With every day I am left shaking my head over the increasingly ridiculous thoughts people have about Cannabis.
Living in Colorado for the last about 20 years I have been around the medical and recreational legalization of Marijuana. I have watched it go from mostly marijuana to shatter butter and wax as the primary way people use this amazing plant. I have watched it help friends from the service suffering from ptsd and others using it for chronic pain and a myriad of other ailments including epilepsy.
Living in a state that was on the forefront of “green revolution” I have watched weed go from illegal to Colorado legal and finally to many states following Colorado in legalizing it both medically and recreationally.
My reason for this vlog is to vent for a moment. On Friday while checking out my news stories I saw a news report from uneducated law makers in Colorado stating the old rhetoric that Marijuana is a gateway drug. Seriously what is it a gateway drug to? My refrigerator? I know it has been associated with the killing of the “Itos” family but seriously I can live with the fact that people are killing whole bags of Fritos, Doritos and Cheetos.
According to a Forbes article “Legal Marijuana States Have Lower Opioid Use”. In states that Marijuana is available to patients it is found that Medicare part D is paying for a significantly lower number of opioids for pain meds. This decrease in opioid prescriptions would logically correlate to a decrease in opioid use disorder and accidental opioid overdoses
The studies Forbes quoted are not necessarily from junk science sources but from JAMA internal medicine. JAMA is a well-respected publication of the American Medical Association.
Now how big of a difference does these study show? It is significant showing that "States with active dispensaries saw 3.742 million fewer daily doses filled; states with home cultivation only [laws] saw 1.792 million fewer filled daily doses," one of the studies Forbes talked about showed.
"State implementation of medical marijuana laws was associated with a 5.88% lower rate of opioid prescribing," the authors wrote. "Moreover, the implementation of adult-use marijuana laws, which all occurred in states with existing medical marijuana laws, was associated with a 6.38% lower rate of opioid prescribing."
Now what is the real reason for this rant?
I recently got in a debate with someone about the fact that Denver City council has approved a pilot program for safe injection of Heroin a drug obviously not safe and very addictive our friend Mary Jane is still being treated as a bad thing and a gateway drug.
Upon going to drugabuse.gov I did find the following quote “These findings are consistent with the idea of marijuana as a "gateway drug." However, the majority of people who use marijuana do not go on to use other, "harder" substances. Also, cross-sensitization is not unique to marijuana. Alcohol and nicotine also prime the brain for a heightened response to other drugs52 and are, like marijuana, also typically used before a person progresses to other, more harmful substances.”
Come on people using the comment that because marijuana may have been used prior to trying something else in a small set of people is like saying almost everyone that has used heroine has eaten donuts until they got a sugar rush there for sugar is technically a “gateway drug”. Ridiculous.
As adults we need to make good decisions for ourselves and our children. Alcohol is illegal under 21 nicotine is illegal under a certain age. But a product that has been shown to be non-addictive and as time goes by is showing to have more and more medical uses is still a schedule one narcotic. (for those that do not know what a schedule one narcotic is the definition according to the United States DEA is “Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Some examples of Schedule I drugs are: heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), methaqualone, and peyote”
So, in short if Marijuana is a gateway drug it is a gateway to better health, a good nights sleep and the refrigerator.