Mark Stewart on Drugs
A: Marijuana is not a gateway drug. Nobody gets high and craves harder drugs from it. Indeed, few people even have an addictive craving for marijuana itself. Marijuana is no more addictive than hot fudge sundaes, and no more of a gateway than an ice cream come.
The one extent to which marijuana IS a gateway drug, ironically, is because it's been made criminal. So some kids try it, have fun and suffer no harm, and REASONABLY conclude: "if this (Schedule 1) drug is what they call harmful, what could be so bad about LSD or heroin?" And they then try one of those the next weekend. Then marijuana, by it's illegality, becomes a gateway to truly addictive drugs. Stupid.
I support marijuana legalization. That some high political figures would criminalize an activity that harms at most the user himself is wayward thinking. It's despicable thinking when it comes from politicians who themselves used illegal drugs. Criminalizing pot use and pot sales to adults is more evil now than 35 years ago because criminal records are now a permanent hex -- they keep you from getting decent jobs forever; and if your "criminality" is a harmless third strike, these draconian politicians put you in prison for 25 years.
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