Monday, 2 April 2012

Drug or not a drug?

Marijuana is a drug.  That should be the end of this post because it seems this should be intuitively obvious to even the feeblest of intellects.  Now I will concede that marijuana may be less harmful than cigarettes, and it is certainly less harmful than alcohol.  You can die of alcohol poisoning, but it's essentially impossible to die of a marijuana overdose.  And I will definitely concede that THC has several benefits for certain people, including stimulating the appetite and decreasing nausea in cancer patients and decreasing intraocular pressure in glaucoma patients.

However, this isn't about the danger of marijuana, this is simply about the stupid argument made by stupid people that marijuana is an herb, not a drug.  Or that it's a leaf, not a drug.  This always seems to be the argument of the A) uninformed or B) pothead.

Let me get this straight - What you're claiming is if it comes from a plant then it can't be a drug?  Interesting.

So I guess aspirin isn't a drug because the salicylic acid was discovered in a willow tree. I suppose taxols, a class of chemotherapy, aren't drugs because they were isolated from the Pacific Yew tree, and vinblastine and vincristine (more chemotherapy drugs) also aren't drugs because they come from the Madagascar periwinkle. Digoxin (a heart medication) can't possibly be a drug because it was discovered in the foxglove plant. And caffeine CERTAINLY can't be a drug because it's found in tea leaves and coffee beans.

Let's not even start with how cocaine can't be a drug because it's extracted from the coca leaf!  And damn it, heroin can't be a drug because it comes from the opium poppy. Hell, that's a FLOWER! How the hell can it be a drug, right?  RIGHT??

I have to assume these idiots are just stoned when saying this.  I welcome any and all comments from potheads, I mean marijuana advocates supporting their theory.  Oh and by the way, trying to claim that my analogies are invalid because the poppy is "processed" to get the opium out is ridiculous - you "process" the marijuana by burning it before inhaling the fumes.

Ready to argue?  And...go!

22 comments:

  1. Y'know potheads are just going to say that it isn't "the same" because you don't add anything to marijuana.

    I completely agree with you, though.

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  2. Haha its funny watching you troll people and you know what your on about so people can't argue. But isn't cocaine altered a lot and then mixed with stuff like flour to well it for more or wouldn't you consider it processing

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    1. I think that's crack you're thinking of. Cocaine is completely natural.

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    2. I think... I could be wrong though.

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  3. Well I agree. I'm a casual stoner, smoking once or twice a week. It's most definitely a drug. Maybe not as harmful as alcohol, heroin, cocaine etc. But for me it certainly does fall in the recreational drug category. Stoners who say it's a herb irritate me just as much. I feel they try to justify their use of marijuana, and would rather make excuses than admit to being a drug user, avoiding the stigma that comes with the word 'drug'. Either way, it's a very valid point doc!

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  4. I agree with you that it's a drug, but I don't think you've ever voiced your opinion on its legality, DocBastard...

    My actual question is: How many driving-while-on-marijuana incidents have you seen versus driving inebriated? I just want to know, like, a statistic or something. :x

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  5. I'm an EMT and quite coincidentally we had a call the other night out to a reported overdose. We got there and realized some kids mother called 911 because her son smoked pot. My partner and I spent twenty minutes explaining that while pot may have benefits its not only currently illegal but you look rediculous when you smoke a lot. He denied looking stupid, so we left his 29 year old grungy ass at his house. I'm sure we'll see him in the unemployment line soon...

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    1. Considering I have 2 jobs, working about 75 hours a week, and smoke pot regularly, I find that last statement insulting.

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  6. The only way i can see the point of others is the fact that with marijuana, it is not manipulated to get the product. It is natural and untouched. While with other drugs there is science and a practice to getting the high off of it, while with marijuana you just smoke the leaf. It is a DRUG, but I fell it is very different from cocaine and heroin which (correct me if I'm wrong) have catastrophic effects on the human body.

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  7. I once went to a lecture by the first guy to come up with a total chemical synthesis of spongistatin (http://www-gaunt.ch.cam.ac.uk/papers/AC_2005_44_5433.pdf - that's not his paper but by odd coincidence I know the guys who wrote this one that I have just googled).

    Spongestatin is without question a drug. It stops cell division and has antitumour properties. However, to get an authentic sample to compare against these guys extracted something like half a gram of the natural product from seventeen tons of marine sponges.

    Extracting spongistatin from 17 tonnes of sponges may be a little more complex than smoking some weed to get out the TCH but it's exactly equivalent. The drug is there in the natural product and all you are doing is extracting it.

    Oh, and you don't need to process a poppy much at all to get the opium - just scratch it and smoke the resin that forms on the surface. It's hard to argue that the morphine you get that way is not a drug - it's been used as such for thousands of years.

    Marijuana is a drug. No question.

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  8. Why do people insist the "it's not harmful" has anything to do with whether or not it's a drug, and whether or not is should be illegal? Yes, it's a drug. If you want to argue that it isn't because people haven't extracted the THC to its pure form (in other words, it's just the plant), then you could also argue that Magic Mushrooms are the same. And Peyote.

    If it wasn't a drug, what would be the point of taking/smoking it? Why would you ingest something that doesn't taste good or satisfy hunger if it didn't have drug effects? If it didn't change the body's chemistry, and alter mental and physical experiences while it is in your body?

    Yes, it's a drug. And while you can't overdose on it in the way other drug overdoses can cause a risk of death, there are several ER visits every year from "overdoses," because when someone has too much, they become dangerously psychotic. (I have never experienced this first hand, but my Psychology of Addiction professor, a long-time Addiction Psychologist, mentioned this in his book. Craving for Ecstasy and Natural Highs: Harvey Milkman and Stanley Sunderwirth.)

    Oh, and after smoking pot, your mental functioning is impaired for approximately three months. Countless experiments have proven this. A user's memory and motor coordination are affected.

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  9. Marijuana is not a drug. The THC in marijuana is the drug.

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    1. That's called semantics, and you know exactly what I mean. If you really want to act like a jackass, do it elsewhere.

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    2. THC is in marijuana, making marijuana a drug.

      That's like saying, "YOU are not alive, your organs make you alive". Stupid, isn't it?

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    3. Regardless of it's status as a drug, that also begs the question: Why the fuck is it a schedule 1 drug?

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    4. Also, last I checked, meth users aren't campaigning to legalize it.

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    5. Generally, most meth users don't have enough brain cells to think on their own, let alone enough ambition to bother campaigning to legalize meth. They float as a single, mindless mass and end up wandering around like headless chickens. Which they basically are.

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    6. Bjornvit: that is exactly what I'm saying, you can't live without your vital organs, and if THC wasn't in marijuana, it would be legal.

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  10. What is it considered when taken not processed? Still a drug, I'm aware, but marijuana can be administered many different ways - raw, cooked in food, smoked, steeped in tea, and accidentally if you take a drag off of the wrong persons, uh... "Cigarette."

    Not saying it isn't a drug but... that summation was a little lazy.

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    1. I'm not exactly sure what you're trying to say here. What "summation" was lazy? And what exactly was lazy about it? Who cares how you take it? You can inject, smoke, or snort heroin, but you're still taking heroin. You can eat a pot brownie, smoke it, vaporise it, whatever. You're still taking marijuana.

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  11. As I understood it, a Drug was just... any chemical that alters the way bodily functions go about their business. Food and nutrients aren't drugs because that's not altering the way bodily functions work that's giving them resources to do what they do, but PCP changes the way organs function (mostly the brain, I think).

    I didn't go to medical school or anything that was just the bare basics I was taught in early biology and it might have been an oversimplification.

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