John V. Santore, former Congressional speechwriter and Obama campaign organizer, has just posted this essay on America's policies concerning Satan, otherwise known as marijuana, an issue that has received new attention recently in the wake of the Michael Phelps scandal. Turns out this Olympic champion prefers "Weedies" over Wheaties.
Although I haven't indulged in quite some time, I have smoked marijuana, inhaled very deeply (Barack: "That was the point") and found it to be pleasurable and even beneficial in that it helped me to "think outside the box," view life from a different angle. It never led me to harder drugs, because I had the good sense to carefully observe how harder substances affected the lives of friends. I never felt a physical addiction to it. Even when I smoked pot with some regularity, I often took extended breaks of a month or two or three just to see if I would have any withdrawal symptoms. I never did. Moreover, contrary to the stereotype of pot giving you the munchies, I once lost 40 pounds in six months on what I can only call "The Ganja Diet". I have a somewhat compulsive attitude towards food but the marijuana relaxed me enough so that those compulsions eased.
I would never recommend anyone trying marijuana. I certainly would advise anyone who was wanting to try marijuana to A). Make moderation the key and B.) Never drive or put anyone's safety in danger while partaking of the herb. It's dumb and dangerous to lock up hundreds of thousands of otherwise law-abiding, productive Americans because they take a toke off a pipe just because there is a law against it. I respect the law and I do not pick and choose what laws I respect, but there have always been dumb laws passed for all the wrong reasons and it is our resposibility as patriotic citizens to review and if necessary fight against those statutes that are hypocritical and do more harm than good.
For further information about how these laws came to be in the first place I vociferously recommend the excellent Ron Mann documentary "Grass", narrated by Woody " Great American" Harrelson. It may open your eyes or even make them bug out a little. If that happens, I have some Visine I'm not using.