So, I will be the first person to say that in college, I was absolutely convinced that pot was merely the gateway drug to what would surely lead to a life in a gutter. Let me be the first to say that I was wrong. This weekend, some friends and I combined the best parts of Cinco de Mayo and 4/20. I’ll leave it at that. I can also no longer say ‘I’ve never smoked anything ever,’ as of Saturday. Take that for what you will as well. Smoking was, as expected, gross. The taste is foul, and because of the taste (not the inhaling; I did surprisingly well with that. It’s still not the preferred method), I thought I was going to vomit. But, when the homemade muffins aren’t working, and you’ve got one night away from the family with zero responsibilities, you’ll do what you need to do, to achieve what you want to achieve.
I share this article, because on the outset it looks like it’s badmouthing the ultimate taboo subject. But really, it’s not. And, the ‘harms’ do need to be looked at, plus there should be a certain amount of common sense, which we all assume way too much of. But, if you look at the physical harms – risks of cancer, etc., the grass just doesn’t really do much. Which, especially with someone who has a father with lung cancer, that’s refreshing to hear.
Plus, as someone who does live a tightly wound life with a decent amount of anxiety, whether external or internal, the calm that I’ve experienced while high is marked. I know it’s not forever, nor is it something I am constantly striving to achieve (except when it’s been planned, which is how edibles turned into smoking), but for those few hours, the brain break is wonderful. I am responsible. I make sure that I don’t have to make any childcare decisions for 12 hours. I get a Lyft home. I would be willing to bet, there are many other mothers just like me.
Also, living in a poor state, whose budget woes are real, I see the fiscal potential. Louisiana is in a sad state courtesy of Bobby Jindal. There’s still utter gridlock, because there’s no reserve fund anywhere. Taxes need to be raised, but nobody wants to raise them. Nothing happens. Pharmaceutical dispensaries are set and running in Louisiana. An additional dispensary, not directly related to pharmaceuticals, is also in Shreveport (and presumably there are others across the state). The basic infrastructure to make Louisiana a lot of money in fast succession is there.
Why pot was criminalized is beyond me. Maybe we have more and better information now. Maybe we were just daft. Who knows. The point is, keeping it criminalized, especially when it is less harmful to your body than alcohol and cigarettes, is just waste on the part of the states. Regulate it. Tax it to death. If Louisiana got on board, suddenly a state so deep in the red, might actually see black.
Oh, and don’t drive while high. That is dangerous. But so is driving drunk, which you should know. Get a Lyft/Uber. That’s what they’re there for.