Right off the bat, you’ve got to distrust anyone called the Foundation for a Drug-Free World. Might as well be called the Coalition for an Ice-Free Antarctica or the Alliance for a Sand-Free Sahara. Not only is it a completely unattainable goal, but also an undesirable one. Do we really want a world without Lipitor, OxyContin, or Prozac? (Not good drugs, silly, they mean the bad drugs.)
This is one of thirteen little booklets, similar to the “Man or Monkey” and “Are You Saved” cartoon booklets you find left by religious proselytizers in phone booths, that you can order for free from the Foundation for a Drug-Free World. The 24-page booklet on marijuana may just set an Anslinger Rating record.
Let’s start with Page 7, displayed above, which compares alcohol and marijuana.
Alcohol consists of one substance only: ethanol.
Which, we should note, is a poison that is toxic to healthy cells and organs. When metabolized by the body, it produced acetaldehyde, an organic chemical linked to cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract. Recent studies show that lifetime use of alcohol corresponds to a greatly increased risk of cancer.
Marijuana contains more than 400 known chemicals, including the same cancer causing substances found in tobacco smoke.
Yes, which makes marijuana much like every other plant that also contains hundreds of chemicals. The carcinogens are found in marijuana smoke, but also found in marijuana smoke are cannabinoids that seem to mitigate the carcinogens. In thirty years of study, Dr. Donald Tashkin tried to find a link between marijuana smoke and cancer and instead found a protective effect against cancer.
Alcohol is eliminated from the body in a few hours, but THC stays in the body for weeks, possibly months, depending on the length and intensity of usage. …the chemicals in marijuana, some of them cancer-causing, remain in the body long after the drug is taken.
Alcohol is eliminated from the body by the liver, which over time with drinking can no longer do the task, one gets cirrhosis, and one dies. Meanwhile, THC is actually metabolized by the body within hours, and the remaining inactive metabolites, THC-COOH and glucuronide, are neither impairing nor carcinogenic.
THC damages the immune system. Alcohol does not.
These studies purporting that marijuana harms the immune system are ridiculous and achieved by using impossibly high doses of THC to cells in a lab. No studies have shown that pot smoking among humans has any effect on the immune system. HIV patients using cannabinoid therapies have actually seen increases in their T-cell counts. However, it does seem very clear that acute and chronic alcohol exposure causes severe immunosuppression in humans.
That’s just one page in a 24-page mini-booklet, and already we’ve found five distortions or outright lies. Won’t you join me for some more debunking after the break?
Here are the rest of the lies, distortions, and just plain weirdness from the booklet. In the interest of time I’m just throwing out a snarky caption for each one, but you can click the pictures for the link to a webpage with the science to debunk this garbage. — “R”R