Decriminalization of Marijuana

Recently, at the opening of the new law term, Chief Justice Ivor Archie made a bold call for the decriminalization of marijuana when kept in small quantities for medical and recreational use. This call has sparked a national debate in the island of Trinidad and Tobago. The Chief Justice is a born again believer and the recent recipient of a National Award, so eyebrows were raised within the Protestant community.

II Timothy 3:1-5

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud,
blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent,
fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

From this portion of scripture we realize that society will be on the down turn as we get closer to the end.

Marijuana_big

Marijuana is well known for the ‘high’ that it creates, there are a few key chemicals within this substance that causes its effects:

  1. Acetaldehyde: this chemical is also found in tobacco smoke, and can cause DNA damage with the possibility to initiate cancer development.
  2. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): This is the main intoxicating component of marijuana, research has found that this can cause brain-cancer cells in mice to self destruct. (however, using it to cure human brain cancer is still a very long way off.) This is the component that gives this drug its otherworldly and edgy high, and causes paranoia and hallucinations.
  3. Cannabidinol (CBD): This is the component of the drug that gives it the sedating power.

While the Chief Justice’s rationale to free up small quantities of drug are listed as follows:

  1. Free of a clogged Judicial system
  2. Keep young offenders from jail time and criminal records

It may then be better to make adjustments where offenders are made to pay fines and do community service.

Also it may be instructive to see how North America has dealt with this issue, the various states have taken 4 basic positions:

  1. In most of the states, it is still illegal
  2. In a few states, Medical Marijuana is allowed
  3. In a few States, Marijuana is decriminalised (less that 1 oz, 28 grams is allowed; there is no incarceration for possession; fines are imposed)
  4. Medical Marijuana allowed and it is decriminalized

Medical benefits:

  • It mitigates severe and chronic pain
  • Brings relief for muscle spasms and nausea

Potential Dangers:

  • Driving under the influence of Marijuana – drunk driving remains a challenge to deal with, how will we cope with persons who go behind the wheel of a vehicle when totally spaced out with marijuana? How many innocent lives will be lost by this?
  • Drug pushers will be transformed into ‘caregivers’
  • 10% of regular users become addicted (note it is less addictive than alcohol – 15% and cigarettes – 32%).
  • Loss of memory and a decline in decision making capabilities
  • It has been clinically linked to depression, anxiety, schizophrenia (especially in young men)
  • Adolescent use doubles the chances of schizophrenia later in life
  • Respiratory illness and damage to the immune system
  • It is a gateway drug and can encourage persons to get into harder and more dangerous drugs

CONCLUSION:

The ills of decriminalizing marijuana still out weigh the slim and questionable benefits, by far. In trying to ease up a bloated and inefficient judicial system, let’s not unleash a medical and social nightmare upon our land. This is a door that Satan would love to see opened, so let’s pray that this does not happen.

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