July 11, 2007

Exploring marijuana from an Integral perspective is fun and educational. There are far more partial lies than partial truths in mainstream society thanks to a government misinformation program funded in large part by pharmaceutical companies who don’t want us growing anything cheaply that might make us feel better than Prozac does (heck, Prozac causes sexual dysfunction and dysentery while pot provides just the opposite). The partial truths about pot are almost exclusively the domain of the upper right quadrant: e.g. we have cannabis receptors in our brain; smoking cannabis irritates the lining in the lungs, increases heart rate and blood pressure, etc. Among the lies, marijuana is misrepresented as a “gateway drug.” A gateway drug is supposed to lead users to “harder” drugs like heroin. This theory has never been supported and any scientist with half-an-inch of forehead knows it mistakes correlation for causation. Just because users of heroin previously used marijuana doesn’t mean the latter caused the former. It is akin to noting that the majority of people with pilot’s licenses had driver’s licenses first and then concluding that getting a driver’s license will cause you to get a pilot’s license. In the same way we could make the argument that diapers are “gateway pants.”

From the perspective of the lower left quadrant marijuana prohibition was motivated by racist sentiments in the early 20th century. Marijuana was viewed as part of the dangerous culture of Mexican immigrants and African-Americans. The sentiment is still in evidence today: good, white folks use consciousness constrictors like alcohol and that is that. It is no coincidence that the alcohol lobby also spends a good deal of money on marijuana prohibition.

~ From Let’s Get Edgy: An Integral View of Marijuana by Elliott Ingersoll

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