphysema, and a host of other problems. Weed is weed--I've never heard of carcinogens and toxic substances being added to weed the way they are to tobacco.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By hylndlasmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 02:10 PM
CienPorCientoPAZ wrote:

If there are any additives, they're not nearly as destructive as cigarettes.


I think we all know that ciggys are horrible for you....but I think that's the first time I've heard someone say that cocaine, crack, PCP, or even embalming fluid which can be used to lace weed are not as dangerous as what's in ciggs. :O

Embalming fluid is toxic.......even the fact that it's sometimes put in weed by dealers should concern people.
re: Decriminalization of Marijuana/Prop 19
By Cienmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Wed Oct 20, 2010 02:14 PM
^Oh I didn't mean weed that's laced with things like that--unless all weed has crack and PCP in it, in which case I must live under a rock, cause I've never heard of laced weed being a widespread thing. ;) That's a different ball game, and I DO think that's as dangerous as cigarettes. When I say I don't think weed is as dangerous as cigarettes, I mean plain, unlaced-with-anything weed.
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