As marijuana becomes legalized in more areas around the country, the number of people taking advantage of it is increasing. Yet, there are still many misconceptions and false information being spread.
To clear the air, we have addressed a few of the most common myths about marijuana, replacing them with facts.
MYTH: Legally prohibiting the use of marijuana will reduce users.
Fact: People are going to smoke despite the law. So, legally prohibiting the use of marijuana will not reduce users.
History (and research) has shown us that people will use marijuana anywhere, regardless of whether they are legally able to do so or not. Until recent years, marijuana was prohibited nearly everywhere, yet it did not deter smokers from enjoying their bud.
MYTH: Marijuana use causes an increase in crime rates.
Fact: Since we’re being honest, it is true that marijuana use is statistically higher in those who have committed crimes than those who have not. Yet, that does not mean that marijuana use causes an increase in crime rates.
It’s like the chicken vs. the egg scenario. Maybe offenders just like to smoke pot rather than it being the pot that has caused them to commit a crime.
MYTH: Marijuana is a gateway drug.
Fact: People have been pointing the finger at marijuana for years, blaming it for why kids have used harder drugs. When it comes down to statistics, there is no denying that those who have tried marijuana are more likely to move on to other drugs, too. Does that mean they tried those drugs because they smoked marijuana? No.
There is no link between marijuana and illicit drug use.
MYTH: Marijuana is addictive.
Fact: Marijuana is not addictive.
While someone may become dependent on marijuana to get through their daily routine, there is a big difference between addiction and dependency.
MYTH: Marijuana causes cancer.
Fact: Marijuana smoke contains carcinogens like cigarettes do. This makes it easy to assume that pot smokers have a high risk of lung cancer. Surprisingly, researchers at UCLA concluded that they don’t see any connection at all between the use of marijuana and lung cancer.
Cigarette smokers inhale a lot more tobacco than marijuana users inhale herb. This means they are inhaling much lower amounts of carcinogens. And, according to the study, this is likely why there is no connection between marijuana use and lung cancer.
MYTH: Marijuana is 100% harmless.
Fact: Smoking a lot of anything can be harmful to your body. Marijuana may not be known to cause cancer, but individuals who smoke heavily are susceptible to other illnesses, especially those that impair the respiratory system.
Doing things while under the influence has been known to cause accidents, such as driving a car, but the chances of this happening are relatively low compared to other substances.
MYTH: Marijuana should be classified as a dangerous drug.
Fact: Marijuana is not a dangerous drug — and there have been many studies done to prove it. You cannot put marijuana in the same classification as cocaine or methamphetamines when it has been found to be less dangerous than drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes.
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