Can of Bliss Part Three


In terms of plant survival, getting back to my original point – it begs the question…Like any species of living thing, plants seek to survive and have its progeny survive. 


Success is relative. The more relatives you have, the more successful you are.


It would behoove a plant species to link itself with humans, since humans are by far the dominant species on this planet; and as a result, have humans take the time and effort to insure its survival. 


In terms of plant survival, getting back to my original point – it begs the question…Like any species of living thing, plants seek to survive and have its progeny survive. 


Success is relative. The more relatives you have, the more successful you are.


It would behoove a plant species to link itself with humans, since humans are by far the dominant species on this planet; and as a result, have humans take the time and effort to insure its survival. 


THC, the active drug in cannabis, is classified as a mild hallucinogenic, the same class of drug as LSD or psilocybin: the active drug in mushrooms. THC is not nearly as strong as other hallucinogenic drugs, but it’s the same general high. Music sounds better, colors are deeper, everything seems funny; hunky dory. Food is far tastier.


Today, marijuana plants are pampered like no other life form on this planet. Video cameras are placed in grow rooms so growers can observe plants without interfering with them, the way concerned mothers place baby monitors into cribs so they can monitor their babies while they sleep. The cameras, the monitors, the 24-7 attention – they are for protection of the species. Marijuana is cultivated all over the world and the growers treat their plants like children; like royalty, bred for specificity of traits.


One might ask – does marijuana have a consciousness? Does pot know how much it is prized by the human race, the most dominant species on the planet? Does cannabis know that while most agricultural products are sold by the pound or bushel, its buds are sold by the gram? Did hemp plan this? Definitely, evolution played a big role; that is, the creation of the THC chemical alkaloid has ensured the survival of the marijuana plant. 


It begs the question – did pot plan this? Does marijuana, or any plant for that matter, have a consciousness? If a plant has a consciousness, is it a collective consciousness? If so, does this collective consciousness or unconsciousness extend beyond a plant’s own species? Do plants species compete with one another for life? Can plants communicate without words and taunt each other? “Who’s getting the sunlight now, bitch!?!” 


Did marijuana hundreds of thousands or millions of years ago evolve whereby one of its chemical components would have a direct effect on the human brain? This effect, forever bonding the plant with humans, causing the most dominant species on earth to dumb itself down to a primal state – I want food now! Ha! Ha! Ha! That feels so good! – Did hemp’s flavoricious (sic) wiles intentially cause easily addicted humans to grow more of this plant, becoming dependent on this plant, forever insuring the plant’s survival?


It wasn’t until 1988 – that would be roughly six thousand years after humans first began smoking cannabis that humans first fully understood, scientifically, how and why marijuana affects humans the way it does. Researchers found that the human brain has receptors that accept this chemical THC found naturally in cannabis. And these receptors allow THC to affect three parts of the brain – appetite, pain, and memory. 


Let’s look at these three areas individually. Appetite – Smoking pot will make you hungry, even if you are full, even if you have NO appetite. For this reason THC is useful in treating serious or just practicing anorexic/bulimic men, women and teenagers. This sudden craving for food is called ‘the munchies’ to stoners. Pot smokers are called ‘stoners’ cuz they get stoned


This hunger impulse is the reason why pot is so popular on Thanksgiving Day, cuz after gorging yourself with turkey and mashed potatoes and gravy and having to undo your belt buckle, there’s no way to REALLY enjoy pumpkin pie and ice cream without getting stoned first. Unless you wait till your hunger naturally recedes. You could always force yourself to vomit and then eat the pie.


Pain – Pot also affects the pain center of the brain, alleviating discomfort in most respects to some degree. The effect of marijuana allows the smoker to be in a content state, whereby it is much easier to forget about and cope with an aching back or ovaries, or an upset stomach, or the headaches and tension caused by chemotherapy or dialysis that those afflicted with the absence of working kidneys, like my older brother and Different Strokes’ star Gary Coleman suffer from. Whatchu talking ‘bout Willis?


My older brother lost both his kidneys almost 20 years ago. He was first hospitalized the day the US invaded Iraq in January 1991. We watched the footage of Bush Sr. and General Swartzkopf from my brother’s hospital room. As a result of this affliction, my brother goes to dialysis three times a week for three hours each visit and has done that for almost two decades. And there is no end until he gets a kidney transplant, and that ‘new kidney’ might not even survive in his body; in which case, it’s back to dialysis three times a week. He actually received a kidney transplant in 1996, which died on him. Kidney patients take a lot of medication and his med bills were so high, he began lessening his dose cuz he couldn’t afford the full dose. His transplant kidney died as a result. Whose fault is financial inadequacy when medicine is concerned? Is that Commie talk? Sounds like Commie talk.


When my brother returns home from the clinic three times a week, his body is completely devastated. He tells me that most of the 20-something age patients in his clinic smoke marijuana so they can eat and relax each evening after dialysis. US law, as it is written, as it has been written for the last seventy years, would criminalize these sick Americans, most of whom are working people with families, people who vote, people who have no criminal record – they are sick people who need relief. 


California, via the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, and subsequent legislation in 2003, allows medical marijuana use, by prescription only. My brother is the perfect candidate for medical marijuana.  My brother will NOT get a card because he believes that, at any time, a serious backlash could ensue – this is America; it’s happened before – and because my brother is an elementary school teacher, perhaps if it becomes public record that he ‘smokes pot after dialysis,’ it may cost him his job in the future, the way many Americans who attended Socialist meetings and rallies during the Great Depression, lost their jobs and were blacklisted in the decades that followed. Many hard-working Americans, who out of curiosity and starvation, attended a Socialist meeting in the 1930s had their lives destroyed by branches of the US government. People named names, to keep their jobs. 


In some states, Americans without working kidneys who want nothing more than the ability to pee again – they could be imprisoned for possessing cannabis or smoking cannabis just so they can have an appetite. As of February 2010, only 13 states out of 50 allow medical use of marijuana. The other 37 states punish marijuana users. Many states, like Texas, can jail small possessors for up to 180 days. USMARIJUANALAWSdotCOM has all the current laws at the touch of a button.


In California, the prices of Medical Marijuana are what the peak prices were during Reagan’s war on drugs by the end of the 80’s. By 1989, 1/8 ounce of premium marijuana had gone from 25 dollars in 1984 to 60 dollars by the end of the 80’s; while a gram of premium cocaine dropped from 120 dollars a gram in 1984 to 50 dollars a gram by 1989 – In 5 short years that change took place; and that FOREVER CHANGED DRUG CULTURE IN AMERICA.


Weed, a relatively safe product sold cheaply, was purchased regularly by customers once or twice a week. CRACK was purchased again and again the same day! When you run out, it’s time to run out and get more. Crack caused people to lose their jobs, rob their friends and families. It controlled people’s lives. The evil CRACK replaced safe, from the earth, sweet Mary Jane.


Weed, which had been smoked freely and given away and not really thought about much, became this controlled prized substance, doled out more scarcely, while cocaine use flourished and CRACK smoking suddenly became the sport of choice for athletes not into locker room culture. 

That was the result of Regan’s War on Drugs. Don’t believe me? 


In 1984, Mexican dealers sold marijuana on LA streets in Swaz – Hoover, Pico, Berendo, right behind Loyola High School, Fedora – the entire mid Wilshire district; and certain streets in Hollywood, Palms, and Venice Beach. Even Santa Monica Beach, station 17 was known as the play to cop. 5, 10 dollar bags, half ounces for 30 dollars – it was always a very mellow scene. Police looked the other way, unless you were stupid, or dangerous.


By 1989, all that could be procured on once safe street corners was CRACK! Sold on the same streets as we used to buy mexi-weed was Crack Cocaine – marijuana could no longer be found; and when it was found, it was expensive! This was the direct result of Reagan’s War on Drugs. How do I know this? I know it, cuz I lived it. There are no ideologies here, merely observations. Manuel Noriega was on the CIA payroll from about 1968 to the mid-1980s, till we invaded Panama in 1989.  Columbia-Panama-California; it’s pretty well-documented.  Those tax dollars also funded Death Squads in Central America.  And Oliver North gets a radio-show.  How Perfect!


In 2010, marijuana growers are being incarcerated and prices per pound are over $3000 per. At the same time, growers with ‘cards’ allowing them to grow are making boatloads of cash, while others doing the same thing are being incarcerated. That’s some fucked up shit. It’s giving commercial pot growers a really bad name. If an American wants to grow hemp for his own use, he can be imprisioned or fined, and his plants will be destroyed. US tax dollars are/have been for 30 years, funding these drug enforcement agencies.


The licensed growers don’t want marijuana to be legal, because then the price of pot would drop from thousands of dollars per pound to only hundreds of dollars per pound, or less. If pot were legal, the price would be 5 dollars a gram and that would benefit everybody, except growers and criminal enterprises. Medicare is not covering the cost of marijuana for all its medical users and sufferers are paying way too much money for pot. Everybody is. 


Getting back, in 1988, when researchers first discovered the effects of marijuana on the human brain and pinpointed exactly how THC affects the human brain – that only led to further research. 


Pot affects the memory. Aphasia, a side effect of smoking cannabis, means temporary loss of memory, or complete loss of an episode or short period of time. Most people would agree that stoners tend to be forgetful, as if to say – smoking pot has serious affects on memory retention. One reason the human brain’s receptors allow THC to effect memory is that the brain already produces its own chemical, similar to THC, which blocks memories.

 Why, you might ask, would the human brain have receptors for forgetting?  People concern themselves with memory, trying to remember names, learning, etc. As important as it is for humans to remember things, it is also equally as important for humans to forget things.


Imagine remembering every face you saw everyday, every smell, every event, every stubbed toe, everyday. That would drive any person locoLoco is the Mexican word for crazy. The human brain is equipped with its own self-producing chemicals to induce forgetting. In the same way morphine will deaden the sense of pain in someone’s broken leg, and sometimes endorphins can create the same effect; naturally occurring THC like chemicals in the brain deaden memories completely – as if, in the mind of the person, the events never took place. 

Victims of sexual abuse as children, both boys and girls, completely repress certain painful memories, like being anally penetrated by an older relative: a foster brother or uncle or neighbor. More often than not, that repression is NOT a conscious choice. Selective forgetting is the brain’s way of protecting the organism, sending this THC like chemical to memory centers in the brain to BLOCK that memory. 


Forgetting is a very natural process for any survival mechanism, like the brain using hunger to tell the body to eat, or the brain using pain to tell someone not to walk. The brain produces its own alkaloid to block memories, an alkaloid very similar to THC. 


In this cruel unforgiving world, many humans suffer the unthinkable – soldiers at war witnessing horrific deaths and carnage, their legless buddies dying in their arms, the smell of a roomful of blood; women, men even children being raped; homosexuals and other different peoples being brutally beaten with baseball bats – I’m sure Reginald Denny would love nothing more than to just ‘completely forget’ that he ever got dragged from his truck and beaten within an inch of his life by angry African Americans during the LA riots in 1992. Researchers are close to finding a drug, based on marijuana research, that can basically get rid of bad memories and help finally CURE humans with post-traumatic stress disorder and other debilitating mental illness caused by a bad memory or memories. 


Imagine a drug that can just wipe out a memory, like that penlight in the film, Men in Black. Think of all the post-traumatic stress disorder cases that could be cured. Marijuana is teaching mankind how to remedy its afflictions. Because of marijuana, cannabis, hemp, THC – researchers at Stanford are/were on a quest to perfect that drug/treatment/pill memory eraser. I think it was Stanford. Most of this and other interesting info is laid out in the documentary film, Botany of Desire, which is based on the book of the same name by Michael Pollan.

Presently, many California legislators wish to end this ground-breaking research on the ideology that, ‘Marijuana is harmful to individuals, and to society.’ So this research is currently on hiatus.


It’s for the good of society. I see that. Beliefs, ideologies, people’s feelings about what other people do – people they don’t even know; those mental constructs mean a lot more than peoples’ actual suffering, or never ending hope to live a fulfilling life. I’m being ironic


The Greatest Hope to Humankind’s Happiness! Leery was speaking of hallucinogenics; and LSD is the Drug in Sex, Drugs, Rock n Roll.


It is sometimes difficult for people see the forest for the trees. Jared Diamond in his book Guns, Germs and Steel tells an anecdote about natives of Papua, New Guinea seeing a Marlboro Man ad in a magazine – the image of the healthy rancher outdoors, taming horses, enjoying a Marlboro – the natives thought it was an anti-smoking ad. To their island mentality, the strongest message sent was, ‘If you smoke cigarettes, you couldn’t possibly do this!’ 


Jerry Seinfeld has a comedy bit – ‘What would happen if aliens came to earth and saw the way humans treat their dogs, following them around, picking up their feces – they’d probably think the dog was in charge!’ 


Life is very much about point of view.  Do psychedelic drugs cause humans to see all humans as brothers and sisters as opposed to a rival, an enemy based on their differences? Is a Jew a human being or some lesser race based on their devious nature, to quote millions and millions of people worldwide? 


Are marijuana smokers criminals that should be incarcerated alongside murderers and rapists? I wonder how many white suburban college students are serving time in jail for possession of marijuana. The number is higher than you think.


The FBI has released its annual report on Crime in the United States 2007. Once again, the number of people in the United States arrested for marijuana has gone up. 872,721 Americans were arrested for marijuana in 2007, and of those arrests, 89% or 775,138 were arrests for simple possession – not buying, selling, trafficking, or manufacture (growing). Furthermore, 3 out of 4 were under age 30; one in four were 18 years old or younger.


Now, a marijuana smoker is arrested at the rate of 1 every 37 seconds and almost 100 marijuana arrests per hour. Nearly one in eight drug prisoners in America are behind bars for marijuana-related offenses, according to data released this week by the US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). The FBI’s tally is the highest marijuana arrest total ever-reported in law enforcement history. If this pace continues, annual arrests for pot will surpass one million per year by 2010.


Nearly 40,000 Americans are presently incarcerated in state and federal correctional facilities for marijuana violations. Of these, 28,650 marijuana offenders are state inmates, and 10,538 are federal prisoners. 


This year, marijuana accounts for 47.4% of all drug arrests. ALMOST HALF OF ALL THE WAR ON DRUGS IS WAGED ON MARIJUANA.


Perhaps most disturbing is comparing marijuana arrests to violent crime. This year, while 775,138 Americans were arrested for mere marijuana possession, only 597,447 people were arrested for all violent crimes combined, which includes murder, non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. 


Thank you Bobby McGee for your research – 


With all the positive effects of cannabis, hemp, marijuana, pot, the chronic, ganja, refer, herb – all different names for the same species of plant – how can anybody put credence in man made laws, especially laws whose original purpose was the marginalization of specific ethnicities? Have Americans learned nothing from the lessons of the past? I heard recently a quote – it sounds like Mark Twain, but I’m not sure who said it, if anyone famous – A society seldom gets the leaders it wants, but it ALWAYS gets the leaders it deserves. It’s really true.

To Be Concluded

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