First of all, I would like to wish a happy three month birthday to my sweet daughter, Giovanna Faith. I can’t believe it’s already been three months…
Today is supposed to be “Tuesday Food Day,” which I enacted last week as I spoke about my passion for almond butter. But I have no problem breaking my own rules, especially when it comes to a holiday.
So, I signed onto Facebook this morning and noticed several people’s status updates were “happy 4/20” or “happy holidays.” And then I remembered. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that April 20th is a stoner’s holiday. A stoner’s Thanksgiving. A popular day for smoking marijuana, or whatever you want to call it. Pot. Weed. Bud. Reefer. Greenery. Cannabis. Mary Jane. And no offense to those of you living under rocks.
Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA is known for being exceptionally liberal, attracting and breeding 21st century hippies. A large grassy field on campus is blanketed with students every April 20th. They gather in circles, clouds of smoke wafting up towards the heavens. Pot brownies are passed around and people dress in green, tie-dye and Rastafarian colors. Sounds of music and drumming float across the field. And the police are nowhere to be seen.
Marijuana is quite the controversial subject these days. Medical marijuana supporters advocate that the herb is harmless and provides a host of medicinal properties. More effective and safe than some pharmaceutical drugs for treating certain conditions. Opponents believe that marijuana is an addictive substance and a gateway drug.
Is one side right? Or is right and wrong more difficult to define in this case? Marijuana has never caused a death in recorded history, alcohol causes many fatalities each day. Why is alcohol legal and marijuana illegal? Some will point to the pharmaceutical industry (read an interesting article on this subject here), some to the cotton industry (hemp is more eco-friendly, a superior fiber, and easier to grow than cotton), and some to the plain fact that marijuana is considered a drug.
In November of this year, California residents will vote on an initiative that could make recreational usage of marijuana legal. A Californial NORML analysis finds that marijuana legalization could bring the state $1.5-$2.5 billion per year. Increasingly more states are leaning towards decriminalization. What do you think? If you were (or are) a California resident, which way would you vote in November? YES, legalize it or NO, definitely not? And why?
Disclaimer: I am not condoning the usage of marijuana, only interested in hearing YOUR opinion on a subject that seems to be rarely discussed.