Tag Archives: Drug Policy Alliance

Foodies, Don’t be Fooled if Michael Pollan Writes About Psychedelics

Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma

Foodies who admire Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma include parents opposed to marijuana and its manipulation into an increasingly potent, dangerous drug.

Pollan is writing a book about possible medical applications for psychedelics, which would fit nicely into an agenda promoted by the Drug Policy Alliance, MAPS and Erowid.  Surreptitiously, these pro-drug lobbyists and groups are trying to legalize all drugs. If they get popular writers on board, it will be so much easier.

Psychedelic drugs lead to altered consciousness, changes in heart rate and hallucinations.  In some regards, marijuana is a psychedelic, but not in the same way that LSD, MDMA and others.

MAPS pushes pot as treatment for PTSD, even though an important study from Yale suggests that pot worsens PTSD in veterans.  Bad psychiatric treatments are nothing new.  At one time, the public also believed in lobotomies as a treatment for mental illness.

Drug Policy Alliance uses “social justice” reasons to push for legalization of all drugs, first through decriminalization.*  The social justice angle isn’t a good argument, because drug dealers, legal and illegal, target minorities and poor communities.  Dig a little deeper and social justice appears to be the excuse, not the true reason the DPA argues for drug legalization.

Psychedelics, Alternative Reality and Psychosis

Drug advocates are promoting many psychedelics as medicine: psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, marijuana, MDMA (Ecstasy) and ketamine.  Psychiatrists of the ’50s and ’60s experimented with these drugs as psychiatric treatments. The most famous one, Scottish Psychiatrist R.D. Laing, experimented with LSD to treat some patients.  Although he had genuine empathy towards the patients, Laing’s methods and those of his followers are often considered worse than failure.  (Psychiatrist Isidora Ranjit-Singh explains: Laing “didn’t understand the interaction between illicit substances such as LSD and cannabis and mental health: illicit drugs are a contributory factor in psychosis. LSD is an awful drug that can result in seemingly psychotic flashbacks which can continue after the patient has stopped using it.”)

As long as we do not know the cause of many psychological issues, using psychedelics is like playing with fire.  Emil Kraepelin, father of modern Psychiatry, maintained that catatonia and schizophrenia wouldn’t be solved until we know their cause.  It doesn’t always boil down to genetics.  When the root cause of a mental issue is trauma, there are successful therapeutic models and we don’t need new experimental drugs.

As for schizophrenia, marijuana is the one known trigger which can lead to this condition of permanent psychosis.

Psychedelics Study is Chance to Learn from Past Mistakes

Movers and shakers behind “medical” marijuana use the term “compassion” as a marketing scheme.  To avoid FDA scrutiny, they devised a scam, recorded on videotapes, to bring about full legalization.  Perhaps they’re pushing new “medicinal” uses for hallucinogenic drugs  for similar reasons.

Ethan Nadelmann, formerly executive director of Drug Policy Alliance, explained the underlying plan on Reddit.   “Michael Pollan’s forthcoming book on psychedelics and medicine will take media interest to yet another level. The more people know about this, the faster psychedelics will be legally accepted as medicines.”  Nadelmann engages his followers with wishful thinking.  In a TED talk, he said: “Our desire to alter our consciousness may be as fundamental as our desire for food, companionship, and sex.”

When Pollan has spoken to the press, he mentions psychedelics as  “palliative” care in people facing the end of life.  It sounds familiar, because the pot lobbyists initially promoted medical marijuana for end-of-life care.  In reality, it’s mostly young men with pain who use “medical” marijuana, not the cancer and AIDs patients for whom it was intended.  More recently pot advocates promote it to treat psychiatric disorders.

If hallucinogens can be used help in controlled settings, would those who become “caregivers” practice snake oil medicine? Would they set up they type of shams that plague “medical” marijuana?  Again the public could be tricked, since everyone has compassion for the terminally ill.

There are strong ethical reasons not to endorse psychedelics, or to give so much power to psychiatrists and gurus. It would entail knowingly utilizing drugs that can make certain people worse.  Furthermore, it would put incredible power into the hands of “caregivers”  and psychiatrists. If teens get the idea that a drug is “medicinal,” they will think it safe to use –by anyone on any occasion.

When the US Government Has been “Right”

Although the US government gave some bad dietary advice over the past decades, it has revised some of the mistakes.  Diet dictocrats now recommend eating eggs, the right kind of fats and fewer grains. Americans are eating better because they listened to critics such as Michael Pollan and many others.

The US government’s historical evaluation of and classification of marijuana in 1970 was never wrong.   Judges and the FDA have consistently rejected the reclassification of marijuana.

 

Pollan didn’t really discuss the negative consequences of marijuana while writing an earlier book, The Botany of Desire. Hopefully, he has read the recent information about marijuana as a trigger for psychosis, which is plentiful.  Many new academic studies have been published since his book came out in 2001.

Too often, therapies used in psychiatry are not as effective as people initially believe.   We need take a skeptical view of psychedelics, also. While Nadelmann wants the book to bring acceptance to psychedelics, Pollan has given interviews which don’t suggest that goal.  His book sounds more informational than promotional.

Drug advocates wish to normalize drug use in order to capitalize on it.  By using drugs, they hope to bypass the hard work it takes to obtain true spiritual growth. Modern America is not comparable to the ancient, ritualistic and shamanistic cultures that traditionally used psychedelics.  We need our food to keep us alive, but we don’t need intoxicating, hallucinogenic drugs to sustain us.

* Drug Policy Alliance recently put out a paper on decriminalizing all drugs, a first step towards legalization.  This group often talks about Portugal’s decriminalization of drugs while suggesting the country has legalized which is false.  Portugal does drug assessments and treatment, which DPA does not want.   Please fight against the current attempt to legalize marijuana — through the backdoor.

Our Growing Problem of Traumatized Children

Photos of passed out parents with toddlers have surfaced everywhere — the images of our addiction epidemic.  (Above photo is from the East Liverpool, Ohio, Police Department.) Though it’s often heroin, fentanyl or opiates that kill, most of the young people dying today began their illicit drug use with pot.  (Read Part 1,   Part 2 and Part 3. )  We have created a new generation of traumatized children.

“All of the parents I know who use marijuana are terrible parents,” a  fan of poppot.org’s, who is in her 20s, wrote to us recently.  Many newspapers have written about the children of the opioid crisis, but pot-using parents also contribute to the crisis.  We’ve tracked 80 child deaths related to caregivers’ marijuana use since November, 2012.

When those who were traumatized children put their own children in abusive situations, it’s easy to understand their failings.  Selena Hitt’s boyfriend accidentally shot her baby, after both of them had smoked pot. Selena had been raised in foster care.  Her mother died when she was very young, and most of the time her father was not available to care for her.

Policy More than other Factors Creates Problem of Drug Use

However, there’s a group of non-traumatized adults abusing their children because the US government has allowed  the normalization of marijuana.  Because marijuana users can lose interest and are susceptible to psychosis, it’s particularly important not to use pot if you have children.

Up to eighty percent of child abuse and neglect involves substance abuse, a fact that violence prevention groups ignore or deny.*  The denial is helpful to the strategy of making drug use socially acceptable. NORML and Marijuana Policy Project encourage marijuana use, while Drug Policy Alliance wishes to legalize all drugs and thus normalize drug use.

The same groups that promote legalization suggest that harm reduction strategies work.  Policy based on harm reduction promotes “responsible use” of drugs, and promotes a lie.  Recently, a five-year-old drowned, because her babysitter used pot at 8:30 a.m. and stopped watching her.

The Widespread Problem of Traumatized Children

One of our Parents Opposed to Pot members in Colorado has a 13-year-old son who suffers from PTSD.   His older brother threatened and terrified him while in a marijuana-induced psychosis.   (The older son, now 17, is in recovery, while the younger son is being treated with EMDR for PTSD.)

States that decide to legalize pot must realize that their decision profound effects on the friends and families of marijuana users.  Our blog on suicides tells of teens and young adults who lived mainly in environments that normalized marijuana use.  For the most part, they did not use marijuana because of trauma, although one was a veteran.

Many parents of these suffering children use drugs only because it’s social and considered harmless. Michael Goldsby, addictions instructor at College of the Redwoods said, “Risk factors for drug problems include availability of drugs, positive peer attitudes towards drug use [and] community norms that accept drug misuse. Drug and alcohol use is accepted and even encouraged in our community”  Goldsby teaches college in the Emerald Triangle region.

Drug-Related Deaths far Outnumber Deaths by Cars or Guns

Genetic and environmental factors that influence drug use are compounded by a society that normalizes drug use.  The Center for Disease Control recently released statistics about accidental deaths:

52,404 drug-related deaths, up 11%.

37,757 died in car crashes, an increase of 12%.

36,252  gun deaths, including homicides and suicides

As we try to cope with a growing number of children affected by ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences), the United States is embarking on a program to legalize all drugs.  Little children are losing their parents at an alarming rate, adding to the trauma and ACE scores of the future.

Instead of protecting the people, politicians are allowing marijuana lobbyists to dictate policy.  (Billionaires, marijuana companies and pro-legalization groups donated more than $22 million to legalize marijuana in California.)   Professionals need to counter the media bias and bias in polls which favors drug legalization.

Taking away children from drug-using mothers is not the answer, because separation from the moms also creates traumatized children. Child protection workers are in a Catch 22 situation. Techniques described in Part 2 can perhaps help the children traumatized by parents’ drug use.

The 13-year-old boy described above has an excellent counselor for his his PTSD.  EMDR is working right now and providing the healing needed at this time.   A postscript will present more advice on how to provide help for traumatized children.

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*Our information is mainly from CASA Columbia.  A good current reference Ed Gogek’s book, Marijuana Debunked.  Several studies are mentioned in our six-part series on child abuse deaths related to pot.   Parents Opposed to Pot has tried to share stories with Futures Without Violence, but they banned us from posting on their Facebook page.

Social Justice is a Pretext Legalizers Use to Get Support

Social Justice is a pretext, the handy catch phrase to get people to support the legalization of pot.  The idea doesn’t come from disadvantaged minorities.   “Marijuana legalization is the worst way forward to reforming drug policy for the minority community,” claims Will Jones, founder of Two is Enough D.C.

It was easy to cut through the illusion by watching Ethan Nadelmann at the Democratic National Convention last summer.  Nadelmann, director of Drug Policy Alliance, was bragging to his supporters about how profitable the marijuana industry is.  At the end of the video, when the cameras was on him, he added “and don’t forget social justice.”  It sounded like an afterthought.  He must have been joking.  Nadelmann makes at least $280,000 a year to advocate for marijuana legalization, a salary funded by George Soros’ yearly gifts of $4 million to DPA.  The Drug Policy Alliance advocates for the legalization of all drugs.

In Denver, the pot businesses have located mainly in low-income minority neighborhoods, taking advantage of those with the least amount of political clout.  Buzz Feed reports that black people are being shut out of America’s weed boom.  Blacks own only about one percent of the 3,600 storefront marijuana dispensaries in the United States.  Hispanics may own even less. For the most part, whites alone have benefited from the huge profits in the weed industry.

Jones, whose family has always been involved in the Civil Rights movement, is enraged by the social justice message. “If you aren’t a minority, maybe legalization does look ok because you’re not going to have the deluge of (pot) stores in your community,”  Liquor shops are on every block in his neighborhood.  Jones admonishes the marijuana industry for “cherry picking criminal justice issues to conveniently pick a statistic that helps them.”  Of the places that voted to legalize pot, only Washington DC has managed to stay free of commercial pot stores.

Where’s the Real Social Justice in a Mind-Destroying Drug?

We question the sincerity of those who promote “social justice” as a reason to legalize marijuana.   What is the “social justice” in promoting a substance that lowers your IQ, weakens memory and directly contributes to the mental illness as a causal factor?   Even without drug testing, using pot makes some people lazy and less likely to get a job.

CADCA (Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America) has always  encouraged communities to find youth ambassadors who are black or brown, because preventing drug use among minorities was a primary concern.  Impoverished youth–who are often Black or Hispanic – have the most to lose if they use drugs.  Youth who frequently use marijuana are 60 percent more likely to drop out of school and 7x more likely to attempt suicide.   Drug users – with or without drug testing –aren’t good job candidates and often can’t hold onto a job.

Legalizers claim they don’t support underage pot use. They say pot is for adults only, but the age limit of 21 doesn’t keep alcohol away from minors.  The problem of underage use is more  pronounced for marijuana.  It’s a fact that 19- and 20-year-olds use marijuana more frequently than other ages.  Most people give up weed in adulthood, except for addicts, a statistic the marijuana industry hopes to change.

A recent study out of the University of California, Davis, showed that marijuana users are much inclined to experience more downward mobility than their non-using peers.   Even compared to alcohol abusers, the hardcore marijuana users are less affluent than their parents.

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Government duty is to protect citizens. There’s no social justice in promoting a dangerous drug, Those who profit from legalizing pot say it’s “social justice,” but minorities see it differently.

It’s unfortunate that blacks and Hispanics are arrested more frequently for pot than whites.  Instead of encouraging less drug use,  DPA, NORML and the ACLU manipulate opinion.  Financial opportunists connected to these lobbies pretend pot is harmless and that arrest discrepancies will be solved by legalization.   Is an arrest so bad?  If it stops a disadvantaged youth from going onto drug addiction, that person’s future will hold more promise.  “I want to make sure our children get a clear and unambiguous message as it relates to drug use it is wrong and it is dangerous,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in 2012.  At the time, 87 percent of the time cases were dismissed for those arrested in Chicago for marijuana.

Alternatives that don’t involve Legalization

Those who believe in social justice, should look into policies to reduce drug-related crimes and its ugly bedfellow, drug addiction.      Even if the “war on drugs didn’t work,” it’s false to claim legalization and incarceration are the only options.  Those trying to legalize marijuana intentionally scramble the messages so the public confuses decriminalization with legalization.

Drug courts and treatment have been criminal justice options for more than 20 years.  There are many choices for reforming drug policy which don’t involve legalization.

Convincing people that hundreds of thousands of people are in prison for marijuana use only is one of the false narratives of the legalization movement.  The Sacramento Bee recently investigated and couldn’t find a single low level marijuana offender in California prisons.   Criminal justice experts agree that loosening drug possession laws would have little effect on the total numbers in prison.  There are plenty of ways to revise and improve criminal justice without harming people, and drug use harms people.

Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey recently explained that crime shot up after legalization in Colorado.  In fact, the homicide rate was higher in 2015 than it had ever been.    (Marijuana is the drug most likely to trigger crime and debilitating conditions of  mental illness.)    Homelessness as a result of legalization has also skyrocketed.  Denver’s Mayor Michael Hancock blamed marijuana legalization on a violent rampage in the mall last summer.  

The Clearest Motivation of the Marijuana Legalization Ballots

Kevin Sabet, President of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), said: “An exploitative new industry, reminiscent of Big Tobacco, has hoisted the banner of “Ending the War on Drugs” for an ulterior, but far more straightforward motive—making a lot of money at the expense of public health.   He explains that marijuana legalization ballots are written and advertised entirely for the benefit the industry’s bottom line.

Since legalization, the number of actual marijuana users has increased to 13% of people ages 12 and older.   Thirty percent of those users, or 6 million people have Cannabis Use Disorder.  The business model of increasing addiction and making money off of those who are addicted is working.

Legalization is a scheme of those in the top one percent to enhance their bottom lines.  Many who invested in the California legalization ballot actually hope to make a whole lot more money from it.   A recent headline claimed that the marijuana industry is a 25 billion dollar opportunity.   Investors are hoping that more of the current market can move out of the black market.   Evidence from Colorado and Washington shows that cartels are emboldened by legalization and the black market still thrives.

NORML and DPA are pushing a substance known to damage mental health but use evasive statements about these issues.  “There’s always been this link between cannabis and schizophrenia,” a NORML official said.   Discussing drug use by people with very high IQs, guys like Steve Jobs or Ethan Nadelmann, doesn’t address what pot use does to the average person.   Most people have average IQs and lowering their learning ability and job prospects is not “social justice.”   Making people more vulnerable to mental illness is not “social justice” either.  Marijuana Policy Project promotes a falsehood that marijuana is safer than alcohol, another delusion. This marijuana industry and drug promotion organizations are not compassionate — as they pretend to be — but devious.

How Media Misleads the Parents to Get Votes

“More than any other demographic, seniors are poised to be the biggest pot users in America should cannabis be legalized. It’s law-abiding adults who will begin using pot in greater numbers, and the associated lameness of watching their parents ripping a bong will, if anything, probably decrease teen use.”  Columnist John Michael made this claim in an article for Huffington Post.

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Here’s a problem from Washington, which has high acceptance of pot use. A Centralia mom was dared by friends to share bong with her toddler.

Did this writer grow up inside a bubble? In Colorado, two different fourth graders were selling pot on the playground, just three to four months after commercial marijuana made a debut Continue reading