Sunday, September 12, 2010
Take it easy... and be careful
But hey, I don’t blame them, nor do I judge them. I’m just lucky enough to have legal substances as my addictions – cigarettes, coffee and the occasional fermented stuff, preferably bourbon. And don’t get me wrong, unlike Bill Clinton, I did inhale, and again, luckily for me, I never really liked it.
On the other hand, another website, About.com, claims that “Within a few minutes after smoking marijuana, the heart begins beating more rapidly and the blood pressure drops,” and that “Because of the lower blood pressure and higher heart rate, researchers found that users' risk for a heart attack is four times higher within the first hour after smoking marijuana…” It is also claimed that “the active ingredient in marijuana, delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, acts on cannabinoid receptors on nerve cells and influences the activity of those cells…" And that “Many cannabinoid receptors are found in the parts of the brain that influence pleasure, memory, thought, concentration, sensory and time perception, and coordinated movement.” And marijuana, when eaten/digested rather than smoked, causes “hallucinations, delusions, impaired memory and disorientation.” On top of all that, some argue that marijuana is a gateway drug – once you get addicted to it, there’s a bigger chance that you’ll want to try stronger drugs.
I know, it’s just so much easier to cross the road wherever convenient, instead of using the overpass or walking the extra few meters to get to the pedestrian lane; it is much easier to make an illegal u-turn than to drive the few extra blocks to get to where you’re going; and perhaps a few grams of marijuana, the occasional high, really is no big deal. But the fact is, these are illegal, and going against the law brings with it a lot of risks.
I do know people, some close to me, some I love, who smoke pot. At times I myself have been an enabler – either by not doing anything at all or making it easier for them to satisfy their cravings. I myself have at times justified their addiction, mostly by believing their own arguments about the “harmlessness” and “benefits” of marijuana. A lot of them have told me to back off, to never tell them what they’re doing is wrong. To them, what can I say?
Be careful, be very careful. Crossing the road where you’re not supposed to is very risky. And sometimes it may well just be worth walking the few extra meters to the pedestrian lane after all.