California's Proposition 19 created quite a stirring debate from both sides; those in favor of legalizing marijuana and those opposing legalization. Personally, I have long thought out-loud to friends and family that marijuana should be legalized, regulated, and taxed just like alcohol and tobacco. So when Prop. 19 came along, it sounded well suited to turn my "legalize it, regulate it, tax it" beliefs into the law of the land.
Alas... it was not to be.
Do I care that Prop. 19 didn't pass? No, not really. At least not from a user's perspective, anyway. Why? Because I don't use marijuana. I don't smoke it, eat it, vaporize it, or otherwise use it in any form. Not even in its Federally approved medicinal form Marinol.
But I do care because I truly view the impact of marijuana as similar to the impacts that alcohol and tobacco have. All three substances have been used for decades (centuries, really) by humans, and their effects on the body are well known. In fact, marijuana is shown to be less harmful than alcohol and tobacco. And I think that adults should be allowed to make their own decisions as to whether to experience the effects of these substances on their own bodies.
I'm not encouraging anyone to use marijuana, by the way, no more than I would encourage them to drink alcohol, smoke tobacco, or even to super size their meal deal. What I do encourage is allowing citizens in our society to exercise their freedom of choice; a freedom currently prohibited for marijuana.
I freely admit that I could be wrong about my beliefs that marijuana is relatively harmless and that it has a low impact on our bodies. So I intend to use this blog to share my explorations of marijuana, it's impacts on individuals, as well as society, from both sides of the legalization debate.
And I plan to start by smoking marijuana.