IT’S TIME TO WAKE UP ABOUT MARIJUANA – A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT

The WSJ recently published an extensive article about the dangers of marijuana – it’s something that the American Psychological Association should be doing, but they’re too busy publishing articles about how dangerous masculinity is.

Those of you who read these posts know that I rarely take up topics unless they are directly related to corporations and their organizational gains or losses.  This is a topic that might appear to have little relevance to corporations, but, in actuality, it will have direct effects on corporations and their employees for years to come – until such a time when the country can wage the kind of wars that its been involved in recently against the pain-killing drugs that have been freely prescribed and freely taken by the nations’ youth.  According to the WSJ, “Over the past 30 years, a shrewd and expensive lobbying campaign has made Americans more tolerant of marijuana.  Already, more than 200 million Americans live in states that have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use.  Yet, even as marijuana has become more socially acceptable, psychiatrists and epidemiologists have reached a consensus that the drug presents more serious risks than most people realize.”  The numbers of Americans who use cannabis heavily is soaring.  In 2006, about 3 million Americans reported using the drug at least 300 times a year; by 2017, that number had increased to 8 million.  Put another way, only one in 15 Americans consume alcohol once a day; but, one in five marijuana users do.  And the marijuana that they are consuming is far more potent than ever before.  What is clear from the studies that have been performed is that marijuana can cause psychosis and psychosis is a high risk factor for violence.  “What’s more,” according to the WSJ, “that violence occurs when psychotic people are using drugs. As long as people with schizophrenia are avoiding recreational drugs, they are only moderately more likely to become violent than healthy people – but when they use drugs, their risk of violence skyrockets.”  As is well-known, cannabis causes paranoia – and paranoia frequently leads to violent actions.  There are studies showing marijuana use as a significant risk factor for violence.  A 2012 paper on research of domestic violence, found that marijuana use was associated with the doubling of domestic violence in the U.S.  The WSJ ends their piece with the following: “For centuries, people all over the world have understood that cannabis causes mental illness and violence – just as they’ve known that opiates cause addiction and overdose.  Hard data on the relationship between marijuana and madness dates back 150 years to asylum data kept by the British.”  I’d say that it’s time to rethink the “bill of goods” that we’ve been sold on marijuana and its use.

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