I was excited to see a familiar seven-pointed plant on the bottom half of The Quad’s Feb. 28, 2006 edition. My eyes quickly honed in on the article in hopes of some progressive news or a new medical report on cannabis.What I read, however, was the same old condemnation of pot. I truly believe the writer copy-and-pasted straight from a government Website to The Quad!
Since the turn of the last century, the government has fervently propagated pages and airwaves with anti-marijuana sentiment. It is as if the Power-That-Be (from now on PB, cause I’m lazy, maaaan) are truly scared that if we spark a joint or pack a bowl we will collectively realize they’re an unjust and impeding on our civil liberties and thus, revolt!
They have us backwards, though; we’re not violent people, but we do see through their facade.
Joking aside, the PB must realize that smoking pot isn’t a criminal concern, it is a health concern! It is as simple as that.
All cannabis concerns are common sense. It will affect your lungs. Admittedly, my endurance has gone down since I smoked, but I also stopped being as athletic; surely that too is contributing to my lack of breath.
With that, you may get cancer from it, though there hasn’t been a single documented case of such.
Also, you should do it in moderation. You guilty ones out there know the morning after you get high, you are sometimes burnt out. You tune out; you’re drained and foggy. You can, contrary to popular belief, still operate your mind and body.
You should never mix cannabis with other drugs, especially alcohol. And comparing it to the legal substance of alcohol, I personally would rather be burnt out than hung over.
Lester Grinspoon, author of “Marihuana Reconsidered,” and faculty (emeritus) of the Harvard Medical School in the Department of Psychiatry, wrote that people categorize marijuana use in two ways: “medicinal” and “recreational.” He adds one more: aesthetic.
He wrote that marijuana has the ability “to catalyze ideas and insights, heighten the appreciation of music and art, or deepen emotional and sexual intimacy.”
Some examples could be any of the Beatles’ albums after 1965 (that is, after they smoked for the first time with Bob Dylan – ironically, their best music), Bob Marley’s music, Dylan’s lyrics, Walt Whitman’s poetry, Allen Ginsberg’s poetry, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s magical realism, Cezanne’s art, Renoir’s, Van Gogh’s, Picasso’s, Braque’s, Pollack’s – and must I even mention “Chapelle’s Show,” “Family Guy,” “Donnie Darko,” or “Dazed and Confused” when one is high?
Brilliance is a word for it.
One’s THC-induced awe and detail for nature, music, painting, poetry, is also very misconstrued by the mainstream. It is under appreciated and pronounced false simply because one is high. I disagree, when does a person not perceive things? Perception is indeed everything, as Allen Ginsberg said, “These perceptions are permanent – any deep aesthetic experience leaves a trace, and an idea of what to look for that can be checked back later and my aesthetic and spiritual beliefs have grown stronger because of contemplation whilst high.”
I have taken up hobbies such as studying Henri Matisse and reading the Bhagavad-Gita because of “high happenings.”
Also, if I am being honest, I must admit that aesthetics is not the sole reason most people indulge in pot – it is very social. Friendships do evolve over the peace pipe (hence its moniker) and there is nothing wrong with that. Some of my close friends are such because of all-night conversations about infinite, atheism, communism, Catholicism, Impressionism and heroism. Talking about such culture and society effecting “-isms” should not be discouraged since it shows that we are exercising our critical thinking skills.
Not only that but I’ve learned how to spot odd time signatures while high. These same acquaintances also end up jamming for hours on end with acoustic guitars, mandolins, violins, drums, bongos, djembes, and electric basses. Pretty creative way to spend a Saturday evening.
Perhaps I am just mad.
Do not misunderstand me, there are times we stare at an iTunes visualizer listening to Pink Floyd, Sigur Ros and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Nine times out of ten, this recreational activity has me in a safe place, too, minding my own business. I do not see how the PB think we’re a threat, to whom? To each other perhaps? I’m sure nine undergrads out of 10 will tell you about a drunken scuffle, ruckus, brawl, donnybrook or melee this last weekend but how many will tell you of two high kids going at it – rare exceptions, if any.
My point is, the PB should not be condemning it, they should be educating about it – truly educating about it, the health risks as well as its benefits, and its aesthetic value in the future.
Now, as I conclude – before I get into how hemp can better our lives if cultivated, refined and manufactured properly – I’ll end my little rant. Peace, maaan.
Anonymous is a student at West Chester University.