It must have been a slow news week in Escambia County Alabama

Here's a link to the "Brewton Standard" Newspaper's site. -->Here<-- Feel free to go post a comment, but be aware that comments are moderated so your comment, like the one I left, may never get published to the site.

The following is EXACTLY as it appears on their website.

Drug is harmful, addictive

Friday, November 20, 2009 9:06 AM CST
Monica Shockley
Guest Columnist

Over the last year or so there has been quite a bit of talk about marijuana becoming legal to possess.  The argument is that marijuana is not as harmful as alcohol, the state is spending too much money on trying to fight it, and the ever favorite — marijuana is not addictive.  Well, to give the argument its day in court, let’s examine the facts.

Let’s take a look at the effects of marijuana and the effects of alcohol.  Alcohol is a depressant; it slows down the functions of the brain, releases the brain chemical dopamine. It can numb a person’s pain and it can make a person sleepy.  The more a person drinks, the central nervous system slows down and permanent changes can be made in the brain.  Short-term effects of alcohol consumption include poor coordination, double vision, lowered reasoning ability, lower heart rate, slowed breathing and anxiety.  From this information a person can say that the consumption of alcohol is harmful to the body.  The harmful effect becomes worse the more the person consumes.

Now let’s look at marijuana. Marijuana comes from a plant called Cannabis Sativa. This plant can be dried and smoked by the user.  Marijuana contains the chemical delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol or as otherwise known as THC. This chemical has been proven to change how the brain works. In addition, marijuana also has 400 other chemicals.  Side effects of this drug include problems with memory, changes in the senses, loss of sense of time passing, poor coordination, faster heart rate, higher rate of lung infections and difficulty thinking and solving problems.

Looking at the problems associated with the consumption of both alcohol and marijuana, it is clear that both are dangerous.

The second argument is the state is spending too much money trying to enforce the laws against the use and possession of marijuana. It is a fact marijuana is illegal. The officers of the law are bound by the oath they take to uphold the laws. The district attorneys are bound to prosecute the law without bias. The laws are created by the Alabama Legislative Branch. Those representatives are bound by the people that they are elected by.  Now, if the argument still holds that the government is spending money on enforcing the law, then the answer is simple, quit smoking marijuana, or help prevent tits use. It would only seem appropriate during these hard financial times to do your part to help the government save money.

When the inevitable happens, and the issue of legalizing marijuana comes up in your neighborhood, review the facts. Marijuana is dangerous and it can be addictive. Then ask yourself this question if you were getting on a plane or in a car and your driver or pilot was high from the use of marijuana, would you get in, would you trust your life to a person under the influence? I can tell you my answer; I would not want to take that chance.

My comment that has yet to be published:

Where do you guys find "Guest Columnist" anyway? You might try to find one that can actually back their points up with facts rather that just printing "umm, Drugs r bad mmmk" Well... scratch that, there's no way to back this article up with facts.

Fact: Marijuana comes from both Cannabis Sativa AND Cannabis Indica.

Fact: The majority of the cultures on this planet have considered the Cannabis plant medicine for thousands of years. 

Fact:Half the medicines sold in this country were Cannabis based until the early 1900's

Fact:Alcohol causes approx 85,000 deaths annually in the US. Cannabis alone has never been the cause of a single death, if it had folks like the "guest columnist" would be parading those stats on every news broadcast available.

Fact: The US Government has been supplying Irvin Rosenfeld with medical cannabis since 1982, he just smoked his 115,000th joint. That's 300 joints every 25 days for 27 years—10 to 12 per day.

It just occurred to me I could go on like this all night. People, please.... do your own research, the internet has all the resources you need to make an informed decision on this matter. You can find ALL the studies done on cannabis (even studies commissioned by the US Government) right here on the net. Don't be "sheep" and by into the same propaganda that you've been force fed for 70+ years.

My response to Senator Jeff Sessions' "canned" reply letter

The following is body of a letter that will be mailed tomorrow in response to a reply letter I received from Senator Jeff Sessions. 

November 21, 2009

Dear Senator Sessions,

This letter is in response to the “canned” response letter you sent me. While I appreciate your staff taking the time to respond to my original letter, I would ask that at least one of them or yourself actually take time to read the letter before responding in the future. Not only was my original letter asking you to support Medical Marijuana for Alabamians in need, it also asked that you put the 70 plus years of negative propaganda about this beneficial plant out of the picture.

Your response letter claims that you fear “legalizing marijuana, or decriminalizing its use, would encourage today’s youth to turn to more deadly substances, such as heroin and cocaine.” Your letter goes on to say that while at a hearing of the Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control, you “listened to four teenagers, each of whom is recovering from heroin addiction” and you were “struck by the fact that the first drug each of them had used was marijuana.” That statement directly references the “gateway drug” theory that, time and time again has proven to be just another lie in the propaganda storm that has raged since Harry Anslinger’s bold faced lies to Congress 1937. If we follow that thinking, most people’s first drink was milk, be it their mother’s breast milk or a man made formula. Does that mean we are all destined to be alcoholics? I think not, the only thing that makes the “gateway drug theory” even remotely true is the prohibition on marijuana itself. Prohibition of this beneficial plant has pushed its care and control into the hands of street level drug dealers who not only sell marijuana but also heroin and cocaine. These street level dealers are smart enough to know if “they” can move their customers to harder drugs they can make more money. These street level dealers have also never been bound by any law that forces them to ask for ID to verify age, and they never will. If you want to blame anything for these four teenager’s addiction to heroin, look at the bureaucracy that started it all, not a beneficial plant.

Senator Sessions the overwhelming majority of cultures on this planet have considered marijuana medicine for thousands of years, including our culture. Prior to the early 1900’s and the re-discovery of aspirin half the medicines in this country were cannabis based. The research is out there for you to know the truth, and I feel it is in your best interest as an elected official for Alabamians to do a little reading for yourself. Alabamians deserve the same rights and freedoms afforded persons in the growing number of states that have adopted medical marijuana laws.

Your letter concludes: “I believe our policies should deter people from using these substances, not encourage or endorse them. However, I recognize that this issue is important to you, and I will certainly keep your thoughts in mind should this matter come before the senate.” So which is it? You can’t have it both ways.

Mr. Sessions I can assure you this issue WILL come before the Senate, and as a constituent who helped you get elected, I urge you to do the right thing for Alabamians. The tide is turning, more and more of the people that placed you in office are learning that it was racism, greed and out right lies that banned marijuana in the first place, and we as a whole demand the same liberties that have been granted to the people of Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

Christopher Butts, Seeker of relief and safe access

ASA : AMA Report Recognizes Medical Benefits of Marijuana, Urges Further Research

ASA : AMA Report Recognizes Medical Benefits of Marijuana, Urges Further Research

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Another great woman in the marijuana cause