The people who call the shots are sure of it. They need to protect us against cannabis. This little plant constitutes a big risk to your health. Yet, how realistic is this image?
Completely unrealistic, according to science. But the people who dictate policies are not listening.
Do you want to live a long and prosperous life, but would you still like to add a little colour it every now and then? If there was an official recommendation seal for recreational drugs, cannabis would take the number one spot. A joint is relatively safe. Up to 114 timers safer than alcohol in fact, as shown in a recent study.
Least risky drug
In this study, scientists tested a number of known stimulants (it's a dirty job, but someone has to do it). They've determined the difference between a conventional dose and lethal dose. With alcohol, this gap is the smallest. With cannabis the largest. Meaning that killing yourself by overdosing on cannabis is highly unlikely.
That doesn't mean that smoking or otherwise using cannabis is completely safe, but it shows that a few tokes are not as devastating on the body as you would be led to believe. Important to note: it's also about quantity. A glass of wine now and again is less harmful than smoking a joint every day.
Be Wise, Vaporize
But if you want to reduce harm even further, you'd do well not to smoke at all. For example by using a vaporizer or by using edibles. This lets you prevent the intake of harmful by-products you really don't want.
Pigs in the mud
It's deeply tragic these facts don't seem to register with the people that are in control of the Netherlands. The department of justice wants to completely eliminate cannabis cultivation. To 'protect us', as they are fully convinced that cannabis is a big threat to your well-being.
Bart Nieuwenhuizen, chief prosecutor and member of the hemp task force. "We need to get rid of the romantic image of a happy spliff smoker. Soft drugs make people sluggish. It's about organized crime that undermines society as well as something that is very harmful to public health."
That 'romantic image' is a prejudice (we're working on it). There wouldn't be any crime without the repressive legislation. As to public health, the truth is - at the very least - much more nuanced. Dutch legislators are bathing in ignorance like pigs bathing in the mud.