Pubdate: Fri, 12 May 2006
Source: Pacific Daily News (US GU)
Copyright: 2006 Pacific Daily News
Author: Chris Curran Dombrowski, D.O.


"On my way downstairs I had a smoke, and somebody spoke and I went
into a dream."

Sir Paul McCartney, "A Day in the Life"

Cannabis is an illicit multibillion-dollar agricultural industry in
the United States. The annual cannabis crop in California is worth
about $4 billion, making it the state's most lucrative agricultural
resource. Cannabis is a non-toxic, psychoactive plant that has never
killed anyone, does not lead to the use of hard drugs, and has
tremendous healing capacities.

The benefits of regulating cannabis -- regulation involves
governmental control -- go beyond the economic realm, as opposed to
legalization, in which some soulless corporation would glamorize it
through advertising, shoving it right down your kids' lungs!

The social studies of Spain, Portugal, Holland and British Columbia,
which tolerate the personal use of cannabis, reveal that their
children are more intelligent, less violent and 30 percent less likely
to experiment or explore any drug compared to those children growing
up in an alcohol-flooded society. One of the reasons for this is that
by criminalizing cannabis, you give rise to secondary deviance,
creating a subculture or underground which enables access to harder

Alcohol fuels aggression and violence. Cannabis is a safer euphoriant
than alcohol. The regulation of cannabis would decrease the use of
harder drugs such as alcohol, tobacco and methamphetamine. There would
be considerable savings in government spending on prison control, the
criminal justice system's "gravy train."

In no way, shape or form am I condoning recreational drug use, but we
should at least recognize that there are safer intoxicants, that
personal use will continue and that the best course of action involves
harm-reduction policies.

Chris Curran Dombrowski, D.O.
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