Sunday, March 8, 2009

America's Dilemma Part I: Shall We Legalize Pot...Or Not?

As a breast cancer survivor...two years now...I want to tell you that I never used, or considered using, marijuana. I remember walking up and down isles in the grocery store looking for the item that would "set well" on my stomach that day. One day it would be one thing and the next day it would be something else, but on bad days...watermelon was always a winner. I appreciate Obama's efforts to want cancer patients to feel better when the nausea strikes, but the legalization of marijuana, even for medical purposes, makes me queasy. I am going to focus my next few blogs on the controversial topic. Did you know that according to government studies, that almost 3o% of America’s teenagers are smoking marijuana? That means that a higher percent are friends of those who smoke pot! Oh, sure, some might say…What’s the harm once in a while? Well, it is true that side-effects decrease after three to four hours, however, it is stored in your system for up to 24 hours afterwards, thus you are “impaired” for many hours after the much sought after “high” has worn off. I am just wondering if you would want your child (it’s not just for teenagers or adults anymore) to walk around town, given the sexual predator rate we face today, with his/her defenses down and inhibitions freed? Pot has a very active ingredient called THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) which can cause the following physiological effects: rapid heart rate, increased blood pressure, increased rate of breathing, red eyes, dry mouth, increased appetite ("the munchies"), and slowed reaction time. Psychological effects include: a euphoric “stoned” state (the reason for most smokers). Other short-term psychological effects of pot include: a distorted sense of time, paranoia, invincible or "random" thoughts, short-term memory loss, and anxiety and depression. Which “high” teenager would you rather drive the car home? The friend or your little darling? How many of you know cigarette smokers who have tried (and tried) to quit? There are risks associated with increased marijuana use and many leading experts in the medical field are starting to get onboard with the lung cancer possibility for “pot-heads”. Now here is what I have never understood. If you can smoke a turkey or ham then why couldn’t logical thinkers come up with the “smoking” process in our lungs? Here’s one for people seeking heirs…heavy marijuana use can actually lower a man’s testosterone levels. Yes, even sperm count (and quality) can be lowered! Libido (sexual drive) is also problematic. I guess there are always male enhancement drugs. Whether or not the medical profession wants to claim pot as a “stepping-stone” to other drugs...for now...two things are clear. Pot smokers are more apt to use other types of drugs after trying marijuana and the drug is addictive. WE THE PEOPLE are smart enough to see where this "pipe dream" is going!

Note: When America opens Marijuana Cafes (like Amsterdam) we will really have a hole in our dyke!

May God bless America...and may America deserve it!

Zanne Booker 03-09-09