Just because the culture is moving in a certain direction does not mean that direction is wise. It usually just means that the people behind that direction are more determined than the people who might be inclined to resist it, or that they’ve managed to strike fear in the hearts of all who might oppose them.
Or that the resistance figures it’s no use because they’re going to lose anyway.
This is how it’s been in recent years concerning marijuana. What was once recognized as the evil weed - a dangerous habit likely to lead to addiction and various mental and physical heatlh issues - is now moving quickly to the mainstream. This is not because any of the facts about marijuana have changed. They haven’t. If anything, we now understand it to be even more dangerous than we previously thought.
But the culture and its primary drivers either don’t care about this, don’t believe it or refuse to let the information be heard - because nothing is more important to them than the freedom to get stoned as often as possible. That’s a hell of a priority for your life, but some people are just extremely stupid. Meanwhile, an awful lot of people who take their lead from headlines and/or entertainment have bought the notion that marijuana is “medicine,” and think it’s uncompassionate to oppose it. And of course, as you’ll see from what will probably happen in the comment section below, anyone who speaks the truth about marijuana comes in for so much abuse from stoners that most consider it not worth it.
But Roger Goodell, commissioner of the National Football League and not a favorite of this column, has redeemed himself to a significant degree by yelling stop to the madness. Appearning on ESPN’s Mike & Mike the other day, Goodell made it clear that the NFL has not lost sight of the dangers of pot, and is not about to start allowing its players to use it:
Goodell’s wise stance owes to the fact that he recognizes issues with pot that should be obvious to anyone who stops to think about it for even 10 seconds, provided of course that anyone is actually willing to do so. See for yourself:
Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana. Seven states allow for recreational use, but the NFL still bans its use and disciplines players when random tests show 35 nanograms per milliliter in their system, according to its policy and program on substances of abuse.
Goodell’s comments Friday morning suggest the league has no plans to reconsider that stance.
“I think you still have to look at a lot of aspects of marijuana use,” Goodell said. “Is it something that can be negative to the health of our players?
“Listen, you’re ingesting smoke, so that’s not usually a very positive thing that people would say. It does have addictive nature. There are a lot of compounds in marijuana that may not be healthy for the players long term. All of those things have to be considered.
“And it’s not as simple as someone just wants to feel better after a game. We really want to help our players in that circumstance, but I want to make sure that the negative consequences aren’t something that is going to be something that we’ll be held accountable for some years down the road.”
It’s hilarious in a tragic way that the culture is so down on cigarette smoking - which is a terrible thing to do - but wants to celebrate marijuana, which poses all the same health risks as cigarette smoking plus many more. You’re still ingesting smoke, and a joint has four times as much tar as a cigarette.
It’s also common sense that chemical that alters your mental consciousness is going to have an effect on your brain. This is why the many studies linking pot to psychosis and lower IQ levels among teens should really not be controversial at all. If the clinical studies don’t prove it, the obvious state of mind of those who try to deny it should.
The NFL has had enough problems with thug-type players getting into trouble and causing problems for others. The last thing it needs is to encourage drug use with all of its consequences. And the America as a nation has enough slugging losers sitting around producing little and consuming plenty, and we don’t need more such people.
In my view, Roger Goodell has not been a very good commissioner of the NFL for reasons I could go on about all day. But he is making a sound, responsible decision in refusing to buy the pro-marijuana propaganda. I just hope he can continue to hold out as the pressure inevitably gets stronger. That has not been his strong suit, but I’m not going to carp on the guy for something he might do in the future. Right now he’s taking a responsible position. Kudos to him for that.
Dan Calabrese’s column is distributed by HermanCain.com, which can be found at HermanCain.com
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