I won’t try to be subtle about this. When I say that we know too much about marijuana for it to be illegal, I am trying to make two points.
First and foremost, I am astonished that people in democratic countries that proclaim their commitment to individual rights at every possible occasion, have — for decades — accepted the legal argument that citizens should be arrested for using a plant because it might not be “harmless.”
Prohibitionist propaganda is often introduced with the statement that “marijuana isn’t harmless… like we all thought back in the Sixties.¨ Of course, if we all thought it was harmless then, why was it illegal?
Well, very simply, nothing is harmless for everyone, under all circumstances and at all doses, and, for many reasons, harmlessness is not a criterion for legalizing anything. Obviously, many things that everyone recognizes as potentially deadly… alcohol, tobacco, motorcycles, rock climbing, etc., are legal. Some people even say that guns are not harmless.
Ironically, cannabis is one of the few substances which does not have a possible lethal dose. Too much aspirin can cause fatal internal bleeding and even too much water can be deadly by upsetting the body’s electrolyte balance.