For most people weed is essentially harmless. This stuff is a little overboard but you can’t tell kids weed isn’t bad. Of course I can it’s true and we’ve known it for decades counting deaths from the substance alone alcohol kills 80,000 people a year. Tobacco kills 480,000 and marijuana kills absolutely no one. According to curriculum marijuana can get you hooked on harder substances it’s a gateway truck.
Yeah educators have been saying that for years but it’s not true most people who try marijuana don’t even get the new smoking marijuana. Now that doesn’t mean that it’s perfectly safe. If you’re under 25 smoking weed can lead to memory problems and poor cognitive functioning but if you’re an adult and your brain is finished developing it’s really your choice. The truth is if you know the risks and use it in moderation weed is no big deal and in fact humans have been using it for millennia.
Humans started growing cannabis as a crop over 8000 years ago. In 440 BC they cannabis as a way of conditioning and part of their relaxation technique. In America for many years marijuana was available in over-the-counter medications. The most of America’s history weed was legal no one cared about it. Harry Anslinger commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and his staunch prohibitionist. He uses the idea of racism to fuel propaganda against people in Mexico since Mexicans who use weeds. He told congress marijuana is an addictive drug which produces in its user’s insanity, criminality and death. Soon the marijuana causes violence meme was everywhere from newspapers to movies.
In 1937 Congress band marijuana and later with Anslinger’s help they passed the first mandatory minimum sentencing laws which made it so that your first time getting caught with this could put you away from two to ten years. The true irony is the government knew Anslinger’s claims were false. Scientists proved marijuana wasn’t connected to violence or insanity in the forties and in 90’s of bipartisan Commission recommended Nixon decriminalize it.
John Ehrlichman in 1994 we knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin and then criminalizing both heavily we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes break up their meetings and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.
President Nixon started the war on drugs to bully his political enemies and minorities his own men admitted it. Despite laws being loosened in a few states mandatory minimums are still in effect. All across the country and marijuana still accounts for nearly half of all drug arrests and despite the fact that white and black people smoke basically the same rate. Black people are four times as likely to be arrested for marijuana. Look we know for a fact that weed isn’t dangerous but we’re still following racist old laws and throwing countless people of color in prison for no reason.