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Cannabis Reclassification

By John Clarke

Cannabis

Cannabis is now Class B

Don’t worry though! Our awesome Smoking Mix­tures do the trick and are totally legal!
According to our gov­ern­ment, amphet­amine (speed) is as bad for us as can­nabis — what other message could reclas­si­fic­a­tion send?

Your typical can­nabis smoker tends to

  1. stay indoors
  2. chillax
  3. get through a lot of crisps

Your typical whizzkid tends to

  1. go out a lot
  2. get some­what over­con­fident and aggressive
  3. listen to awesome drum ‘n’ bass
  4. approach the speed of light (literally*)

*Not lit­er­ally

I’m not neces­sarily knocking amphet­amine or it’s users, just pointing out that drugs are a class apart. Oh no, wait.

Check out the (now out of date) graph below, placing drugs from most harmful on the left to least harmful on the right.The score assigned to each drug takes into account harm to your­self and to society as a whole, and what’s that… alcohol and tobacco are more harmful than the class A drugs LSD and ecstasy! Con­sid­ering that the link between can­nabis and schizo­phrenia is as tenuous as ever (why isn’t the Neth­er­lands one big psych ward?), why is our gov­ern­ment ignoring it’s own sci­ent­ists? Reli­gion has more regard for evid­ence than Mr. Brown (and that’s saying some­thing!) If you want to learn more about just how stupid our current clas­si­fic­a­tion system is, you can watch this episode of BBC’s Horizon, which tackles each drug in turn. (49 mins)

19 Responses to Cannabis Reclassification

  1. porcospino says:

    I see we share an interest in the same reading material :-).

    I’ve found the Arendt study supris­ingly hard to explain in plain lan­guage, espe­cially when the “con­clu­sions” are framed so opaquely.

    My reading is that a genetic pre­dis­pos­i­tion to psy­chosis is the determ­ining factor, regard­less of whether the patient smoked weed. Right?

  2. Nomen Nescio says:

    Ahem. Don’t you mean most harmful on the LEFT to least harmful on the RIGHT. At least, that’s my reading of the graphic — unless you think heroin and cocaine are the least harmful drugs of them all.

  3. Synchronium says:

    Ahem. You’re right. Now I’ll just edit the post and kill you before anyone else notices…

    Thanks!

  4. Synchronium says:

    That was the impres­sion I got. What with all the evid­ence for the neurodevel­op­mental hypo­thesis of schizo­phrenia, I don’t see how can­nabis can cause it.

    But then again, I’m no expert on these things…

  5. Badass says:

    I think the can­nabis ruling was unfair. If you put someone who never used the drug a high dose he will nat­ur­ally over­react. If you want a fair trial on the sub­stance you should use a person who knows full well its effect and tell you the truth of the drug. Besides people who nor­mally smoke marijuana don’t smoke for 2 hours straight without taking a break.

  6. buddy says:

    hhappy 420 guys i gotta smoke with you all.

  7. Anon says:

    The comment that people who listen to drum and bass music take speed over can­nabis users is a load of bull. Far from it, its more the opposite infact so get the full facts before posting mis­rep­res­ented unfac­tual inform­a­tion on a culture you’ve not researched.

    Thanks!

    A P’d off Drum & Bass DJ

  8. Synchronium says:

    A culture I’ve not researched? I’ll see YOU at Birmingham’s next Valve Sound System!

    It’s called a gen­er­al­isa­tion. I notice you didn’t have a problem with point number 4? Maybe if you were an avid Ein­stein fan, you’d have flagged that one up as well?

    My overall message was amphet­amine users tend to go out more and get more aggressive. I’ve been to plenty of DnB events and not once seen some guy throwing up from too much can­nabis, but I’ve seen count­less tits on speed acting like they own the place. Perhaps it is YOU who’s not familiar with the culture?

  9. Steve says:

    Sync & DJ Anon, both have fair points — but I see 7’s point that you shouldn’t lambast one type of music. I agree that you are much more likely to see a self-​​important asshole tearing across the room with com­plete dis­regard for others in a club (though I’d say the really rude fucks are prob­ably tooting coke).

    In my exper­i­ence, real D&B fans tend to be more into psy­cho­active exper­i­ences (ganj, acid, shrooms etc.) and for the most part, anyone who is really into a sub-​​culture tends to be polite and respectful within that culture, so if they are taking uppers they can usually do so without turning into a prick.

    Thanks for an eye-​​opening and inter­esting post Sync!

  10. matt says:

    i really find it amazing how the class­ment had changed to class b when i returned from eind­hoven, i’ve smoked weed pretty much not stop for 5 years and feel great a little memory loss but if i was drinking as inapro­pri­atly ill probally be dead and really think the uk is crazy class b!

  11. Daimonion says:

    Inter­esting however I would not lump Crack and Cocaine together its a bit like putting heroin next to codeine. Many people do cocaine without even con­sid­ering crack, and the harm they both do appears markedly different.

  12. Synchronium says:

    Dai­mo­nion: Perhaps it’s because people that use crack will most likely have used cocaine pre­vi­ously, making the rel­ative risk of cocaine higher. Most heroin users prob­ably wouldn’t have used codeine before.

    I’m not trying to argue with you though, just trying to spec­u­late why they might have lumped them together.

  13. porcospino says:

    And now even the walla­bies are at it.

  14. matt milton says:

    i really hink that th new clas­si­fic­a­tion of can­nabis is just unfair, i mean come on look at the affects of alcohol and what it does to a person: you just lose your dignity and sence of being mature by acting really silly and not under­standng what you are doing what makes you feel that you can do any­thing in the world as it is a false feeling just like many other drugs.

    but when it comes to can­nabis it is more about being mature and real­istic and that is what i believe that is causing people to think that it can cause a mental health problem like scyso­frania, because it makes you realise things that you prob­ably never thought of that refreshes your brain and its thought and placing them in a nother level of under­standing and it can be con­ro­lable.
    so it is not the can­nabis that is causing that affect but it is the person who is using it, he/​she migh have a weak soul and brain that is unsteady caused by stress in life or mental issues that are deep inside and unknown and that is without even using any­thing but when they use cnnabis some­times makes it worse i agree…

    but when you come and look at it from the other side “their is alot of peope that are using it in the uk old/​young and didnt cause no deaths.. tobaco cases more damadge than can­nabis but the law is using the fact that tobaco is adictive to out it in the market and make it leagal to make alot ofmoney “how sad hey?” and can­nabis is the victom here.

    Do YOU REALLY THINK THAT CHANING CANABIS INTO CLASSWILL MAKE ANY DIF­FER­ENCE IN THE USAGE OF IT? I dont even think so… but it will make people buy it even more and lets them think of sneeky ways to buy it so the gov­ern­ment is training normal people on how to be thug­sters and dealers that are smugling it “under the table” making alot of money to use it in other bad matters making the crime rate even higher.
    why cant the gov­ern­ment make that money instead will and leg­alise it and sell i in normall shops and not t be soled to people under 21, that way you are making mony that is going towards te country and also pre­venting illegl dealers ad min­im­izing the crime rate because when you find can­nabis in the shops which is a trusted place “who the hell will go buy it off a dealer who is always untrusted and can mix it with any­thing” that means te dealer will be out of busi­ness and crimes that are related by can­nabis will dis­apear and never come back.

    im not saying leg­alise it no im saing reclas­sify it back to C so the normal people dont get in trouble and in prison over some­thing that is less harming that ALCOHOL..

  15. William says:

    One thing Matt has not real­ized that tobacco and alcohol can be easily con­trolled to be taxed. Were as with my favorite gunge it can not be con­trolled because anybody with a little space can grow the weed and sale it without being mon­itored by the gov­ern­ment to be taxed (hint: the real inten­tion behind the Har­rison Act of 1914 because of opium being smuggled into this country). And where the hell these idea’s are coming from when you see a anti-​​weed com­mer­cial? Is it coming from the next gen­er­a­tion of anal “REEFER MADNESS” para­noid psycho’s who was brain washed in believing that the movie was based on real life events.
    Lets face reality in how much that the DEA and Coast Guard drug interdiction’s of how they love to toot their over exag­ger­ated horns in how they prevent small amount what’s not coming in when a far larger numbers are getting by and that’s not including what has been pro­duced here at home.
    AND” if our so called con­cerned gov­ern­ment worried about nar­cotics coming into this country then why are we patrolling outside the ter­rit­orial waters of certain coun­tries
    who does not fall inline with our politics (national security or eco­nomics (oil)) and other coun­tries who does. Meaning do you think that there is less of opium/​heroin coming out of say Saudi Arabia versus cocaine, hash, meth., coming out of Columbia, Mexico,Panama.
    Lets not for get the real reason why we invaded Panama when Noriega’s former General decided to tell the truth in what was going on to the news media when he finally got fed up with the lies about how our gov­ern­ment knew about the drugs coming out of Columbia, Uruguay and Paraguay were being traf­ficking through Panama and into the United States but did not care because as long the import­ance of the canal is mil­it­arily is and as long Noriega falls inline to what we wanted. We did not give a damn in how he ran the country. Noriega knowing this he took full advantage of being a drug lord.
    BUT” yet if you and me grew a couple of plants and not pay taxes or does not fall into the schemes of things in national security, etc.. . We are demon­ized and placed at the same level as the head of some Cartel.
    Yes I do belief that weed should be leg­al­ized. Regret­tably I stopped smoking back in 1994 because of all the man­datory drug testing not because while you are at work but to get work. “AND” I have plans for retire­ment and that is 1 year before I collect social security, I am going to grow couple of plants I am going to trim it, prune it and baby it. For that year just using good old fashion cut chicken manure or bat guano. after that year and I receive my first social security check. I am going to roll up a already pre­pared to the ounce I want in a roll, go and set out in front of my porch located out on couple of acres of nowhere of the moun­tains with my cats, chickens and small veget­able garden. After I had taken my first long drag since my last in ’94 I am going to take a good swallow of my Coors’s long neck. Than I will raise one of my arms up with a gesture from my hand to the world and saying this,” I had paid my dues to this world and what days I have left on this earth I want to be left alone and live the life I want it so this day forward “FUCK THE WORLD AND LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE NOW” Amen!

  16. William says:

    P.S. “GOD BLESS Willie Nelson”!

  17. richard , says:

    Thank you for writing this inform­ative piece, i am a drug user its not in any way made me re asses my life style or atti­tude (towards drugs) but it’s help calm a few quite tyrants of friends and rel­at­ives, that iv shown this piece to and so eased there unaltered minds and per­cep­tions of the state of play in which we cos­mo­nauts live.

    cheers,

  18. Herr Doktor says:

    It’s pretty con­tro­ver­sial. On the one hand, there are pro­fes­sionals who say that can­nabis use may result in psychotic dis­turb­ances, and on the other hand, there are pro­fes­sionals who main­tain that psychotic dis­turb­ances often result in can­nabis use, due to its anxiolytic, sed­ating and partial anti­de­pressant effects.

    Having used can­nabis for several years in order to combat the symp­toms of this stupid, irrit­ating learning-​​social dis­order that I sup­posedly have, more com­monly known as ‘Asperger Syn­drome’, I myself have con­cluded that can­nabis is MUCH safer than pre­scrip­tion anti­de­press­ants, anti­psychotics and tran­quil­lisers alike. And cer­tainly a lot better than the amphet­am­ines, with which it now shares the slightly loftier pos­i­tion of Class B. ‘B’ for ‘Brown’ (as in Gordon); ‘B’ for ‘Bol­locks’. And all the while, my own step­father dies con­tinu­ally in agony, day in and day out, because of the effects of won­derful, legal and socially accept­able alcohol con­sump­tion, gen­er­ally at a dis­count price. Now, he is either drunk and sick with his liver/​kidney deteri­or­a­tion, or else stu­pefied with librium to stop him from con­vulsing to death. Enough is enough. It’s time to fight for our right to our way of life. It’s legal to drink, smoke tobacco, vote fascist, and kill for your country (so long as you’re wearing a uniform).

    It’s okay to have a reli­gious belief, or watch TV com­puls­ively, or to have racist and/​or homo­phobic beliefs. Yet a PLANT, a product of NATURE, which neither kills nor causes any­where near as much harm as the examples listed above, is unac­cept­able, primarily because 1) it can’t be easily taxed, and 2) the initial anti-​​marijuana law was fraught with delu­sional, some­what fascist beliefs, such as the notion that ‘reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men’, and ‘the primary reason to outlaw marijuana, is its effect on the degen­erate races’. Look up Harry J Anslinger, and read it for your­self. As George Wash­ington once said, ‘Plant the hemp seed; sow it everywhere’.

    And as I say, don’t let the bas­tards get you down. People of all walks of life, from toilet cleaners to the aris­to­cracy, con­tinue to enjoy this mira­cu­lous gift of nature. Doctors, teachers, bar­ris­ters and refuse col­lectors — whatever their occu­pa­tion, or lack thereof, people from every corner of society, consume the weed either by smoking or eating.

    If every one of us were to ‘come out’ and, all at once, admit that every last one of us has benefited from use of marijuana, then maybe they would recon­sider. And even if they do not recon­sider, we must con­tinue to do what we enjoy, as standing up to the bullies is the only way to make them back down. Or crush your skull, but at least we get to die on our feet, instead of living on our knees.

    “Freedom is the freedom to say that 2+2=4. If that is granted, all else follows” — GEORGE ORWELL, ‘1984’.

    Amen to that.

  19. gongey says:

    As a someone that worked on the doors of various clubs over several years (intern­ally) my obser­va­tions are quite spe­cific. Raves and min­istry type clubs over­whelm­ingly have a higher pro­por­tion of ‘E’ takers and puffers of weed. They very rarely present a control problem or indeed agressive beha­viour. However having worked in places where two types of music in dif­ferent loc­a­tions are func­tioning at the same time, two entirely dif­ferent sup­porters tend to con­gregate. Con­tem­pory rock or chart music (hi ho silver lining) was where most speed and cocaine was used/​seized/​discovered/​pushed etc. Lo and behold it was also where the doorman(bouncers) earned their wages sorting out (or not depending on the per­sonal danger aspect) most of the fights and argu­ments (male amd female). The House and garage (ecstacy/​puff fol­lowers) were rarely any trouble except to them­selves (od ing). If the rock and chart (cocaine users) were then allowed to join the ravers all sorts of trouble instantly flared up. The two types of rev­el­lers were drugged into their respective state of bliss and never the twain should meet. In the event of injury needing atten­tion the ravers are happy to have someone help and care for them. The speeders would rather rip your head off. For the sake of eficacy this was an obser­va­tion over a period of seven years.

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