Friday, January 31, 2014

Common Runner's Mistakes To Avoid.

See Running, Contortion & Other Happy Thoughts

 Over Training 

Over training can lead to burn-out and running injuries. Some runners become too eager and run every single day without allowing for proper recovery time. They believe that over training will get them fitter faster but the exact opposite happens. 

To Avoid Over training: 
  • Up Your mileage gradually. Do not increase by more than 10% each week. 
  • Allow a rest by dropping your mileage down to up to 50% every 4th week.
  • Take a day off after a hard run. You need rest days for proper recovery and optimum performance. 
  • Incorporate cross-training into your schedule to keep muscles guessing and give running muscles and joints a break. 

Going Out Too Fast

Many beginner runners are guilty of this mistake. They're pumped up and ready to go at the beginning, even running up ahead of the pack for the first few miles only until the dreaded 'crash and burn' follows later on. 

To Avoid Going Out Too Fast:

  • Deliberately run out your first mile slower than you planned to run your last. Remember that for every second you go out too fast in the first half of the race/run, you could lose double that amount of time in your second half. 
  • Make sure you are in the correct starting position. Don't try to start with faster runners because you will be tempted to keep up with them
  • Check your watch after the first mile to stay in pace. Make adjustments as you go along.

Improper Fueling

Runners often overlook the importance of proper nutrition for health as well as performance reasons. What/when/how you eat before, during and after your run hugely impacts your performance and recovery. 

To Avoid Improper Fueling: 

  • Try having a light snack an hour to an hour and half before your run. Choose something high in carbohydrates, low in fat, fiber and protein. Good examples are a bagel with peanut butter, a banana or an energy bar or a bowl of cereal with a cup of milk. To avoid gastro-intestinal problems, stay away from rich high fiber or high fat foods. 
  • If running for more than 90 minutes, you need to replace some of the calories being burned.You can get carbs on the run from sports drinks or foods that are easily digested like energy gels, energy bars or even jelly beans designed especially for distance runners. You should take in at least 100 calories after an hour of running and 100 every 45 minutes to hour after that. 
  • Replenish energy ASAP after a workout. Studies show that muscles are most receptive to rebuilding glycogen (stored glucose) stores within the first 30 minutes after a workout. Eating soon after exercise prevents muscle stiffness and soreness. You'll want mainly carbohydrates but don't skip the protein. A good rule of thumb is 1 gram protein : 3 grams carbohydrates. A peanut butter sandwich, fruit/yogurt smoothie, even chocolate milk are all good post-run snacks.
  • Don't follow low carb diets when training. You need a certain amount of carbohydrate in your diet because it's a runner's most important source of fuel. 

Wrong Clothing

Wearing improper clothing can make you either uncomfortable or ill depending on weather conditions. 

To Avoid Improper Clothing

  • Wearing the right fabric is essential. Runners should stick to technical fabrics such as Dryfit, Thinsulate, CoolMax, polypropylene or silk. These will wick the sweat away from your body, keeping you dry. It's very important to make sure you don't wear cotton for this layer because once it gets wet, it stays wet; making it uncomfortable in warm weather and dangerous in cold weather. Cotton can also lead to chafing. 
  • Gauge weather clothing by adding 15-20 ° F to the current temperature. That's how much warmer you'll be once you start running. Stick to loose, light-colored clothes in warmer weather.

Not Drinking Enough

Often runners don't realize how much fluid they lose during runs or may worry about side-stitches. As a result, they end up suffering from dehydration , which is detrimental to your performance and health. Pay close attention to hydration before, during, after runs. 

To Avoid Not Drinking Enough

  • Drink about 16-24 oz. of water or other non-caffeinated fluid about an hour before you start. Stop drinking at that point to avoid bathroom breaks. Drink another 4-6 oz. just before you start.
  • if running faster than a 8:00/mile pace, take in 6-8 oz. every 20 minutes. During longer runs (90 minutes or more) some fluids should include a sports drink like Gatorade to replace lost sodium and other minerals (electrolytes).
  • Rehydrate after runs. Dark urine means dehydration. Urine should be a lemonade color. 

Bad Upper Body Form

Some runners swing their arms from side to side which leads to bad form (slouching and inefficient breathing).

To Avoid Bad Upper Body Form:

  • Keep arms at waist level, where they might likely brush your hip. your arms should be at a 90 degree angle with elbows at your sides. Rotate arms at the shoulder, not the elbow so they're swinging back and forth. 
  • Keep posture straight and erect. Head up, back straight and shoulders level. If you get tired, instead of slouching, poke out your chest. 

Losing Control On Hills

When running downhill, many runners make the mistake of leaning too far forward and running out of control and over striding which can lead to injuries.

To Avoid Losing Control On Hills:

  • Lean slightly forward. Take short, quick strides. Don't lean back and try to brake yourself. Avoid taking huge strides to reduce pounding to your legs. 


One of the most common mistakes, over-striding or landing heel first with foot well ahead of your body's center of gravity. Some runners assume this will improve speed or efficiency but it  is not so. Over-striding wastes energy since you're braking with each foot strike and it could lead to shin-splints

To Avoid Over-striding: 

  • Make sure you don't lunge forward with your feet. Focus on landing mid-sole, with your foot directly under your body with each step. As if stepping on hot coals, keep strides short and close to the ground. Keep arms with short, low swings to keep in control.

Too Much, Too Soon

New runners can get so enthused and excited that they expect to do too much, too soon. They start thinking more is better and can soon develop overuse injuries such as shin-splints, runner's knee or ITB Syndrome

To Avoid Too Much, Too Soon: 

  • In early development, be more conservative about how long, how much and how often you run. Increase mileage gradually. Don't increase by more than 10% weekly. If you were on a long break or are new to running, start out with walking and then progress to a run/walk program.
  • pay close attention to aches and pains. if pain gets worse during your run, you should stop. Listen to your body and know when and when not to push through the pain. 
  • Take at least one full day off from exercise each and every week. Your muscles build and repair themselves on these rest days. If you run every single day, you're only losing strength and risking injuries. 

Wrong Shoes

Wearing old shoes or improper fitting ones can lead to injuries. 

To Avoid Wrong Shoes: 

  • Visit a running specialty shop or sports store where knowledgeable staff can help you find the right shoe for your running style and foot type. Find out if you are an overpronator, underpronator or neutral runner.  
  • Replace running shoes every 300-350 miles because loss of cushioning could lead to injuries. Alternate running shoes if possible to allow for maximum wear and proper airing/drying in between runs. 

Jogging, Contortion and Other Happy Thoughts.

Despite having regular boosts in blogging there are still times when I am a bit reluctant to get into posts that I know will require plenty of time. There are times though, when there are things on
my mind that I would like to express and they nag me until I finally do. 

I was just doing a little research on running/jogging because since last month, I've kind of gotten into it. I was never really a runner and can only remember being good at sprinting back in primary school. That's crazy and so I figured it's time I changed that. I want to get better at distance running and building endurance. I mean people look at my calves and ask, "do you run track?", to which I have to meekly say, "Um...not really." The fact that I wore 3" heels for 6-7 years growing up and modeled on my tiptoe up and down my grandma's hallway in front of a giant mirror is none of their business! But hey... in that case, it is what it is and I could change that if I chose to. There are more important things to focus on. 

So yeah, I want to run. Sunday before last, I ran/jogged straight out west by BahaMar and turned around. That was a total of an hour and thirty minutes! The great thing about it too was that it was also the weekend of the Sunshine Insurance's 'Race For a Cure' so I had a smooth quiet strip, lots of police presence and motivation, but best of all, free water! Hallelujuah! About 45 minutes into it, I got a cup while I was running and tried to take a mouthful and swallow it slowly. Wishful thinking! I spewed water about 10ft. of water and nearly choked! The funny part was that I didn't stop running either! 
If someone had a picture of that! All the trials and errors of an amateur runner. It was rather windy that day with dry air. I also got cramps in my inner thighs. I guess I just had to stretch better and give myself some time off. I figure if I could run 2-3 times a week and workout at home 2-3 times would be great. 

While looking up running tips, I found some 

I feel like it's time for me to start doing all of (or most of) the things that I should've been doing in my 20's. I want to push my body and love to see transformation and progress. It's not perfection that I'm striving for, just steady progress. For the past 6 months to one year, I've been serious about exercising and eating properly or semi-properly at least. I still take my supplements and so there really is nothing stopping me. 

It's because of this that I also am getting into flexibility and contortion training. Just as I was no runner in my younger days, I
was no stretcher but oddly enough, was into gymnastics and even took gymnastic classes for a time. I was as stiff as a board and was never able to imaging doing a full split. But not anymore! Yeah ya' girl is well on her way to bendies from here to Infinity! As funny and silly as it sounds, I'm learning to do what floats my boat in life. Who's to say "What's the point?" or "aren't you to old for that now?"  That's exactly the point in fact! That time is not slowing down for any of us and so we must grab life by the horns right now and do what you love and what's good for you. Now! Besides my writing career, and other goals, I want my body to be in tip top shape and want to amaze myself. Here's the thing, you can't gripe and fret about what you didn't do back when that you "should've" been doing. When you know the time is right, you do it and will be as if you were doing it all along. Time doesn't care about yesterday or tomorrow. Only what you're doing right now! Now this part may
be a little peculiar but I also think that the time we live in is different. It's random, violent, dangerous and calls for energy. This, to me, is no time to be sedentary, overweight and tired. I want to make changes in my life and being in better shape will help with me doing so. Besides, I don't feel like 'Doomsday Prepping' is a such a bad idea. Not meaning I'm looking forward to there being a Doomsday, but being ready and able to take on all of what this life has to offer.

Finding motivation hasn't been much of a problem either. My playlist of music is pretty extensive so whatever I'm in the mood for get me "in the zone". That could be Lil' Wayne, or it could be my favorite 'happy tune' at the moment which is Pharrell Williams "Happy". Good vibes fi' di' good vibes! Wow! That chic has a nice behind! 

This weekend I want to take the kids fishing again. It's been years since we've done it as a family and it will  be Milani's first time. I already got all of the gear, the only things missing are rods but we'll 'manifest' those in due time. May as well take advantage of the close proximity and great weather. Besides, I could use a big pepper snapper for dinner on Sunday! I remember going fishing with my mom, stepdad, sisters and cousins-in-law as a child during school breaks and vacations. They were truly the good old days. We had the islands/cay practically to ourselves and caught all sorts of strange and exotic sea-life. I could remember catching a grouper that was about 10lbs. and had a scar in my hand from the line for about 5 years! My cousins caught swordfish, jacks, snappers galore and even an eel! Heck I can even recall the workers of Jewfish Cay (where my folks lived and worked for a few years) catching nurse sharks! I sure want my kids to have those kinds of adventurous experiences as well and great memories to share with their children.  It's not always about money because God has already given us the Earth to enjoy. It's man that has put such importance on 'stuff' that can sometimes steal our joy. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Pros Vs. Cons of Legalizing Marijuana.

I just got through watching an episode of “The View” where the discussion was around legalized, medical marijuana in The United States. While I know we here in The Bahamas are FAR away from that point at the moment, I still would like to get feedback from my readers as to what you guys think. I personally don’t see weed as a major threat, besides the one or two ‘cons’ listed below and the fact that it is illegal for now, but some may have some other concerns which I would like to hear as well. To some, marijuana is a life saver, to some it’s the “healing of the nation” and to some, it’s the grass from hell that leads to young people hitting crack! Let’s round up some information on the topic…

 PBS Documentary - The Science of Marijuana

“There is no plant on Earth more condemned than marijuana. We’re talking about a living organism which governments have taken upon themselves to designate as an illegal substance. Despite no existing evidence of anyone ever dying of a marijuana overdose, possession of this plant is still illegal in many parts. Marijuana has been found to suppress cancer, reduce blood pressure, treat glaucoma, alleviate pain and even inhibit HIV. It is an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective. Can you understand more now why it’s illegal?
No Independent Study Has Ever Linked Marijuana To Psychosocial Problems
Cannabis is one of the most powerful healing plants on the planet. Dozens of studies have made pseudoscientific attempts to indicate that young people who use cannabis tend to experience psychological, social problems and mental decline. However, there is no evidence that marijuana use is directly linked with such problems, according to the results of a study published in The Lancet.

“Currently, there is no strong evidence that use of cannabis of itself causes psychological or social problems,” such as mental illness or school failure, lead study author Dr. John Macleod of the University of Birmingham in the UK told Reuters Health.
“There is a great deal of evidence that cannabis use is associated with these things, but this association could have several explanations,” he said, citing factors such as adversity in early life, which may itself be associated with cannabis use and psychosocial problems.
Macleod and his team reviewed 48 long-term studies, 16 of which provided the highest quality information about the association between illicit drug use reported by people 25 years old or younger and later psychological or social problems. Most of the drug-specific results involved cannabis use.
Cannabis use was not consistently associated with violent or antisocial behavior, or with psychological problems.
In another study, Scientists from King’s College, London, found occasional pot use could actually improve concentration levels.
The study, carried in the American Journal of Epidemiology, tested the mental function and memory of nearly 9,000 Britons at age 50 and found that those who had used illegal drugs as recently as in their 40s did just as well, or slightly better, on the tests than peers who had never used drugs.
‘Overall, at the population level, the results seem to suggest that past or even current illicit drug use is not necessarily associated with impaired cognitive functioning in early middle age,’ said lead researcher Dr Alex Dregan.
Dr Dregan’s team used data on 8,992 42-year-olds participating in a UK national health study, who were asked if they had ever used any of 12 illegal drugs. Then, at the age of 50, they took standard tests of memory, attention and other cognitive abilities.

Overall, the study found, there was no evidence that current or past drug users had poorer mental performance. In fact, when current and past users were lumped together, their test scores tended to be higher.

The Age of Deception is Ending

In 2003, the U.S. Government as represented by the Department of Health and Human Services filed for, and was awarded a patent on cannabinoids. The reason? Because research into cannabinoids allowed pharmaceutical companies to acquire practical knowledge on one of the most powerful antioxidants and neuroprotectants known to the natural world.
The U.S. Patent 6630507 was specifically initiated when researchers found that cannabinoids had specific antioxidant properties making them useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and HIV dementia. Nonpsychoactive cannabinoids, such as cannabidoil, are particularly advantageous to use because they avoid toxicity that is encountered with psychoactive cannabinoids at high doses useful in the method of the present invention.
In a historic and significant moment in American history, last November, Colorado became the first US state to legalize marijuana for recreational use. The impact of the decision could ripple across the entire country with vast opportunities to educate millions on the top health benefits of marijuana.
With the passage of I-502 in the 2012 Washington State election, marijuana also became legal in Washington–not just for medical use, but also for recreational use. Weed is still illegal as far as the United States government is concerned, but Washington and Colorado both have yet to figure out how that will work. It’s certain that this issue will continue to evolve and smooth out as time goes by, but the remaining states will eventually follow suit or be left behind with outdated laws.
Top Health Benefits
It’s no surprise that the United States has decreed that marijuana has no accepted medical use use and should remain classified as a highly dangerous drug like heroin. Accepting and promoting the powerful health benefits of marijuana would instantly cut huge profits geared towards cancer treatment and the U.S. would have to admit it imprisons the population for no cause. Nearly half of all drug arrests in the United States are for marijuana.
According to editor Richard Cowan, the answer is because it is a threat to cannabis prohibition “…there really is massive proof that the suppression of medical cannabis represents the greatest failure of the institutions of a free society, medicine, journalism, science, and our fundamental values,” Cowan notes.

Besides the top 10 health benefits below, findings published in the journal PLoS ONE, researchers have now have now discovered that marijuana-like chemicals trigger receptors on human immune cells that can directly inhibit a type of human immuno-deficiency virus (HIV) found in late-stage AIDS.
Recent studies have even shown it to be an effective atypical anti-psychotic in treating schizophrenia, a disease many other studies have inconsistently found it causing.

1. Cancer
Cannabinoids, the active components of marijuana, inhibit tumor growth in laboratory animals and also kill cancer cells. Western governments have known this for a long time yet they continued to suppress the information so that cannabis prohibition and the profits generated by the drug industry proliferated.

THC that targets cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 is similar in function to endocannabinoids, which are cannabinoids that are naturally produced in the body and activate these receptors. The researchers suggest that THC or other designer agents that activate these receptors might be used in a targeted fashion to treat lung cancer.
How cannabinoids cause cancer cells to die.

2. Tourette’s Syndrome
Tourette’s syndrome is a neurological condition characterized by uncontrollable facial grimaces, tics, and involuntary grunts, snorts and shouts.

Dr. Kirsten Mueller-Vahl of the Hanover Medical College in Germany led a team that investigated the effects of chemicals called cannabinols in 12 adult Tourette’s patients. A single dose of the cannabinol produced a significant reduction in symptoms for several hours compared to placebo, the researchers reported.

3. Seizures
Marijuana is a muscle relaxant and has “antispasmodic” qualities that have proven to be a very effective treatment for seizures. There are actually countless cases of people suffering from seizures that have only been able to function better through the use of marijuana.

Marijuana Helped Stop Child's Debilitating Seizures

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN on Marijuana's 
Effects on Seizures

4. Migraines
Since medicinal marijuana was legalized in California, doctors have reported that they have been able to treat more than 300,000 cases of migraines that conventional medicine couldn’t through marijuana.

5. Glaucoma
Marijuana’s treatment of glaucoma has been one of the best documented. There isn’t a single valid study that exists that disproves marijuana’s very powerful and popular effects on glaucoma patients.

6. Multiple Sclerosis
Marijuana’s effects on multiple sclerosis patients became better documented when former talk-show host, Montel Williams began to use pot to treat his MS. Marijuana works to stop the neurological effects and muscle spasms that come from the fatal disease.

7. ADD and ADHD
A well documented USC study done about a year ago showed that marijuana is not only a perfect alternative for Ritalin but treats the disorder without any of the negative side effects of the pharmaceutical.

8. IBS and Crohn’s
Marijuana has shown that it can help with symptoms of the chronic diseases as it stops nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.

9. Alzheimer’s
Despite what you may have heard about marijuana’s effects on the brain, the Scripps Institute, in 2006, proved that the THC found in marijuana works to prevent Alzheimer’s by blocking the deposits in the brain that cause the disease.

10. Premenstrual Syndrome
Just like marijuana is used to treat IBS, it can be used to treat the cramps and discomfort that causes PMS symptoms. Using marijuana for PMS actually goes all the way back to Queen Victoria.

Mounting Evidence Suggests Raw Cannabis is Best
Cannabinoids can prevent cancer, reduce heart attacks by 66% and insulin dependent diabetes by 58%. Cannabis clinician Dr. William Courtney recommends drinking 4 – 8 ounces of raw flower and leaf juice from any Hemp plant, 5 mg of Cannabidiol (CBD) per kg of body weight, a salad of Hemp seed sprouts and 50 mg of THC taken in 5 daily doses.

Why raw? Heat destroys certain enzymes and nutrients in plants. Incorporating raw cannabis allows for a greater availability of those elements. Those who require large amounts of cannabinoids without the psychoactive effects need to look no further than raw cannabis. In this capacity, it can be used at 60 times more tolerance than if it were heated.

Raw cannabis is considered by many experts as a dietary essential. As a powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, raw cannabis may be right u there with garlic and turmeric.”

Read more

10 Biggest Myths Surrounding Marijuana.

Cc Upinsmoke Ms 5

Fat Storage
Myth: Cannabis’ active ingredient THC gets stored in body fat and its effects can last days or even weeks
Fact: It is true that cannabis (like many other drugs) enters the body’s fat stores, and it is for this reason that it can be detected long after use, but that is the only part of this myth which is true. The fact is, the psychoactive aspects of the stored cannabis are used up quickly and while the residue of the drug remains, it no longer has any effect on the person. Furthermore, the presence of THC in body fat is not harmful to the fat, the brain, or any other part of the body.
Memory Loss
Myth: Cannabis use causes memory loss and a general reduction in logic and intelligence
Fact: This is another myth which has elements of truth to it – no doubt the reason it is believed by so many. Laboratory tests have shown that cannabis diminishes the short term memory – but only when a person is intoxicated with it. A person who has taken cannabis will be able to remember things learned before they took it but may have trouble learning new information during intoxication. There is no scientific evidence whatsoever to suggest that this can become a long-term or permanent problem when sober.
Scientific Proof
Myth: Cannabis has been scientifically proven to be harmful
Fact: Let us start with a quote: “the smoking of cannabis, even long term, is not harmful to health.” This quote comes from the peer-reviewed British medical journal The Lancet (founded in 1823). There is certainly no scientific consensus on cannabis use, and certainly no scientific proof that casual use is dangerous to health.
Loss of Motivation
Myth: Cannabis use causes apathy and a lack of motivation
Fact: In fact, studies done on test subjects in which they were given a high dose of cannabis regularly over a period of days or weeks found that there was no loss in motivation or ability to perform. Of course, abuse of any intoxicating substance over long periods will reduce a person’s ability to function normally, but cannabis is no better or worse. Furthermore, studies indicate that cannabis users tend to have higher paid jobs than non-users.
Crime Statistics
Myth: Cannabis causes crime
Fact: Some people believe that cannabis use leads to violence and aggression, and that this, in turn, leads to crime. But the facts just don’t stack up. Serious research into this area has found that cannabis users are often less likely to commit crimes because of its effect in reducing aggression. Having said that, because of the number of nations that have outlawed cannabis, most users in the world are technically classified as criminals merely for possessing the drug.
Picture 1-67
Myth: Cannabis kills brain cells
Fact: Cannabis does not cause any profound changes in a person’s mental ability. It is true that after taking the drug some people can experience panic, paranoia, and fright, these effects pass and certainly don’t become permanent. It is possible for a person to consume so much of the drug that they suffer from toxic psychosis, but again this is not unique to cannabis and is very rare.
Gateway to Other Drugs
Picture 2-45
Myth: Cannabis is a gateway drug – in other words, it leads to abuse of more potent drugs
Fact: For most people, cannabis is a terminus drug, not a gateway drug. Users of high strength drugs such as heroin or LSD are also statistically more likely to have used cannabis in the past, but this is just toying with statistics; when comparing the number of cannabis users with hard-drug users, the numbers are extremely small – suggesting that there is no link at all.
Modern Potency
Myth: Cannabis is more potent now than in the past
Fact: The reason that this myth has come about is that samples taken by drug enforcement agencies are used to test for potency but they are a tiny sample of the cannabis on the market. The vast majority of cannabis taken today is the same potency as it has been for decades. In fact, even if the potency were greatly higher, it would make little difference to the user as cannabis of varying potency produces very similar effects. Furthermore, there is statistical data on cannabis potency dating back to the 1980s which is more reliable than present methods of detection, and that shows little or no increase.
Lung Damage
Myth: Cannabis is more damaging to the lungs than cigarettes
Fact: First of all, people who smoke cannabis but not cigarettes tend to smoke far less frequently – thereby limiting their exposure to the dangers in the smoke. Furthermore, smokers of cannabis are not inhaling the many additives that go into commercial cigarettes to make them burn down faster or to stay alight. There has even been some evidence that marijuana smoke does not have the same effect on the bronchial tubes as cigarette smoke, so even heavy use may not lead to emphysema.
Cannabis and Addiction
Picture 3-18
Myth: Cannabis is highly addictive
Fact: Less than one percent of Americans smoke cannabis more than once per day. Of the heavy users, a tiny minority develop what appears to be a dependence and rely on the assistance of drug rehabilitation services to stop smoking but there is nothing in cannabis which causes physical dependence and the most likely explanation for those who need assistance is that they are having difficulty breaking the habit – not the “addiction”.

 Legalizing Marijuana:
  1. Prohibition must be weighed against the loss of personal freedom. Countries have a responsibility to respect individual free will and the right of self-determination.
  2. The immorality of marijuana use can only be based on one set of moral beliefs. By taking a “moral” stand against recreational drugs, or fighting the evils caused by the illegal drug trade they increase their popularity amongst constituents.
  3. The War on Drugs serves the immediate interests of politicians. By taking a “moral” stand against recreational drugs, or fighting the evils caused by the illegal drug trade they increase their popularity amongst constituents.
  4. Legal prohibition does not stop consumers from consuming drugs, it does not stop traffickers from producing and selling it. The price of the final product increases to abnormally high values because of the black market status, which together with the powerful effects of drug addiction causes users to commit crimes in order to fund their addiction.
  5. Critics of the War on Drugs advocate the partial or complete decriminalization of illegal drugs, combined with a system of regulation, as happens with alcohol and prescription drugs. By providing legal supplies of currently illegal drugs the price will fall, leading to a collapse in the illegal drug industry, and a reduction in crimes committed by both drug suppliers and users. They also argue that the reduction in the price will lead to little, if any, growth in drug addiction, due to the inelasticity of demand. Some even state that in a strictly regulated market, drug use may fall overall, by removing the marketing activities of the illegal drug industry.
  6. It is not worthwhile for a law to forbid people from willingly exposing their own bodies to harm by using drugs, any more than by overeating or bungee-jumping. Obesity is a national epidemic, killing millions every year, but the government has no right to regulate how much citizens eat.
  7. Drug users exercise free will when they chose to use drugs; a person has the right to give up his or her own freedom. A Government does not have the right to dictate them. No drug eliminates free will. It is possible to quit using any drug. Many banned drugs are significantly less deleterious to free will than legal alcohol or tobacco. Severe physiological addiction has been demonstrated for tobacco (stronger than cocaine), but no strong physiological addiction has been shown for marijuana.
  8. Illegal Drug dealers will sell to anyone, including children. Merchants who legally sell alcohol and tobacco are not allowed to sell to children. Many high school students report that it is easier to obtain illegal drugs than alcohol and tobacco.
Cons for Legalizing Marijuana:
  1. A State cannot be involved with the distribution of substances considered immoral by relevant lots of the population. A substance considered unhealthy cannot be produced and distributed with the help of the state, because the goal of the state is to protect citizens’ health and not to expose them to risk.
  2. The easy availability of drugs would create new consumers rather than rescuing current ones.
  3. Drugs are addictive. They rob the user of free will. A drug user cannot make an informed and rational decision to continue using drugs because the use of the drug eliminates that user’s ability to think logically. Nor can they disseminate themselves from drug taking.
  4. Drug use is dangerous to persons besides the user. In the rise of health care costs, violence associated with the use of drugs, neglect of children by drug-addicted parents, and other third party effects.
  5. The use of soft drugs, such as marijuana, leads to the use of hard drugs (the Gateway Theory).
  6. Legalizing drugs will send a message to children that drug use is acceptable.
Some fascinating marijuana facts:
There is no medical evidence that shows high-potency marijuana is more harmful than low-potency marijuana. Marijuana is literally one of the least toxic substances known. High-potency marijuana is actually preferable because less is of it consumed to obtain the desired effect; thereby reducing the amount of smoke that enters the lungs and lowering the risk of any respiratory health hazards. Claiming that high-potency marijuana is more harmful than low-potency marijuana is like claiming wine is more harmful than beer.

There chance of contracting cancer from smoking marijuana is minuscule. Tobacco smokers typically smoke 20+ cigarettes every day for decades, but virtually nobody smokes marijuana in the quantity and frequency required to cause cancer. A 1997 UCLA study (see page 9) concluded that even prolonged and heavy marijuana smoking causes no serious lung damage. Cancer risks from common foods (meat, salt, dairy products) far exceed any cancer risk posed by smoking marijuana. Respiratory health hazards and cancer risks can be totally eliminated by ingesting marijuana in baked foods.

Coffee contains 1,500 chemicals. Rat poison contains only 30 chemicals. Many vegetables contain cancer-causing chemicals. There is no correlation between the number of chemicals a substance contains and its toxicity. Prohibitionists often cite this misleading statistic to make marijuana appear dangerous.

The U.S. government’s own statistics show that over 75 percent of all Americans who use marijuana never use harder drugs. The gateway-drug theory is derived by using blatantly-flawed logic. Using such blatantly-flawed logic, alcohol should be considered the gateway drug because most cocaine and heroin addicts began their drug use with beer or wine–not marijuana.

Marijuana is not physically addicting. Medical studies rank marijuana as less habit forming than caffeine. The legal drugs of tobacco (nicotine) and alcohol can be as addicting as heroin or cocaine, but marijuana is one of the least habit forming substances known.

A 1996 U.S. government study claims that heavy marijuana use may impair learning ability. The key words are heavy use and may. This claim is based on studying people who use marijuana daily–a sample that represents less than 1 percent of all marijuana users. This study concluded: 1) Learning impairments cited were subtle, minimal, and may be temporary. In other words, there is little evidence that such learning impairments even exist. 2) Long-term memory was not affected by heavy marijuana use. 3) Casual marijuana users showed no signs of impaired learning. 4) Heavy alcohol use was cited as being more detrimental to the thought and learning process than heavy marijuana use.

The U.S. government reports that marijuana-related emergency room episodes are increasing. The government counts an emergency room admission as a marijuana-related episode if the word marijuana appears anywhere in the medical record. If a patient tests positive for marijuana because he/she used marijuana several days before the incident occurred, if a drunk driver admits he/she also smoked some marijuana, or if anyone involved in the incident merely possessed marijuana, the government counts the emergency room admission as a “marijuana-related episode.” Less than 0.2% of all emergency room admissions are “marijuana related.” This so-called marijuana-causes-emergencies statistic was carefully crafted by the government to make marijuana appear dangerous.

See Legality of Cannabis on Wikipedia

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