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Is marijuana illegalization a dangerous gateway law? Options
 
Loveall
#1 Posted : 6/19/2018 8:32:00 PM

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Over the decades we have seen schedule I illegalization of nature turn into zero tolerance draconian sentencing of citizens and extremely violent SWAT home invasions. We have also seen groundbreaking treatments and novel health mechanisms that (arguably) should have been found decades ago.

During this time, politicians have remained irrationally in favor of established Marijuana laws, clearly the grips of some kind of legislative reefer madness. There are sad examples of politicians being victims of their own madness and suffering from horrible diseases like Alzheimer's which may be helped by the natural plant.

So are marijuana laws a dangerous gateway to tyranynical legislatiion and delays in scientific research?

Any thoughts? This is what I think:

Marijuana illegalization is a dangerous gateway law
β€œ... (a) psychedelic substance occasionally causes psychotic behaviour in people who have not taken it.”
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Mitakuye Oyasin
#2 Posted : 6/19/2018 8:45:55 PM

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Yes. Cannabis laws and "drug" laws in the US have always been racist and have always targeted the middle and lower classes, not the wealthy. They have also always protected and boosted the sales of Big Pharma. All laws to make illegal nature and natural plants are abhorrent and should be removed from all law books.
Let us declare nature to be legitimate. All plants should be declared legal, and all animals for that matter. The notion of illegal plants and animals is obnoxious and ridiculous.
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Loveall
#3 Posted : 6/19/2018 9:04:24 PM

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God point, there are powerfull parts of society who have made a lot of money and/or grown under the rules set by these abhorrent laws. It is not in their interest for the laws to be deprecated as we increase our knowledge of nature (or at least become aware of how ignorant we are to think we can illegalize an entire plant).

That makes the laws lucratively addictive for powerful interests.

This seems to support the claim that marijuana laws are a dangerous gateway. We seem to have elucidated a specific (monetary) mechanism of addiction to these dangerous gateway laws.
β€œ... (a) psychedelic substance occasionally causes psychotic behaviour in people who have not taken it.”
Excerpt from a McKenna talk transcript / audio.
 
blue.magic
#4 Posted : 6/19/2018 11:23:44 PM

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Even if it is, without knowing how much and being confident for its real dangers, there is no justification for putting repressive law into action.

Unfortunately, it takes decades of hard work to make the laws more rational but just a single case of irresponsible use to trigger all the mass-medial-political hysteria Crying or very sad

100 cases of car accidents under influence of alcohol, many lethal, EVERY day = normal, okay

1 case of someone injuring himself under influence of LSD ONCE A YEAR = see? BAD drugs!! should be banned

...we are so biased I almost lose hope in the humanity.
 
dragonrider
#5 Posted : 6/20/2018 5:25:09 PM

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Talking about gateway laws: i fear that the criminalisation of tobacco may backfire on cannabis and other drugs.
Regardless of what you think of tobacco, many new laws are extremely illiberal. They completely deny any personal responsibility tobacco smokers have with regards to their own health and personall wellbeing.
Nobody realy dares to critisize these laws, because it's like a holy war and tobacco is evil and such.... but the idea that the government can decide what's best for you is realy dangerous imo.
 
dreamer042
#6 Posted : 6/20/2018 10:06:17 PM

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Loveall wrote:
Marijuana illegalization is a dangerous gateway law

100% Agreement.

Prohibition of cannabis set a number of troubling precedents for many of the irrational and dangerous beliefs and behaviors that are foundational to many modern policies:

It gives rise to the idea that nature can be prohibited or controlled in the first place. This is sheer conceit.

It enables unjust law enforcement practices criminalizing non-violent citizens who have caused no harm.

It creates and fuels and black markets, artificially inflating the value of cheap, abundant, and benign commodities (plants).

It enables organized crime syndicates to form in order to meet black market demand and provides an illicit income stream to these organizations.

It encourages criminal activity as a survival means through lost economic and educational opportunity due to involvement with the criminal justice system.

It blurs the lines between plants and drugs allowing for coca and poppy to be miscategorized alongside their refined derivatives (cocaine and heroin).

Unfortunately, these precedents have become so ingrained into modern policy that it is difficult or even impossible to go back and change or correct many of these errors. The recent trend toward leagalization and decrminalization has been fairly successful in stopping the criminalization of ordinary citizens and made a small dent in cartel-backed cannabis growing and distribution operations, which is good to see.

However, the current legalization protocols are still contributing to cannabis being a big money industry, concentrating wealth and power into the hands a few large organizations. It's still illegal to plant a cannabis plant openly in your backyard garden without fences and locks in most legal locales. Legalization as it stands is a step in the right direction, but it's a far cry from true cannabis freedom.
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null24
#7 Posted : 6/21/2018 8:06:12 AM

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If we are talking about the country that perfected slavery and that leads the world in drug consumption and incarceration; the land of the jailed and home of the terrified Amerikkka, there could be an argument made linking the mindset that made marijuana illegal in the first place to the law recently signed that sees so called illegal migrant children put in cages

So i don't know about the gateway. It's kind of a chicken and egg question now, purely academic, and the damage is done with decimated communities, tens of thousands lives and families destroyed and billions in lost potential dollars in local economies across the country. Now we are seeing glimpses of reason with several recreational legal states, which is great and we need to see that in the federal level but marijuana (ill)legalization is just the tip of the iceberg.

Activism is the new cool thing apparently and there are so many things to fight for and against in my country if we want to survive with any of the ideals that are increasingly becoming mythical that it was allegedly conceived and founded to achieve and not fall under our own internal pressures and divisions and xenophobic fear that saw pot made criminal in the early part of the twentieth century through the creation of the drug war late midcentury and the continued enforcement of the racist policies now.

EDIT: well, we gotta give a big hand to the rational lawmakers north of me in the great white north of Canada who have legalized rec weed for the entire country today.

6/21/18 RIP Canadian marijuana prohibition!

Thank you JT!
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Loveall
#8 Posted : 7/2/2018 12:15:56 AM

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Thanks for the input everyone.

I've been thinking about the damage caused as some have mentioned.

Could these laws also be addictive? Let me explain:

Society is a complex system. Viewed as an organism it is constantly adapting. Whith this in mind, repeated abuse of these laws has affected the social organism as follows:

1) Creation and growth of government institutions and business practices due to the use of these laws. This creates an stong economical depence on marijuana laws. This is similar a physical addiction mechanism in addicts.

2) Distribution of propaganda where marijuana downsides are emphasized, exaggerated, and even lied about. Simultaneously, research is repressed, delayed, or ignored. This is equivalent to an addict lying to himself about his addiction.

3) Creation and growth of a violent criminal enterprise and heavy criminaliziton of consumers. . These are the damaging side effects of the law, equivalent to a person with liver damage due to alcohol abuse.

Overall, when society is viewed as an organism, it seems clear that criminal drug laws have a high potential for abuse and dependence with no recognized benefit.

A future more enlightened society would declare marijuana laws schedule I and abolish them. There will be withdrall symptoms (DEA restructuring, prison underpopulation, pharmaceutical industry adjustments, etc). It will be painful, but getting off marijuana laws is very important for society's long term health (in my estimation).
β€œ... (a) psychedelic substance occasionally causes psychotic behaviour in people who have not taken it.”
Excerpt from a McKenna talk transcript / audio.
 
dragonrider
#9 Posted : 7/19/2018 10:35:54 PM

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I believe that in some countries they're trying to ban energy drinks now.

So on the one hand there's a movement for legalisation of cannabis going on, and cannabis use is becoming more and more accepted. But on the other hand it seems like it's becoming more accepted as well, for politicians, to decide for us what we can and what we can't do with our very own bodies (and minds).

Sometimes it's even the same politicians who decide to legalize cannabis, who propose bans or restrictions on other stuff, like tobacco, sugar, alcohol and energy drinks.

I think that's a dangerous thing, because it could easily backfire: If even liberal politicians are shaking off the taboo on interveining in peoples personal lives, it will only become easier for the more conservative minded ones to turn the clock back on legal cannabis.
 
Jagube
#10 Posted : 7/19/2018 11:41:45 PM

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One very positive thing is the differences in the laws of different countries, because it shows the legal status of plants and substances is kind of arbitrary and a political matter rather than something universal and backed by science or other solid arguments, in which case all countries would agree and have the same laws.

It makes people think: "Theft is banned everywhere, murder is banned everywhere, but cannabis is banned some places but not others, so it must be a different kind of crime." It may be an obvious thing, but you'd be surprised how thick some people are.

dragonrider wrote:
Sometimes it's even the same politicians who decide to legalize cannabis, who propose bans or restrictions on other stuff, like tobacco, sugar, alcohol and energy drinks.

These are different things and different motivations.

The controlled status of cannabis means you can go to jail for growing your own plants.
I've never heard of any country trying to ban tobacco, but even if that happens, I presume the motivation would be to target the big tobacco industry as a measure to reduce the cost of public health. It's unlikely they would prosecute people for growing their own tobacco. The motivation behind controlling cannabis, on the other hand, is more of a moral one and a cognitive liberty issue.

Personally I don't care for tobacco, sugar, alcohol or energy drinks. If sugar gets banned, it will make it easier to find decent food. They put that shit in everything these days; if they stop, I won't complain. And those who want sugar can always get it from fruit, or join the Nexus and learn how to extract it from bananas Pleased Same with energy drinks (extract caffeine from coffee and dissolve it in agave syrup or some such). Those who want alcohol can always make their own beer or wine and optionally distil it.

A lot of people would surely get upset as they'd suddenly realize how addicted they are to these things.
 
dragonrider
#11 Posted : 7/20/2018 12:06:27 AM

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Jagube wrote:
One very positive thing is the differences in the laws of different countries, because it shows the legal status of plants and substances is kind of arbitrary and a political matter rather than something universal and backed by science or other solid arguments, in which case all countries would agree and have the same laws.

It makes people think: "Theft is banned everywhere, murder is banned everywhere, but cannabis is banned some places but not others, so it must be a different kind of crime." It may be an obvious thing, but you'd be surprised how thick some people are.

dragonrider wrote:
Sometimes it's even the same politicians who decide to legalize cannabis, who propose bans or restrictions on other stuff, like tobacco, sugar, alcohol and energy drinks.

These are different things and different motivations.

The controlled status of cannabis means you can go to jail for growing your own plants.
I've never heard of any country trying to ban tobacco, but even if that happens, I presume the motivation would be to target the big tobacco industry as a measure to reduce the cost of public health. It's unlikely they would prosecute people for growing their own tobacco. The motivation behind controlling cannabis, on the other hand, is more of a moral one and a cognitive liberty issue.

Personally I don't care for tobacco, sugar, alcohol or energy drinks. If sugar gets banned, it will make it easier to find decent food. They put that shit in everything these days; if they stop, I won't complain. And those who want sugar can always get it from fruit, or join the Nexus and learn how to extract it from bananas Pleased Same with energy drinks (extract caffeine from coffee and dissolve it in agave syrup or some such). Those who want alcohol can always make their own beer or wine and optionally distil it.

A lot of people would surely get upset as they'd suddenly realize how addicted they are to these things.

Yes, you're right. But the "morality" of the laws on drugs are usually defended with the argument that "it's bad for your health and we have to protect people against themselves".

Liberals all over the world have always been against such arguments. If they now start to adopt that very line of thinking, they can no longer object if conservatives are using the same argument to ban cannabis again. It will only make them look hypocrite if they would say that "government knows best" is true when it comes to beer or soda, but not when it's about weed.
 
Jagube
#12 Posted : 7/20/2018 8:26:00 AM

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The banning of soda or sugar would be of a very different nature. It would be banned for sale as a food, as part of food regulations rather than drug laws. Cannabis falls under controlled substance laws and can get you jailed for possession.

When something is bad for your health and gets banned as a food, I don't think it's a big liberty infringement. You wouldn't want paint, glue or methanol to be sold in grocery stores as a food, between baked beans and canned tuna, would you?

And you most definitely wouldn't want these chemicals to be put in your bread, cakes or yogurt, and have to pay 4x as much for the healthier "Paint free bread" or "Yogurt with no mercury added" option available only at health food stores.
Unfortunately that's the situation we have with sugar. I'll be happy if that changes.
 
dragonrider
#13 Posted : 7/20/2018 9:05:25 AM

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No, i don't think it would be that different. Sugar is something that some people actually want in their food, unlike glue or paint. It gives them a short rush and a crash afterwards, wich causes them to long for more. And people are actually aware of this, and still decide to have it.
So sugar is not that different from many banned substances in this regard. It triggers the release of dopamine. Something that sugar replacements like stevia, lack.

I'm not talking about scamming, about selling something as bread while it's actually plaster. Ofcourse stuff like that is happening as well, and should be illegal. What you're talking about is a sort of cheeting.

But i'm talking about the idea that the government could decide wich lifestyle choices are allowable, and wich aren't. That is a dangerous idea.

The use of cannabis can be unhealthy as well. Most people smoke it, for instance. Some people get addicted to it. In some people it can trigger psychosis.

That's more than enough reasons to ban it, if you buy the "people can't handle themselves so let's decide for them" logic.

 
Jagube
#14 Posted : 7/22/2018 12:43:04 AM

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dragonrider wrote:
No, i don't think it would be that different. Sugar is something that some people actually want in their food, unlike glue or paint. It gives them a short rush and a crash afterwards, wich causes them to long for more. And people are actually aware of this, and still decide to have it.
So sugar is not that different from many banned substances in this regard. It triggers the release of dopamine. Something that sugar replacements like stevia, lack.

[..] i'm talking about the idea that the government could decide wich lifestyle choices are allowable, and wich aren't. That is a dangerous idea.

I don't think anyone is going to make sugar illegal to possess or process for personal use. Any laws would probably be about limits on how much sugar can be put in processed foods sold in grocery stores, and perhaps a list of products that are not allowed to be sold with sugar added.

This is not about dictating people what they are allowed to put in their bodies, but about setting half-decent standards on the big processed food industry, which doesn't care for people's health and exploits our species' evolutionary maladaptations. I've seen a British documentary on Youtube about mothers who only ever feed fast food to their children. One was proud that her 4 year old son was consuming 35 cans of coke a week. That wasn't the kid's choice; not initially anyway. That's not personal liberty.

What makes you think people don't want paint in their bread? Many foods contain artificial colorings.

If such laws are passed, people will still be able to get sugar, and it most definitely won't be any harder than it is for us to get DMT, which for a serious seeker is not an obstacle. And for a person seriously interested in consciously exploring their reward system by getting high on sugar and crashing, it will be a piece of cake (no pun intended).
And - importantly - it will be legal.

dragonrider wrote:
The use of cannabis can be unhealthy as well. Most people smoke it, for instance. Some people get addicted to it. In some people it can trigger psychosis.

And therefore a world where supermarkets or other food outlets sell cannabis chicken nuggets is not coming.
But one where you can grow cannabis at home and smoke it without the fear of going to jail for 15 years is a possibility.
 
thymamai
#15 Posted : 7/22/2018 4:30:01 AM

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illegalizing any substance as harmless as marijuna or mescaline stigmatizes psychoactive substances and invites a culture centered around 'outlaw-dom' and substance abuse. it does nothing to prevent usage, and everything to facilitate accumulated prison culture among the masses. like many laws.
 
TGO
#16 Posted : 7/22/2018 9:31:15 PM

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It definitely is a dangerous gateway law. Because of that, the legalization process itself is practically a three ring circus, so many damn hoops to jump through and you still don't always end up with what you wanted.

In Oklahoma, for example, they just pushed through a medical marijuana program that...

"...will allow patients with any medical condition and a doctor’s recommendation to register to possess, grow, and purchase medical cannabis. It will establish a framework to regulate the production and sale of medical marijuana through dispensaries."

Yet, almost instantly, the will of the people was ignored. "Emergency regulations" were put in place that:

-Prohibit cannabis products from being sold with more than 12% THC content.
-Prohibit dispensaries from selling smokeable cannabis.
-Require each dispensary to have a pharmacist on staff.
-Require physicians to register before making recommendations, complete medical cannabis-specific training, and screen patients for substance abuse, mental health issues, and whether the patient presents a risk for diversion. They must also perform a pregnancy test on β€œfemales of childbearing years.

Oklahoma voters legalize medical marijuana; health department issues onerous regs

So, this is a move in the right direction but it is clear that the US government does not want to let go of its death grip on personal freedoms. Prying one finger open at a time is the only option in this case, likely through litigation. This will certainly help some people but it is not enough. Full legal weed in all its forms is the only sensible policy. Too bad so many people in charge lack sense.
I'm in a state that may see some cannabis activity on the upcoming ballot, FINALLY! But I'm afraid there are similar ideas floating around my neck of the woods. So who knows...
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Loveall
#17 Posted : 7/23/2018 2:31:38 PM

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Well said Grateful One. Oklahoma officals trying to kick their law addiction are looking like junkies trying to get off a hard drug.

I understand though. Many have built lives/careers/business around these laws. They grew up with them. It's going to be a slow and painful process for society to kick the drug law habit.

I think this will be a lesson for the history books. Be VERY cautious, humble, and careful when criminalizing drugs, and especially natural drugs that come from plants. The laws you come up with can be very detrimental, and if you get it wrong generations will suffer the consequences. Are you sure you are wiser than nature? Wiser than all the ancient societies that used these drugs before?

Ronald Reagan is a prime example of a victim of drug laws: an arrogant proppnent of the war against marijuana, he suffered from Alzheimers which we are starting to learn now could be helped/magaged by marijuana. His wife was looking for a substances to help his husband and funding all kinds of odd research, and SIMULTANEOUSLY touting to just say "no" to marijuana.

Hopefully we get past these laws, and a few decades from now we end up in one of those webpage slideshows as an example of "the stupid things people did on the past". Something like:

"It may seem surreal now, but people in the past made natural substances like CBD, THC, and DMT illegal, preferring to use synthetic powerful dangerous opioids legally. Not only where these natural important molecules illegal, but the governments of late 20th and early 21st century pursued their policy in full force, swelling their prison population, creating an underground market where the most powerful and violent criminal organizations in human history thrived, and delaying important research. Thankfully our ancestors eventually regained some sanity after their opioid binges and slowly decriminalized these important substances we now know are a cornerstone of physical/mental human health, the catalyst of the reconnection with nature and sustainability movement of the the late 21st century, and the precursors of important scientific discoveries. The process of decriminalization was slow however, ironically similar to kicking an addiction to the strong synthetic opioids that were being used at the time."



β€œ... (a) psychedelic substance occasionally causes psychotic behaviour in people who have not taken it.”
Excerpt from a McKenna talk transcript / audio.
 
 
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