Saturday, November 10, 2012

Marijuana and libertarianism

The people arguing that marijuana does not cause mental problems are often people who already smoke it.   I am not concerned about the bias in their argument, but rather their objectivity while doing their own research. In some cases, this is compounded with the by-products of the public education system, including their reduced ability to learn and capacity to focus.

“A current literature search that includes outcomes from valid medical marijuana studies reveals that marijuana can damage short term memory, distort perceptions, and impair judgment and complex motor skills while altering heart rate. Marijuana intoxication can also cause anxiety attacks, paranoia and lethargy, which can seriously affect driving skills (Zweben & O’Connell, 1992; Shalala, 1995; Wickelgren, 1997; Solowij, 1998; Porter, 1999; Stephens, 1999; Joy et al, 2000).” -  Jim Porter, MA, NCACII, LAC

Dangers of addiction and freedom of choice
You could argue that if people were given enough information about the dangers of addiction, then they should not be deprived of their freedom and they could be held responsible for their own mental healthcare (and not require others to pay for it). However, can you really hold a person accountable when they have damaged their brain, or when they are suffering the consequences of a serious car accident?
In a sense, this is the same problem as suicide. It is illegal because we value life, even when the owner of that life (temporarily) does not. The defense of life is the first and most important role of the Federal government. This is why true libertarians should be on the side of the protection of life on all life issues.

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