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Curtis Dobyns's profile photoDaniel Williams's profile photoBruce Bonham's profile photojohn gury's profile photo
I admire you a great deal for your honesty and your work on this subject. 
They have a point, how can you think you can control drugs in the world when you cant even stop them from getting into high security prisons. 
Prohibition didn't work in the 20s and it ISN'T working now!!
This is why +Richard Branson is a continued Mentor for me since Sir rock :) please do know that this isnt about getting high
Thanks Richard - time to admit the truth - the war on drugs is largely counter productive.
Sir Richard Branson.
Is there a contact details/email whereby we can contact you privately?

Thank you.
More like the war on drugs is a total failure in wasted money and lost lives!
Considering what a disgusting person Morgan Freeman has proven to be, he's the worst choice for a video about "taboos."
Can you imagine a country like the UK stopping the pointless persecution of the simple pot smoking average joe
I personally can't, I do strongly believe the ONLY way this will happen is to dangle large tax incentives to them 
My guess is that Morgan Freeman's problem for Mr. Greene is the color of his skin. I checked his profile, found very little and blocked him because I already have enough nonsense in my life.
You'll have to take the "proven" part of that statement with a grain of salt.
'A war on drugs is a war on people'

Yes, it really, really is...
Richard, that will be the tipping point. So many governments are hurting for money now. Legalizing and regulating and taxing drugs could bring them a windfall. Money will be the thing that breaks up this nonsensical ideology!
Hmmm...big words....not easy when economies run on it
I agree that the war on drugs is a waste, and feel that our treatment of marijuana creates an unnecessary disdain for the law among young people. But it makes me queezey when I try to interject designer drugs, smack and other deadly drugs into the equation. Like state regulated gambling, we put the revenue needle in our arm, and can't pull it out. Not sure that business model worked out. We need a business plan, if revenue is the driver.
I agree, Dave, but we're dealing with politicians who are second only to the business sector when it comes to greed. They will think about dollars and no further.
Let's brake all the taboos!!!
There is a movie out already called Guns and Weed, the road to Freedom. By Michael W. Dean and Neema Vadadi. We do need more of these exposing the complete and utter failure of the war on drugs. I commend Mr. Branson for doing this. 
Well we could grow hemp, stop are demand for oil, replace most fibres with hemp, we could legalize and moderate pot and put THC use mainstream for good proven causes. The pros far outweigh the cons and only a stupid man would continue the rational obvious debate past that point. It is the powers that be flexing yet again in our modern society. It's the reason you can still buy cigarettes and can't buy pot, it's the same reason you can't run your car on water, it's the reason our economy is ran the way it is.

My support comes from people like +Richard Branson that are one of these super powers he is one of them that also supports this ideology. We need more supporters this is a taboo it is a taboo because if it was a genuine 'what works best for us humans' from debate it would of been over a hundred years ago! 
The War on terror is easier to win than the war on drugs. 
Drugs are a worldwide problem because governments continue to punish people on them instead of providing help to get off them. 
+Susana Damy Hmmm...tell us what's on your mind, girl. There won't be a queue, will it?
Morgan Freeman as a narrator, how come nobody thought of that before?
Jay A
+Joseph Greene mate, what did Morgan Freeman do to be a disgusting person? Please tell us. If you can't, just shut up coz youre the one who's disgusting! 
Jay A
Legalize drugs and there wont be gangs and dealers on the streets. Crime rate will go down! hahaha
I have no issue with the war on drugs.. EXCEPT including weed in it... get rid of crack, coke, meth.. but to put weed into that same category is silly
The war on drugs is simply to create jobs.  Everyone knows that it doesn't work.
its true ! drug abuse is becoming more rampant dis days
it is good to save lives,any how it is in our interest to keep what the tradition has given us instead of tobacco and hard drinks.
+Robert Lemond the way to get rid of those "hard" drugs is with education and helping people get off them. Not by locking them away in prison. 
Richard, It is genuinely nice thing to see you coming back into the post with comments on responses to your original post!
Colorado and Washington got it right . . . watch out for the federal government though!
One part of the solution since is considered a problem, is to reject usage of such harming drugs. Every single individual can make a real choice as opposed into having their government make the final choices for them . When harsh drugs are used for entertainment instead for medical reasons , that is when it becomes problematic. In some cases , the outcome is deadly. Therefore rejection of usage would be an ending factor for consumption since drugs have become invasive to the world's economy. Best wishes in your endeavor!
As long as people are gullible and believe what they are told then there will always be problems in our societies. Whether it is the b/s politicians or anyone really in a postion of power to abuse it or it be the person trying a drug "they" are told is okay...if they are gullible then they will have problems in their life. It turn those problems will become our problems.
What has not worked in the past is not going work in the future.
It is time for another strategy.
Guatemala's President Otto Perez Molina echoed Calderon's call and went even further, saying that "the basic premise of our war against drugs has proved to have serious shortcomings."

The speeches, which were a few hours apart, constituted some of the most public challenges to date of anti-drug policies that have been mostly unchanged since the 1970s.

Mexico and Colombia are two of Washington's firmest allies in Latin America and both work closely with U.S. anti-drug efforts. While the subject of legalization was discussed at an Americas-wide summit in Colombia attended by U.S. President Barack Obama earlier this year, raising the once-taboo subject at the 193-nation meeting in New York amounts to an escalation of the debate.

Obama has ruled out any major changes to drug laws, but some U.S. diplomats privately concede that the consensus around Latin America is clearly swinging against the status quo, and that some degree of change is imminent.

Wow, Duh... on this one. Yet they still have to parrot this get tough on drug gangs, law and order above all, which is way more than rhetorical up to the level of all out civil warfare in Mexico.
+Robert Lemond your line of thinking insinuates that there are law abiding citizens that are not on crack/coke/meth simply because it is illegal. The argument that people will suddenly go out and start using meth because it is legal is ridiculous at best. People who want to use drugs, do.
wtf??? i said no such thing.... i believe the war on harder drugs should continue.. i barely consider weed a drug. 
I know you didn't SAY it, that's why I said insinuate. Why is the war on <drug other than weed> any different? Making <drug other than weed> illegal has not stopped people from using it or from it's rampant growth. What possible reason would there be to continue the war on <drug other than weed>? There is no credible evidence that use would go up if it is legalized (see Portugal). In fact, legalization across the board has brought addiction rates down by 50% (this is for hard stuff, not weed).

This of course presumes that legalization is accompanied by an education and treatment program funded by the tax revenue, but I think that is a fair condition of legalization.
+Joseph Greene Please clarify your inflammatory post.  What, precisely, has +Morgan Freeman done that makes him a "disgusting person"?

+Robert Lemond Perhaps we have a label problem.  The "War on Drugs" doesn't sound so bad....perhaps if we all start to call it what it really is, you and other supporters may not be so enthusiastic.  What we should start calling this is the "War on Americans" or the "War on the Impoverished" or the "War on the Ignorant" or the "War on the Mentally Ill"
Call it what you will, we ALL suffer at the hands of a police state, and we've all sacrificed freedoms and prosperity in the name of moral superiority.
'...There wont be room in our jails for all the people....we will make room'....wonder what happened to that idea. Oh yes I forgot, privatisation of the prison system. There is a good reason to keep drugs illegal. More money for prison owners. 
+Robert Lemond The bigger point about things like drug wars is that not only do they not work but they make it WORSE for everyone. Even as hardcore as it gets, like meth. That goes up to ridiculous extremes of absurdity like  having to show id and sign a registry for shitty cold pills. 
Much like our war on terror increases the number of people who have good reasons now to terrorize the US, but different. The war on terror at least does not give them economic incentives to manufacture drugs but of course the war on drugs has traditionally given them ways to finance their terror. Of course the way people like me think about this is we would be better off in social and economic beneficial utility spending by just paying the terrorists, narco gangs, et al.  to do something else that is not so socially deleterious, turning them into docile ward of the state compliant shepple.   
Or is that docile ward of the state compliant sheeple? 
 Very good point +john gury  Just a small example how the war on drugs works: A farmer in Afghanistan often only has the choice between seeing his family starve or growing poppies for the opium and heroin trade. US troops then go to the fields and burn them down, leaving the farmers nothing to support their lives or that of their family. Often these situations are resulting in under age prostitution (since now the daughters have to make the money) or suicide of the farmer. 
Instead of giving options and incentives, this "war" only bears destruction and further fuels the spiral. You might call it self perpetuating.
We live in a society that idolizes drugs. Kids growing up are shown that "Its ok to use, because its fun." Furthermore, society now makes illegal drugs legal for "medicinal use" which roughly translates to "Its perfectly acceptable to use drugs of any kind." Personally it pisses me off when people try to argue saying "you have never seen someone killed over this type of drug." Ummm yes I have and it you can't justify saying certain types "make you a better driver" Its all a double standard plain and simple. 
+Michael Vaughan I don't think that our society idolises drugs. I also don't think that kids learn that it is ok to use drugs because they are fun. Do you think Morphine should be banned from hospitals? Or do you think that using morphine as a pain killer sends the signal that everybody should use heroine?  
And when it comes to kids and drugs in general just consider this: It is easier for a 13 year old student to get a gram of coke than a bottle of beer. 
Why? because no self respecting drug dealer asks for ID. 
So your argumentation is purely emotional with no rational point to it. 
War is more important than personal identity
 or peace. This war will never end. It's to die for. 
Wonder how many politicians have there hands in the pharmaceutical industry they hand out dangerous pills with insane side affects but a grown person can't smoke a joint in the privacy of their own home but Dr. can hand out pills like a penny gumball machine 
+Nils Rehmann Ok so your perfectly fine with children smoking dope and shooting heroin? Your telling me that kids don't do drugs because its fun?! And at what point did I say morphine should be banned from hospitals? I bet your one of those guys who believes pot should be legal too aren't you? 
Every stupid law damages the law. I realized in the 7th grade that classifying Marijuana as a  schedule 1 narcotic was utterly ridiculous.  

Dick Cavett had a panel of MDs on TV discussing why Cocaine would make a fine recreational drug. I didn't buy that one - not in the 7th grade and not to the present day.

The social and legal ramifications of making Marijuana illegal are well understood and have been discussed nigh-unto-death for decades. It's time to move on. Break the taboo.

Every stupid law damages the law.
Bastard ! Dirty rascal ! Piss off ! 
+Michael Vaughan Not sure I follow that logic of legitimate medical drug use of the 'illegal drug' Cannabis for conditions like Glaucoma, chemotherapy nausea, and more to translate into  "Its perfectly acceptable to use drugs of any kind."  No. What it does translate into is that it is perfectly acceptable to use Cannabis. The fact that it is illegal and we put people in prison and shatter homes, literally, to enforce the ridiculously stupid law is the much bigger crime than the act itself and all the consequences of using it. Plus, I don't care what kids growing up are shown as perfectly acceptable other then I think they would be better off watching the collected films of Cheech & Chong rather than all this scociopathic glorified fucking violence.  
In britain the classification for possesion of cannabis is the same as possesion of amphetamine 
James Hamilton is stupid, the people are more important than anything. without the people then there wont be and sort of peace.
when in elections year, the politicians are the ones that make more money from drugs, they get their money under the counter to keep the laws the way they are till the next elections when they get more money to keep it going illegal, and the next $, and the next $ $$$ 
The only reason cannabis is illegal in britain is becsuse the pharmacies would go bustu
+john gury what I'm saying is if you're telling people that is perfectly legal to use this illegal drug then you're also telling them that is perfectly legal to use all other drugs. 
+Nils Rehmann  I have a family friend who is one of the guys who buys pharmaceutical commodities for Merck from groups like  Tasmanian Alkaloids Ltd., one of  the world's major agri-biz poppy grower co-ops.  He liked my capitalist pig solution for Afghanistan which  would have the Taliban become Merck employee contractors and become financially independent legitimate businessmen while cutting off the drug trade and lowering the cost of much needed pharmaceutical inputs for aging western society. 
Well Colorado and Washington State have legalized pot for recreational use which seems to be a step in the right direction. The supreme court already stated when it ruled in favor of Medical use that federal can only govern commercial\manufacturing of pot which means that you have to grow it yourself and not to much to make the federal government think you are manufacturing it. So we can look at the federal level of change to make profit or business from drugs but I think we are at a point at a state level to say with popular state vote if a drug is acceptable. I think this is a bottom up issue right now. It's not the powerful few in government making drugs illegal it is general public that will not legalize it.
Anyone in Colorado or Washington know how things are going right now. Are people using? What are the rules? FYI I don't use any illegal drugs myself. I just think it's important to stop wasting money on fighting against minor drugs like pot. What a waste of money.
+Michael Vaughan From your statement above then, you are against ALL drugs, OTC, prescription, homeopathic, recreational, everything?

You do realize, if that dream somehow came to pass, millions and millions of people would die in minutes, hours, and do realize that?

The "legal" status of a thing does not define the usefulness of a thing.
+Mike Littrell I'm not your brother and if I was I would have kicked in your teeth long ago for starting shit with me. 
Isn't +Richard Branson an official knighted sir? Which means you have to be in a different category than a Richard Dawkins, for example, with militant atheism being a disqualification for getting the ok from that class of defenders of the faith. So, they are ok with some weed smoking but presumably  things like outspoken atheism, child molesting, and so forth are not acceptable for getting knighted. 
+Curtis Dobyns You do understand that the Big Business Pharma set up people to die from stopping the use of drugs.  Metformin, for example, is a drug used by diabetics to control blood sugar.  Prolonged use to that drug will make your condition permanent.  Eventually blocking the body's ability to convert the sugar into energy.  We are dying because of the way we eat.  Do your research.  There are plenty of natural ways through diet alone that can help reverse and combat the illnesses of today.  The Powers that be are continuously pushing the envelope of things to be tolerated.  Just another way to put money in their pockets.  Legalize this.. then what next?  In the end to each his/her own.  We are just stating our opinions and in the end.. agree to disagree.  Just stand for something you believe.  
+Rachel Robert I realize there's a cost to just about every action ever taken.
But what precisely are you advocating?  
"Natural ways" and modern medicine are not mutually exclusive, and many "Big Business Pharma" products come directly from nature, or are derived/synthesized to mimic nature.
+Curtis Dobyns no what I'm saying is that we've grown up being told not to do illegal drugs. Then all of a sudden these illegal drugs are legalized. So my point is you can't tell kids to not do drugs then all of a sudden say its Ok just don't do these types of illegal drugs 
I only clicked the 'play' button because it said "narrated by Morgan Freeman"...
+Michael Vaughan You can't tell kids not to do drugs.  Period.
"Just say NO" is one of the worst failures in the history of failures.  Turns out lying to children only makes them distrustful.  Turns out kids are pretty smart, and what worse, curious.
All of a sudden isn't a valid argument against change of any sort.

So, what's your solution then?
I'd listen to the phone book if it was narrated by Morgan...
Cool, my dad would find this interesting.
What is the absurd  Bill O'Reilly from Fox news argument against pot? I think it is a rehash of the old gateway drug bs combined with a "it is so much stronger than when I was smoking it" irrationale. 
More government control, less freedom. If someone wants to get high at home and not bother anyone who cares. 
+Michael Vaughan do you think that we never get new insights into anything? We were once told that DDT is good for when we find out that it is terribly dangerous we have to keep using it because we were once told it was good?
Or are you just annoyed that you spend your youth staying away from drugs and now think your youth could have been more fun? Whatever your reasoning, I really think that keeping an open mind to our general perception of the universe and everything  is essential to bring this society forward. So what if we once told people to stay away from drugs (while simultaneously creating a huge Pharma industry around drugs and getting millions of people addicted to oxycontin & Co.)? Can we not change our standpoint in light of new evidence?
+Mike Littrell how about you go fuck yourself. I could give a godamn about your hippie views for "propot" and the more you keep calling me bro the more I want to beat the fuck out of you and you know I'll do it too bitch.
In Soviet Holland you don't have to show an ID when purchasing drugs from an illegal dealer, however, if you buy them at an official selling point you have to identify yourself. Legalization means you are more able to control who hasn't access to dope.

Btw: Americans are twice as likely to smoke pot than the Dutch. Maybe it's true that the forbidden fruits taste better.
+Mike Littrell Well I do think harder drugs should not be legalized. Pot is not a hard drug in my opinion. I think a survey needs to see if people think alcohol or marijuana is worse. I think alcohol is wayyy worse than marijuana myself even though I don't use marijuana. Alcohol can lead to violence. Pot does not really do that.
So hard drugs to me have a lot more problems being legal. Drug lords will make the USA their home to sell to other countries. This will create problems and violence just like trying to keep it illegal.  Also, I do think legalizing drugs will make it more likely for kids to use it. Back when I was in high school I would just get someone older to buy it for me from the store. Not saying it is right to buy for minors but it happens none the less.
We should move toward a more libertarian society, and that also means a move away from central planning socialism.  Don't give into the war on 'class' in America either.  :)
+Michael Vaughan  How about a chain link fence death match which you agree to put on youtube. I know duels are out of fashion and outlawed but then so is  pot smoking along with assault and battery. Only one really hard rule, no hate speech! We will have to citizen arrest anyone who does that on the spot or just have vigilante justice right there. 
+Mike Littrell or I could just laugh about how you look like you just spent the past hour sucking someone else's dick. I mean if you look like a bitch and sounds like a bitch you probably are
Hi Richy Rich, you're so right. I don't' use it and this world never learns or probably those ruling this world don't want for us to learn.
+Mike Littrell unfortunately I do worry about that. It is people like this that enable our goverments to run the show the way they do. Whether dumb or not, without changing the mind of such people, change will come slow, if at all. I have been hoping for the "old" generation to die out for some time, until I realised that their forces are replenished every day. 
There are too many people with an interest in keeping recreation drugs illegal. DEA, the gangsters making money off illegal drugs, etc. Drugs did not become illegal until Prohibition was repealed. The Feds that were responsible for the enforcement of Prohibition got pot, heroin, and cocaine outlawed, I am sure with the help of the gangsters that were rich from selling illegal booze. Then of course  there are the freedom loving people that are believe in freedom unless it might be a sin.
+Mike Littrell after reading Michael's last posts, I must agree....oooh and I promised myself not to talk down on anyone. +Michael Vaughan you leave me no choice. Yes you are not of the most intelligent persuasion. 
I think legalizing to a certain extent is a good idea. Marijuana has plenty of viable medical uses and has never been linked to any deaths that I know of. I would bet that the legal status of cannabis leads to funding Mexican drug cartels. A lot of the harder stuff like heroine and meth and the like should stay the way they are, but maybe decriminalizing them would be the better idea. A lot of people are afraid of getting help, because they could get arrested.

Also, it seems the illegality of pot is the gateway. If one had to go to a gas station for it the chances of coming in contact with a coke, or meth dealer would go down. Plus it's a lot harder to get beer as a child than marijuana since dealers don't card. Why should we spend so much on keeping pot smokers locked up anyway? Last I checked it was somewhere around $60 a day to house an inmate and that seems wasted over a non-violent crime like that.
+Mike Littrell  "Retarded" in non pc hate speech now. Homophobic is acceptable. We can still say and write all forms of fuck too.
So you should have written "so you're homophobic and a fucking idiot?"  or perhaps "so you're homophobic and a fucking special needs person, special in that you need to grow a brain?"  
+Mike Littrell Kudos for endulging into Biochem and more for the cause. Always appreciate finding a fellow warrior. 
I wish more people would set their emotions aside when it comes to important topics such as the war on drugs or politics in general for that matter and get informed on their own accord (that does NOT mean FOX news that is not information, maybe entertainment, but not information).
Why the hell doesn't Sir +Richard Branson weigh in on his own fucking posting? How about some law and goddamn order around here. 
+john gury I think that might be asking a bit much from the man. He is busy with other stuff I imagine.
+Asad Bhatti not only the CIA. Look at Pfizer, SheringPlough, Merck, Bayer, name a few. 
The original Marijuana law (s) were created to stop the use of sailors burning mooring ropes on ships. But lawmakers kept the laws as a means of creating income security, even though ropes were made with treated hemp that stopped the problem. Like so many other laws thad were created to control an income, many lives have been altered, as well as lost due to the humilation of a society saying ' you have done a bad thing, so you must be punished.' The legal system would have so much to lose, lawyers, judges, parole officers,etal. Jail space would cause closing some prisons instead of building more, lessing the need to increase taxes for housing all those "criminals."
Excccuuuzzzz meee! Think it's time for a revisit to "Reefer Madness" to remind myself how insanity runs amok. Jus saying....
+Mike Littrell +Nils Rehmann I do find it hilarious that people like you actually justify our country going to shit by both agreeing that we should allow drugs to be part of our society. 
+Mike Littrell That reminds me, there is the great: 'Pot smoking makes our children stupid, like  the retarded,. and they are already challenged enough to learn anything then fall more easily into gangs, lives of crime,  become easy targets for child molesters, perverts and much more likely to sell their tender young bodies for the money that drug addiction requires' ....argument. 
Drugs ARE part of our society, and they always have been.  The only thing that has changed is perception.
Drugs already is apart of our society. People fake certain mental illness to legally receive drugs which makes it more difficult for true sufferers of mental illness to get the drugs they need. The problem you speak of is already here Michael Vaughan.
+Mike Littrell ive stated my facts multiple times here. If your to stupid to read what I've written then my concept of people like you is completely valid. Aren't you late to the phish show 
Hey I was showing you another perspective if you want to bad mouth me that only shows your ignorance and arrogance.
+Michael Vaughan no, I am not justifying your (not in the states myself) country going to shit by agreeing that we should allow all drugs. That is absurd. Legalisation of all drugs would not miraculously cure all ills of the country (I guess you mean the states). I never said that. 
But as far as the country (any country) is concerned, here is a small calculation.
Imagine the amount of money you could take in through taxes. A tax of 2 dollars a gram of cannabis is realistic. I don't know how many tons of Cannabis are consumed in the US every year. In Canada 16-17% of people use Cannabis on a recreational basis. So with a population of 35Mio people that is around 5 million people. If they all smoke even 1 gram a week that would be over $100 per person per year. Multiplied by 5 there is half a billion dollars. 
Then add up all the law enforcement cost that are spent on Cannabis prosecution. that should include, cops salaries, cars, helicopters, judges, lawyers, DAs, court bailors, prison costs (in Canada one inmate costs the state $104,000 per year). 
Then you consider the health effects of cannabis to add up the cost to the health system (although this is really unnecessary, because people that want to smoke pot do it anyway, regardless of legal status). 
So you tell me, will it put the country in shit, or not?
Leave emotions out please, I do as well. Think and rebuttle.
I understand the point you make but consider that not all will accept it.
+Richard Meen More than perception is changing. The drugs themselves are in fact changing faster than any perceptions, becoming  more potent, ubiquitous, and, some would say, interesting. In the case of something like pot which was not even considered a drug for most of human history, The perception changed to one of the more bizarre and politically savage persecutions over nothing in modern history. Which is what guys like me wind up controlling vis-a-vis  what gets written as history - which helps somewhat when it is the truth. 
+Mike Littrell or what bitch? Lol look whose getting mad now.
Your telling me that its not logical that we legalize marijuana and then say don't do drugs kids? 
Fair point.  Really, I guess all that I was saying was that drugs in one form or another have always been there (especially things like opium and cannabis), and thinking about them as this modern era-specific issue is...well, just silly.
+Nils Rehmann are you REALLY trying to justify illegal drugs by saying they will make a profit??!!! This is EXACTLY why society is going to shit
+Mike Littrell whose the disease now lolol get mad bitch I like it when your angry, makes my job more fun to watch you laugh while you stumble on your words
I do not think that is quite what people are saying. Check out this factoid: During the 80's I had only three customers ... all law school fraternities.
+Richard Meen The modern era specific issues about substances like opium and cannabis were formed in the US under the control of fascists and racial hysterics more than any rational judgements about them that is for sure. On the other side of the pond, in the lands of the Sir Richards, the history of opium is fascinating in that regard especially as it gets so deeply intertwined with ye jolly olde British imperial criminals  from India to China and beyond. 
Incapable of heightened discourse so he resorts to calling people "bitches", thinking he has somehow scored a point against intelligent people speaking with those strange things called...oh what's that word?... oh yeah.  Facts.  THAT is what is wrong with society.
So I just spent 30 minutes reading every comment on this post and I want to chime in (although not sure why) (or that I have a point). But I'm 31 and grew up in a non using household and just say no era.. I tried it once in high school, got sick, and never touched it again. I don't know how I feel about the possibility of legalization.. 
John Gury, yes, you're right.  Fascinating.  :)
+Richard Branson How are you prepared for the almost certain defamatory comments/Attitudes you will recieve. If you don't want to answer for your own reasons may I ask, are you prepared? 
+Mike Littrell you spend to much time watching YouTube. You should go outside and get out of your parents house
Does having a bad personal experience give you the right to dictate the behaviours of the rest of the populace?  It didn't work for you, great.  That's perfectly reasonable.  But your neighbour has the right to make the choice for him or herself.
You spend too much time attacking people instead of listening and discussing.
+Richard Meen  I really like that compare and contrast of the drug wars in the recent past vs. the drug wars of today. Hard to say which was more morally bankrupt and indefensible on any standard of basic human rights and legal values. 
+Josh Welborn it can be addictive but not chemically addictive. It's basic human nature, it's good so I wish to repeat the event. 
There is (as far as I am aware) only one adverse health effect to date that is attributed to THC. There has been sufficient scientific data that consumption of THC at a young age (under the age of 15-16) can significantly increase the risk of schizophrenia in people that are predispositioned to the condition. Then again, nobody is proposing to make cannabis available to children. 
+Josh Welborn many many smokers are long time users so as a fellow smoker it would be daft to exclude the very valid point of addiction 
Drugs are for mugs, mugs are for tea . . Tea is for me
Lol we all love weed! Just wish the wife would blaze it
+Richard Branson you just rock! Maybe sponsor a Rock the Ark concert for London. Poor taste. I actually am flying to Heathrow tomorrow so I shouldn't joke. Also my family got hit by #Sandy and we were without power for 8 days and nights, sorry for the pun. Your cool, just jealous, and the family is in the states and I am overseas, bummed.
Yea, if everyone in the world was a pot head, there would be no war. Only pot heads.
Back shortly away to spike the misses :-)
+Michael Vaughan first of all, I NEVER said that it is OK for kids to do drugs...don't know where you got that from. Second of all I also did not say that we should legalise drugs for financial reasons....I will try to make this a simple to understand post for your sake.

Do you drink alcohol?  Do you think kids should drink alcohol? Do you think alcohol is dangerous? Do you think it should be legal?

I think if you answer these questions for yourself, then you will see my point clearly. If you still don't see where I am coming from then please tell me why you think that we should keep all the drugs illegal. Tell me why you think that the war on drugs is right, or what you think should be done. So far you haven't really alluded to that. 
I think you need to ask how much the government spends on Cancer treatment as a result of people smoking and the likely cost of long term mental illness caused by taking cannabis, maybe you should put your effort into stopping smoking rather than legalising weed.
As long as tobacco is legal, I cannot understand anything else being outlawed.  I don't personally drink or use drugs, but I have zero problem with other grown ups making that choice for themselves.  Telling someone they can't use a naturally occurring substance just seems silly.
I'd like to add that even the original post here is somewhat misleading.
Smoking cannabis is only one way to achieve the desired effect.  But, there are risks associated with smoking, so it raises a whole separate issue.  Also, history proves that people are often rude and inconsiderate about 'sharing' their smoke, which is not cool, particularly with a psychoactive smoke.
But smoking is probably not the most intelligent or safest method of ingestion.

I realize that the joint in the image is iconic, but just want to mitigate one of the arguments against this plant.
no puedo cambiar nunca. eso es normal pero nosotros tiene que quedar sieampre tiene qedar lejos lejos mas lejos............
Damon Barth, thank you for being a reasonable and wise human being.
I agree, break the taboo and you break the dealers simple!!!
Only if age restrictions will apply.then legalise it
Mike Littrell, you are a top man and may the world go well with you.Cheers from UK.
I blame spoons and forks for enabling people to get fat. Let's ban those!
I m very busy I will talk to u laterms today
+Richard Branson Something to keep in mind as we walk towards the future with good intent, Americas war on Alcohol failed (see Prohibition), the drug war failed, the sham war on terror is failing/has failed, and the whole reason I believe is that man does not have all the answers to all of societies problems. I encourage you to research how Alcohol was banned successfully, harmful drug use prohibited, monetary system stabilised, and much more in the Islamic Society under the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). History should be studied and its lessons learned and adopted otherwise we will keep making the mistakes our ancestors did. In the interest of research and betterment of human society, there is no harm in studying how the Muslims under Muhammad (PBUH) dealt with these societal issues. I encourage all the readers to take the time to study this.
please Namibian goverment consider pay pipo for what they ar doing this no way tht we muz jus be waitng fo unfosil promise while you ar not doing anythng feed ur pipo atlst wth wht is thr.
please Namibian goverment consider pay pipo for what they ar doing this no way tht we muz jus be waitng fo unfosil promise while you ar not doing anythng feed ur pipo atlst wth wht is thr.
If you are using a computer, please don't use Textlang, we are'nt using Ipods, or texting
Some much lost in the battle to get a quick fix solution, it still come out the ground. How can we stop what mother national give us to used.
I just spoke to a friend of mine and he tells me the local prison has 140 inmates out of 760 odd on alternative prescribed drugs like methadone and subutex.
Fancy that!
Guess where smoking cannabis leads to and what it will do to crime rates and our prison service!
+Farhan Khan I can see how it may look otherwise from the outside, and we still have a long journey ahead of us, but we Americans prefer diversity over an homogeneousness.
Also, we enjoy freedom from religion right along with our freedom of religion, it's our foundation.
And this post is in support of liberty.
+Alex Hunt you are full of it ive smoked weed for years and not got one charge never mind spending time in h.m.p barlinnie
Morgan Freedman est l'un de mes favoris acteur donc on verra le 7decembre s'il est aussi bon. 
+Alex Hunt What is your agenda? "spoke to a friend" is your argument?
Smoking cannabis leads to methadone addiction in prison?

OK, granted, there are people in prison over a plant, but that's what this post is aiming to change.

But if your comment is an attempt to play the the "gateway drug" card, let me tell you the only part of the gateway argument that has validity.
Because marijuana is prohibited, anyone seeking to purchase marijuana is forced to seek a person that is willing to trade in contraband, and that same trader may also trade in other forms of contraband.  So, perhaps because it is illegal, marijuana leads to access to other illegal products.

Of course, it's quite likely that heroin addicts would also smoke weed given the chance, but they're also more likely to steal from their mothers to finance a habit that, if legal, would cost next to nothing.

But the encouraging part of the gateway argument is that the solution is simple.  Provide legal access and exposure to criminal vendors vaporizes.
If marijuana was legal,I guess the cartels would have to resort to smuggling TWINKIES.

As a retired Police Officer, I agree that drugs should not be illegal, they should have the same ramifications as alcohol.  If a person is under the influence operating a vehicle the penalty should be the same, if they are high at work, they can be fired or suspended.  We are spending too much money on the impossible task of controlling that which cannot be controlled, and too many lives are lost both by druggies and law enforcement officers.  Think of the robberies and burglaries that will not occur if the people who want drugs can obtain them legitimately.
I strongly agree with you Thomas.
Michael "Crazy" Vaughan.
+Mike Littrell Cannabis is in the class 1 of drugs in the federal court. Heroin and cocaine are class 2 drugs. Marijuana is controlled by the federal law statues, murder and felony robbery are controlled at the state level. Check the facts, might try going to for more info, and while your there look at the petitions. Word to the wise, know the consequences of signing a petition before doing so.
+Bruce Bonham In the US we don't use Class, we have Schedules.  Schedule I is prohibited, and all the drugs you mentioned are currently in that class.  There are similar substances that also in a more permissive Schedule so that may be used in medicine by prescription.

See correction by +Mike Littrell and my acknowledgement below.
Today I learned Cocaine is more acceptable than marijuana!  Who knew?!  Thanks +Mike Littrell 
There it is right there, Schedule II, Cocaine....also Amphetamine, so presumably, that covers Meth as well.

I can assure anyone without personal experience, you want potheads in your neighborhood and at your holiday party, you do NOT want cokeheads or speed freaks anywhere in your zip code.  In fact, you want potheads over alcoholics, every time.
And... as it happened in the 20s, state's legalized alcohol and the rest followed as it became an election issue 4 years later. In this case, let's hope history repeats itself. We need to keep the momentum started by Colorado and Washington State.
+Mike Littrell your psychobabble makes me laugh. I love how you and your ilk are the defamation of our society and yet people like you are still allowed to vote. People like you are the degradation of our society.
The few existing human Antarcticans are too smart to fight a war.
It amazes me that I am the ONLY person in this thread who believes drugs like pot heroin and coke should be illegal, and yet I get mocked. You can make all the excuses for why drugs should be legalized or regulated but the fact of the matter is they all fucking kill and yet the majority of you say this is ok and the worst part is you find it acceptable. You don't think your saying it should be legalized or regulated then you need to reread this thread. 
+Michael Vaughan We enjoy dangerous activities every day.  For some it's way of life.  I've had a driver's license since the day I turned 16 for example.  I plug in my own appliances.  I walked  across a parking lot at the grocery store.
Because a thing is dangerous does not make it wrong.  And this post is primarily focused on marijuana, and I think you're going to have a tough time supporting your "they all fuckin kill" stance in regards to marijuana.  Driving, or surfing, or performing surgery are all activities best and safest when sober, certainly.  But we allow children to surf and even become pilots.  But we should not continue to provide easy access to drugs of any kind.

The main point is Michael, what we've been doing, forever, hasn't made any difference at all.  You can get whatever drug you want in your state, probably in your town.  I know I can.

It's time to make new mistakes and try something that isn't as militant as the current system.
+Mike Littrell I appreciate the hospitality, but it's been many years, and I suffer from chronic unemployment, and the cure most likely will involve pre-employment drug screening, a whole 'nother topic, but one that I hope progress resolves.
Thanks anyway Mike!
All harmful drugs are bad, but the argument is about whether illegalising them is the best way to combat their misuse. Mockery is not the way to make arguments, your point is fair: you're intertwining legalisation and regulation a bit, though. Legalisation might help regulation and control of the most harmful ones. I'm anti-drugs but pro-legalisation.
+Curtis Dobyns "because a thing is dangerous does not make it wrong." Really now? So trying to pet a rattlesnake isn't wrong, or better yet trying to pet a grizzly bear cub isn't wrong? Are you serious?! So your telling me marijuana doesn't kill when someone gets absolutely stoned and tries to drive a motorcycle only to run a red light and kill themselves. I bet your going to try taking the "they shouldn't have been driving then" stance. 
And secondly +Curtis Dobyns don't you think there's a link to your "chronic unemployment" and screening for drugs? I'm not being an asshole here but its hard for me to take your opinions respectfully with that status. However that motherfucker Mike Litrell I better not ever catch him outside. 
+Michael Vaughan I've anticipated and addressed everything you just mentioned.
I'm perfectly sober, clean, if you prefer.  Also, I am in no way responsible for the current state of the economy.  However, I am solely responsible for my actions.  I do not expect you, the government, nor anyone else to take responsibility for the actions I take.  And that's what I expect from others, or rather, what I'd prefer to be free to expect.

As for your rage and empty threats, it seems to me maybe you're not the one that should be throwing stones here.
Aas far as addressing every comment Ive meantioned your wrong youve only managed to beat around the bush to strengthen your argument. I cant believe you think telling kids no to drugs is ineffective. You must have never been a kid. Its only when we get to a certain age in life when we start exploring other drugs and usually its because others are doing it (at a party, etc) because we want to fit in and "have fun". Personally all of the druggies ive ever met were a degradation to society and a disgrace to their families and yet you still think that one drug (pot) is far less then that of (coke). Why? Because its not classified in the same category? Or because the drug reactions are different? Or better yet because "you hardly ever hear about a pot head killing a family of five" If its any of these meantioned then your making the exact same argument that everyone else has for years and your lacking a legitimate argument. 

+Curtis Dobyns the best part about "throwing stones" is that  if your able to throw a heavy enough stone itll break someone and trust me my threats arent ever empty.
i support to the fullest i would love to smoke some weed on occasion and not get looked down upon its not like id quit my job and be a complete pos and suck some dick for it i just want to get high a lil and support our food industry
+Michael Vaughan I've tried to be respectful to you and take you seriously, but you're just a very small person and I feel sorry for you.  I'm trying very hard not to laugh at you, but it's just too easy.  You're like a clown only smaller and not as scary.  And I bet everyone laughs at you...which should be sad, but it's even funnier.  Poor little Michael....
Threats, either passive or active, do not achieve anything. Excuse me for saying "class" instead of "schedule" of drugs. I do not, have not said I approve of meth, cocaine, heroin, synthetic drugs, or any substance. You dear +Michael Vaughan are putting words in there, not mine, but yours. This whole thread was/is about the legality of cannabis, how the other things appeared, I personally feel you introduced and have contributed the arguments about other drugs. As for the parts where you have inferred that all people that use pot are losers, I beg of you to consider that there are very productive people that use it instead of alcohol. Because of prescription medications, I almost lost my life a year ago to them. Without abusing them, they had accumulated in my system to the point of shutting down my kidneys and destroying a part of my liver. Legal medications that were supposed to be helping me. I know of more people that have lost their lives thru death, or productivity from alcohol then pot. There are probably people in your life that use cannabis, they just don't let you know it because of your attitude. You probably are racist, homophobic, narcissistic, with a shoot first then ask questions mentality, but thats okay because we are supposed to be a tolerant society. Wish you the best in life.
+Michael Vaughan So, you think you suck as a parent and don't believe you can teach your kids to stay off drugs? And, if they disobey you, you want them sent to prison. What a nice person you are... /s
bill is right, also if drugs were not dealt with by the law in such a manner, then there would be less violence among its users, drugs are terrible! but lets solve cancer before trying to stop people doing what they want!
Rich, I do believe the issue with Morgan Freeman is a moral one relating to his affair with the young step daughter he helped raise. 
Thanks for being openly intelligent, lol; We have a pot addiction.. It is illegal.. We buy it from Mexico..This is the Cartels cash crop (they couldnt afford to ship heavier drugs without it)..they corrupt and destroy the Mexican economy..Mexicans flee north for a safer and more prosperous future.. Then we complain about them coming here "illegally" and treat them like criminals while blaming them for OUR weakened economy.
If you want to fight the war on drug cartels, grow your own weed.
People think if drugs are legal then the black market will collapse. It won't unless the price Is right. cigarettes are legal but due to their price In the UK people sell black market cigarettes. So the answer of legalise drugs and tax them has to be balanced right or you will still have a criminal element making money from it 
+Curtis Dobyns so patronizing me is being "respectful"? how about you stop running away from my questions already and answer them? Oh thats right...because ive figured out every argument that a pothead could come up with. Thanks for playing 
+Bruce Bonham my point was that you CANT categorize pot and meth and coke as being all separate drugs. They are all illegal for a reason and should stay that way. So its hypocritical to say this drug (pot) is better then that drug (meth). One is NOT better then the other therefore NONE should be legalized. My anger stems from Mike Littrells mocking of me. I dont take lightly to ANYONE disrespecting me anymore especially when Im in a public forum trying to state what I feel strongly about. Then the constant mockery just added "fuel to the fire". Yes I am racist, yes I am narcissistic but EVERYONE is, and to think otherwise is an outright lie. The difference between me and society is that, I admit my wrongdoings. 
+Greg Mcguire , you are correct, there will be minor growers selling premium grade or underpriced product illegally (much like the moonshiners here in America). But they would not be able to develop into an organized criminal enterprise.
The reason the cartels can ship heroin, coca and can afford to set up abundant meth labs is entirely due to their marajuana profits. You see, without the enormous profits generated by the easy-to-grow-anywhere plant (two cartel growers could turn a $10k investment into $1.5mil in four months, so imagine if you set up thousands), the cost of shipping and replacing what the Feds sieze becomes too high. Not even a local gang could turn a worthy profit.

So +Michael Vaughan you would criminalize aspirin, prescription drugs of ALL kinds, caffiene, nicotine and even your own natural adrenaline? (Yes there are adrenaline junkies and yes many have died trying to get high from it. Think hard before you respond.) Of course not.

I can then only assume that youve never tried either or of the drugs to which you were reffering. This also seems to be an issue among politicians: a lack of life experience, especially in regards to the policies they approve. I however have much experience in life, especially with this topic. Ive tried MANY drugs, none Im proud of. But I am proud that I have made it through all of them clean, capable and I have never had to poo a kidney.

As I said, Im not proud of or would recommend any of the drugs Ive taken over the years, but It does make me MUCH more knowledgeable than you in this field. And I can say with confidence that you have very little idea as to the things of which you speak: Ive seen what happens to people after a lifetime of coke and after a lifetime of pot...well, lets just say I can show you an iron worker with two boys and a beautiful wife and home, and the other we'll just call a 'broken home whose breadwinner overdosed seven months ago'. You take a guess who's on what. (Lets pretend you didnt even compare meth and heroin there;)

Also, I could argue for legalization to Congress; you arent prepared for any such thing, let alone some "stoner".
This is pure gold (comments I mean)...cannabis and poppy products have been traditionally used in India (widely in Hindu culture) and chewing of cocoa leaves has been practiced in S.A. too, since ancient times.
These were a part of our culture and will continue remain, positively or negetively!
+frank mcneil no dont be delirious and to answer your question im not saying to get rid of drugs that are activly distributed in hospitals by a board certified doctor. 

Yes Ive tried pot and coke and im not saying everyone cant get away from it, im saying when those of us were ON the drug we were degradation and a disgrace to our families. 
+Michael Vaughan "Yes I am racist, yes I am narcissistic but EVERYONE is, and to think otherwise is an outright lie."

You disgrace your family regardless of your participation with drugs.  You are what's wrong with America, and you bring shame to me and the rest of us.

You are free to spew your hate and ignorance all you want, but when you bring it out of the hovel you call home and air your filth in public, you're going to take some heat for it.
You disgust me.

Crawl back in your hole Michael, no one is afraid of you.  Well, maybe small children...
+Curtis Dobyns you cant tell me you have never told a racist joke and laughed. NOR can you tell me youve never had racist thoughts run through your head and your making ME out to be the martyr? Please dont spit out your filth without first evaluating your life. What a hypocrite. And yes I know I disgraced my family with drugs thats why I dont do that dumb shit anymore. 

Maybe small children are scared of me huh? That must explain why your angry at me because your scared. Now run away little boy its past your bedtime let the grownups talk.
Yes legalise with education and addiction cases will come down. The big question is why people do drugs ? What is missing in your life that you need to be numb and escape reality ? Life with all its joy, happiness, love, pain, heart ache and sadness is best served sober. It is more real and meaningful. All the best to you. :) 
some just enjoy life much more without the sharp edges. it's just a matter of choice. PERSONAL choice not societies choice
+Michael Vaughan I am just reading my way through the article, and also through the cited literature (which will take a while). So far for now:

'Legalized gambling has not reduced illegal gambling in the United States; rather, it has increased it. This is particularly evident in sports gambling, most of which is illegal. Legal gambling is taxed and regulated and illegal gambling is not. Legal gambling sets the stage for illegal gambling just the way legal marijuana would set the stage for illegal marijuana trafficking.'

I think this comparison is absolute bogus. Gambling and marihuana are two totally different things. Illegal gambling is more lucrative than legal gambling, therefore, illegal activities exist still. Cannabis can be compared with alcohol and since the prohibition is gone, the number of bootleggers has gone to....well zero. So stating that the legalisation of Cannabis will set a stage for illegal trafficking is nonsense. 


'Marijuana is currently the leading cause of substance dependence other than alcohol in the U.S. In 2008, marijuana use accounted for 4.2 million of the 7 million people aged 12 or older classified with dependence on or abuse of an illicit drug. This means that about two thirds of Americans suffering from any substance use disorder are suffering from marijuana abuse or marijuana dependence'

It is scientifically proven that Cannabis is not addictive. The problem is that in state side literature the any user of Cannabis is a dependant. These are terminology problems that distract from the facts. I know a lot of users of Cannabis and non of them is dependant. In fact I don't know anyone who is addicted (although I admit, these people must exist, just as there is people that are addicted to chocolate).


'If the U.S. were to legalize marijuana, the number of marijuana users would increase. Today there are 15.2 million current marijuana users in comparison to 129 million alcohol users and 70.9 million tobacco users. Though the number of marijuana users might not quickly climb to the current numbers for alcohol and tobacco, if marijuana was legalized, the increase in users would be both large and rapid with subsequent increases in addiction.'

Aah yes, the "if it is legalised everybody would be high all the time" argument. 
This argument is pure propaganda. As seen in countries such as Portugal or Spain, the number of users was not affected by legalisation. Not sure about you, but I would not start using heroine or Cocaine if they become legal....


'The costs of legalizing marijuana would not only be financial. New marijuana users would not be limited to adults if marijuana were legalized, just as regulations on alcohol and tobacco do not prevent use by youth. Rapidly accumulating new research shows that marijuana use is associated with increases in a range of serious mental and physical problems. Lack of public understanding on this relationship is undermining prevention efforts and adversely affecting the nation’s youth and their families.'

So this paragraph is funny. Beforehand the authors list the cost to the health system of alcohol and weigh it against the tax income. To be honest this is actually correct as far as alcohol or cigarettes are concerned. However, no physical adverse effects have been connected to THC (not a carcinogen for example). Although I agree that smoking is always a health threat but THC can be consumed in less harmful ways. 
However, the authors make no connection of Cannabis to health impacts, rather they just ASSUME that Cannabis is the same as alcohol and tobacco...which is ludicrous since not even alcohol and tobacco are directly comparable. All it takes to see that is our societies reaction towards smokers and people that consume alcohol. Haven't seen many people that would forbid their friends to drink a beer at their place. Smoking is a different story. I don't allow it in my house. 
Language like "Rapidly accumulating" already shows the polemic nature of this text. Beware! Although as I stated in one of my previous posts here, there is a link between schizophrenia and cannabis. Young consumers (under the ages of 16-17) heighten the risk of developing schizophrenia through cannabis consumption if they are predisposed to the condition. Correct. However, as also stated, nobody wants to legalise Cannabis for children or teenagers. We don't let them smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol either. Both of those legal drugs are harmful and specifically alcohol has a detrimental effect on developing brain tissue.


Drug impaired driving: Well there is a point that is probably true, although the authors fail to explain how the ioncidences of driving under the influence of Cannabis will rise due to legalisation. Apparently this is already a problem and illegal or legal status wont affect this statistic. There are quick tests for THC out there which can be used just like breathalisers. So there is no difference to alcohol? (I am honestly asking. I don't drink and couldn't care less whether it is legal or illegal).


'Many people who want to legalize marijuana are passionate about their perception of the alleged failures of policies aimed at reducing marijuana use but those legalization proponents seldom—if ever—describe their own plan for taxing and regulating marijuana as a legal drug. There is a reason for this imbalance; they cannot come up with a credible plan for legalization that could deliver on their exaggerated claims for this new policy.'

Sorry but there are many plans out there on how to legalise Cannabis and there have been some that have been implemented (Spain, Portugal, Netherlands and soon Washington and Colorado). So this really sounds like a child trying to argue a mute point. You want a plan, come ask me. It is relatively simple. 

I love the Quote that is bold on the side of the article:

"Reducing marijuana use is essential to improving the nation’s health, education, and productivity."

No, Improving your nations health could be done by making good food accessible at fair prices to your citicens and implementing a basic health care system for the less fortunate that can't afford a doctor. Education will not improve with less Cannabis, it would improve if your schools would all be at the same level and not dependant on price, it would improve if you shut down FOX news I believe too. the US has one of the most inadequate education systems of all westernised countries. I don't know how productivity comes in there, I think more satisfied employees would improve productivity, and I don't see how this can be tied in any way to cannabis.  Can somebody explain this?

Anyway, I could go on and on, but I need to be a bit more productive here at my work. I start my day earlier than the rest of the staff here. So I can't ruin my track record. 
Hey +Michael Vaughan Could it be that you are really pissed that you have to be off drugs and now people want to legalise it you take the stance: If I can't have them, no one can!
Is this the reason?
Also If you don't want people mocking you it might help to make sure you can back up your statements with hard evidence. Not shouting out things like "I am a racist" would help too.  And above all: refrain from obsceneties like "you are my bitch" and so on. There are some people out there on the net that just want to cause trouble, but for the most part people will have a civilised discussion with you if you stay focussed and friendly.....bro....
Just asking because healthcare means free drugs....excuse the pun.
The whole debate about drugs and legalisation thereof has been emotionally polarised. It is unfortunate, but whenever debates start to run this course it is incredibly difficult or nearly impossible to get any factual discussion going. It is sad, but I have seen enough human behaviour to know that what you are asking for +Mike Littrell is next to impossible. The next thing you have people throwing their chairs at each other like an episode of Jerry Springer. 
People don't like facts. It is also human nature to ignore, dismiss, or negate anything that goes against ones own world view. 
Here is hoping for a sensible world. 
All I'm hoping for is it all goes smoothly for Colorado and Washington, then hopefully we can emulate that around the world
Isn't it strange that a WEED, something that grows wild, causes so much controversy? Not everyone has tried it. More have experienced cigarettes, alcohol, abused legal medications, sex, rock n roll, and a host of other things. All because we are human with inquisitive minds. It doesn't mean we find them all pleasurable, nor become addicted. We make choices everyday in our lives that can have positive, or negative, impacts on our life. Humans are complex compilations of experiences, not all logical ones either as evidenced by weapons, suicide bombers, empathy, apathy, bigotry, closed mindedness, love. The list is long and it's amazing that we can find common ground. Be kind to yourself first and enjoy the day everyone....they say live like it's the first day of your life, I say live it like it's the last day.
I read through about 6 sentences before I got bored with your same old retorts +Nils Rehmann furthermore I don't give a good goddamn why you THINK I am pissed off nor do I give a FUCK why you think my statements are invalid. The fact of the matter is your little bitch boy litrell over there thinks he's the top shit and so far he's to fucking chicken shit to stand up for himself. I have stated my facts multiple times but its the norm that people like you don't fucking listen AT ALL to anything I've said nor do you even think about what I'm saying, you just immediately come up with a counterargument and don't fucking listen plain and simple. Also I love how a in a "civilized" conversation its 36 -1....bitch
+Nils Rehmann Every single time I say ILLEGAL drugs should stay illegal you dumb motherfuckers keep asking me the same goddamn question. "Well do you feel that way about aspirin?" No you stupid shit I DONT feel that way about aspirin. Then I ask you "How do you feel about the person who got fucking stoned and drove their motorcycle through a red light?" The response?? Nothing not a goddamn thing except some comment on regulating the drug more. So I don't really give a fuck what you people think of me or my mouth, weather your scared of me or think I'm a piece of shit or whatever. A: we will never meet and B: if your going to mock me when I haven't done a motherfucking thing to you better come at me with some more then "bro". I also like the fact that none has even TRIED to argue the fact that each one of you has or is racist at one point or another because you all know I'm right. Weather or not it belongs in this thread is irrelevant, you asked and I told and yet.......listens........ nope not a fucking argument about that. So you think pot should be legal, good for you. Let's say hypothetically you do make it legal nationwide. When the country goes to shit and your kids start getting hooked on harder drugs and civil wars break out I will be sitting on my porch with my bottle of woodford reserve saying "I fucking told you so bitch."
+Michael Vaughan the only possible embarrassment here is your unwaivering closed-mindedness. Clearly youre ignorant to the fact that these "board certified" doctors recommend drugs based on the payout from their pharmaceutical companies; many of which make large donations to hospitals and politicians, making it the number one enemy and propagandist of legalization.

You then too are probably ignorant to the fact that over 90% of non-paid spokes-doctors support legalization and openly say they would prescribe it; It has been recommended to me personnally by an ER doc for a broken femur and a dentist for a tooth-ache. Turns out the modern strand is so consentrated, you need far less and you can cook it, virtually eliminating all previous negatives such as tar and smoke. AND my dealer never went into a hyper-talk whisper to warn me about how every organ will fail, and then I'll die. (Also, it IS the pill epidemic thats killing our children, not this plant.)

Look, anyone with an IQ over a hundred could look up all the pro's and con's and separate the myths from the facts, then do the math to come to some (un) common-sense. Likewise, if Im presented with new facts in favour of illegalization, I'll reconsider my position, as any intelligent human would.
You however refuse new facts. You have shut your mind, thus making you incapable of learning or understanding. You still believe it causes "madness". You still think its the "gateway", not the places or people youre forced to get it from. You refuse history, ignoring other prohibitions and concurrent legalizations. You ignore real doctors, police, politicians and various socio-economist. You rant like your some idiot 10th grader trying to prove a point he has no facts about; So you want to fight? That'll prove someones point anyway, but not yours... Certainly I wouldnt mind replacing stoner in jail with a violent offender such as yourself...js.

Anyway, all of this makes you as irrelevent here as you were during the election. 
+Michael Vaughan Do you call the cops on people you see getting high? You could always take the law into your own hands too if you are so bothered by it. I'm sure they will understand and fully support you. A universal rule like the categorical imperative is that everyone loves a squealer.  Maybe you had fantasies about being a narc in the mod squad and fucking Peggy Liption, Clarence Williams III or  the guy who was the straight man cop. Let me see if he was your type.....
+Michael Vaughan ...Got a lot of hate built up inside you eh? Pot used to be distributed as medicine along time ago. Today's system needs tweaking to keep non-violent plant lovers out of the jails. Better to go natural rather than what the drug companies would ram down our throats.
P.s.- Your mind would blow +Michael Vaughan if you learned how many of these "embarrassments to society" work, live and walk around you. In fact, 3 out of every 10 adults you know probably smoke. 5 of the ten dont smoke, but dont care if you do. I guess that makes you part of the "smart" two?

P.s.s- for your argument that increased pot use would increase the use of other harder drugs:
We should ban meditation also. It alters a persons perception.
+Michael Vaughan ...I see you use profanity alot, there are laws against that.
Pot is not a gateway to harder drugs. If you are wanting to escape reality you will do whatever it takes...stop blaming the innocent little plant.
+Lyndon Boychuk and add a little salt on the wound yes
+John Phillips yes but fast food hasn't contributed to wars nor has it contributed to the degradation of society with theft/robbery or even murder. The government will ALWAYS tell us what to do that will never change but to think it should be in an anarchist way is a completely different subject.

+Michael Vaughan Check out  the little cracker Thomas Hobbes here. How about guns. I think they contribute a bit more directly to theft, robbery, murder and the degradation of society than pot.    Are you the kind of fucked up guy who wants to have the government taking those away, making them illegal for those of us who need protection from guys like you?  
+john gury last I checked guns had to be used by the PEOPLE. There has never been an incident where a gun BY ITSELF hobbled,hopped,rolled or whatever into a store and robbed the place. Its the PEOPLE that are using the guns that inflict the shootings.

Oh and to use it "against people like me" wouldnt be necessary if others didnt start shit first (Littrel)
More pot less crime seems to have it over more guns less crime as the working hypothesis. Let me run that by my freakonomics research team buddies back at the university. That is, if they can tear themselves away from my more mosques less crime conjecture that Obama wanted them to prove. It did work well historically, like during the Mongol conversions to Islam which the rest of the world regarded as a big advancement for law and order at that time, regardless of how much hashish they liked to smoke. 
+John Phillips So drug cartel wars over pot youve never heard of...hmm. Yes I know they also deal in other drugs but thats another fraction.   

You actually worked for your family, and job and your house. Do I still think you should be smoking pot, no I dont. How about this scenario, with everything you have already (degree, house, etc) lets say you get married and have kids (if you dont already). You cant tell me you would actually be proud to see your child (you pick their age) go into the corner store and purchase a bag of weed. Nor can you tell me you would actually like to see that same child trying other drugs because they want to "relax". So by making pot legal you are really allowing access to your child to ruin their life? Im glad for you making something out of yourself but I honestly think you are ruining your life smoking that shit. 
Indeed, " the only difference between the two is a safety switch..." 
well see heres where my argument comes in +John Phillips since we passed rules and regulations on alcohol sales i think the rise in underage drinking has risen along with the rise in DUI's as well as involuntary manslaughters because of DUI's. Do you really HONESTLY  think that the legalization of weed will actually decrease the amount of underage children messing with that shit? What about those that are DUI? Do you honestly think that will go down?  I find it hard to believe that all of the "say no to drugs" is considered a propaganda not based in reality. Ill use the meth one as an example. 

I understand your belief on free choice but im trying to look out for MY well being not anyone elses because in the end you can only rely on yourself to handle things. 
+Richard Branson ....thanks for the post. It's been interesting, as well as informative. The comment section has also given entertainment a new name. I'll leave that name for you to reveal.
+Michael Vaughan you tell me I don't listen to your arguments. You can't say that without trying it. So far you have not brought forward any valid argument. If you say that legalisation of drugs will make the country go to shit, that is not an argument. If you would say, legalisation of drugs will make the country go to shit BECAUSE...A) it is proven to be a gateway drugs...(see here, quote scientific paper), B) Drug trafficking will go up BECAUSE blank blank blank.... and so on.
You can't just blurt out sentences like someone suffering from torretts and expect people to listen and take you serious.
From all your posts I am gathering that you lost someone near to you due to a traffic collision where the person at fault was under the influence of narcotics or alcohol. You actually NEVER clearly stated that. I have to guess. I love swearing when I am on my own or in company that knows me (I think it is relaxing), but I do refrain from it here and also at my work place.  Why can't you do the same. If you can't express your thoughts in a civilised manner why do you think people should listen to you. 
Also I don't know what 36-1 means. Maybe the fact that you are arguing against 36 other people and feel that is unfair. Don't. The best thing about fighting with words is that even a small weak person can't beat an army. I really want to debate this with you. I really do. I am a scientist. I am open to discuss anything. But I refuse to have a battle of wits with someone who comes unarmed. 

Your turn.
+Mike Littrell you can't be president. You make too much sense. Also -  show me your birth certificate.....
+Mike Littrell we can't have presidents that get high all the time and sit around on the couch and accomplish nothing in their lives....No we can't have that, sir.

Still waiting on a reply from Michael though. 
I'm sure nobody here, including the anonymous flunky who makes these posts for Sir +Richard Branson, knows anything about how corrupt the system and economics of tobacco farming, subsidy and allocation has been in the US. (The Al Gore family is a sanitized example).  Tobacco  will probably be the model for weed and naturally fall into the domain of ATF once the DEA and law enforcement gets taken out of it.  I don't think the FDA has any dominion over Tobacco despite nicotine being a drug but, hey, correct me if I am wrong there Sir Richard, who is undoubtedly investing big time in whatever we get going commercially in the US and UK.  He will probably use guys like Al Gore to get insider tips on all this, along with Bono, Willie Nelson and Prince fucking Charles as they lobby their various fans in government, sucking up to them for favors like the hogs they are.
+john gury those are harsh words. I guess this is why Oregon voted the legalisation down. They were worried about a state monopoly and wanted a more open market. At least so I hear.
+Mike Littrell I thought it had to do with the dispensaries and the fact that all product would be produced as well as sold by the state. As i said, I only heard this on a side note and am not totally up to date on this. 
As far as tourism is concerned I have been talking about that for a long time. Anyone who ever went to the Netherlands and visited Amsterdam for example will realise that there is a HUGE potential for an economic boost through tourism. I personally hope that this will not be the case. Since that would mean that cannabis would still be illegal everywhere else. Otherwise you wouldn't need to travel :-)
+Nils Rehmann Harsh?  What, because I know what I am writing about? You guys don't realize how far this has progressed commercially and what the real historical legal and economic precedents are. E.g a fine product from Colorado: 
+john gury I like the drink idea. But again like with cigarettes it might give a false impression being wrapped in something that looks like it is for teenagers. Also as a chemist I should object to THC being sold as a lone medicine. Too many side effects on it's own. It has been proven in studies that THC by itself can cause temporary psychosis. 
However, I don't think that you are wrong, just calling people hogs on a hunch without any evidence, or painting everyone with a tar brush is, well, harsh. 
And yes I do see how far this has progressed. 
+Mike Littrell Ok, then go ahead and tell me all about the topics I brought up like the legal and economic structure of tobacco agriculture and processing vis-a-vis ATF and the role of the FDA in the evolution of drug regulatory enforcements along with how these companies should be incorporated so guys like Sir +Richard Branson can bankroll them and facilitate more real social change than any number of million hits on some bullshit youtube video. And do not give me any back talk for run-on constructs. I do that intentionally. Obviously. 
Jeez, do I have to do everything of value here?
Not that I really need any of this to tell you what is up with the current administration general policy since I can just get the summary from my homeboys in Chicago. Homeboys who get it and who bear absolutely no similarity vis-a-vis the Joe Biden term of endearment for Chris Christie, thank god. How big do you think that guy would get if he was smoking pot?  600-700 lbs?   
+Mike Littrell I did not direct them to you and I do not care if you asked for them or not. Your personal cares are of no concern or value to me, much like your half baked pharmacology as well as your stupid observation that you began going to the gym more when you began smoking pot. I think most people find that it makes them very fucking hungry as well as having proven value as an  appetite stimulant and anti-nausea agent for chemo patients. 
+Bryan Hensley That is why I wrote "most people  find that it makes them very fucking hungry as well as having proven value as an  appetite stimulant and anti-nausea agent for chemo patients."  Not: ALL PEOPLE find...
I think you can safely assume that I am aware of how there are exceptions to how people react to various substances they ingest. If you want me to write only in terms of absolute truths for all humanity I can do that but it will rapidly go beyond the comprehension levels of almost everyone stoned on pot. 
+Mike Littrell  I was referring to the effects of pure THC. From your post I gather that we missed each others points slightly. THC (delta 9- in this case) is balanced in the plant material with other cannabinoids ( I am sure you know that, but for other peoples sake). Most of them are present in small quantities, while cannbidiol (CBD) is present at a higher concentration than most others. CBD has shown to counteract some of the effects of THC on the nervous system. This counteraction in many cases prohibits an inherent "overdose" of THC which can lead to symptoms such as anxiety or paranoia. 
Unfortunately this research only became available rather recently, after many producer of so called pharmaceuticals already ran with the idea of pure THC. 
So there is a major difference between a drug such as marinol. 
Legalise the plant goddamit. 
+Mike Littrell Be specific. How would I know what? I need to have smoked pot to draw conclusions about it?  If you feel that knowledge of anything requires the validation of direct personal experience then that is an interesting position to take. For example, the act of murder. How would I know what the effects of murder are if I have not personally killed someone is your ridiculous and  pot addled logic. 
+John Phillips your goddamn right I'm all about myself.

+Michael Littrell interesting that you actually base your opinion worth on a bunch of +1s I also bet your one of those guys who relys heavily on your Facebook likes to determine the outcome of your day. Secondly I didn't know that aweber communications hires staff who are under the influence of marijuana. Nice github BTW.

+Nils Rehmann really I could give two fucks what people think of me weather its positive or negative. You want facts here they are: FACT) I will NEVER meet any of you therefore how emotional some of you are getting over this humors me. FACT) I am speaking in a civilized fucking manner FACT) The large majority of you want this to take place therefore every single one of you keeps asking me why I don't want it to happen again and again and again and again I keep telling you why I don't want it to happen and yet you keep asking me "why?". Well here's my question why the fuck don't you read what I wrote? These things weather they be fact or not are my REASONS so stop fucking asking me if your to lazy to scroll the fuck up and read. Your turn.

+Bryan Hensley All men are mortal. Socrates was a man. Therefore all men are Socrates. 
+Michael Vaughan I thought you left. I am glad you are still here. Honestly.
So from reading your posts you don't want IT(I guess the legalisation of drugs) to happen. I can see that. I think your point is that the country will go to "shit". OK, I got that, I don't know what "to shit" really means in this case. But OK that is your point.
I say legalisation will make the country soar to unknown heights. Legalisation of gay marriage also will, and if every American eats a blueberry pie  on pie day, the US will reclaim their status of superpower of the world. I have nothing to back this up, but you are an idiot if you don't see why I say this and why it is right.
That is down the lines of your "argumentation". You allude to "facts" that can not be backed up. My "facts" can.
You have never in this whole conversation actually said what you mean. I am sure it is all pretty clear in your head, but you have to make me and others understand your point. So far that has not happened. So far all you have done is call everyone a bitch and fucking stupid and told people to shut the fuck up. That is NOT a civilised conversation. Not even in Georgia.  

Oh and it is "whether" unless you are talking about the "weather". Take it from someone who had to learn this language later in life. We were graded on our spelling and that scared me for life. Now I have to return the favour (before you try to correct "favour" -  in England they spell that with ou, but in America you can spell it with just o)
2 hours and 17 min left here.....
I know plenty of lawyers, Dr.s, Ph.D. and research scientists that consume THC on a recreational basis. All pretty successful. So I don't think that is a concern. 
It boils down to what Mayor Laguardia said in 1926 about the Prohibition of alcohol.

'Prohibition cannot be enforced for the simple reason that the majority of American people do not want it to be enforced and are resisting its enforcement. 
That being so, the only thing to do under our form of 
government is to abolish a law which cannot be enforced, a law which the people of this country do not want to be enforced.’

Couple this with the quote from the movie posted here by +Richard Branson : If you can't even enforce the drug policies in a high security prison, how do you want to enforce it in a free society?
I would like to thank all of the posters on here for the point, counter-point threads. The concern of THC content is being addressed by the cultivation of a plant that doesn't have it since it doesn't help those that smoke cannabis for medicinal reasons. Legalizing pot isn't going to create a wave of abusers, as in the sky is falling mentality. Alcohol, tobacco, and firearms are legal. Not everyone tries, nor owns, them. Centralizing prescription drugs should be done everywhere. Had that been in place I may still be married, however, she fled to Florida for obvious reasons since Michigan changed to that system. Legal drugs are abused much more than anyone wants to admit, I've learned way more than I wanted. There should be more active control of those drugs than pot, hands down.
+Nils Rehmann thanks for that and yes spell check on this keyboard sucks. I understand what your saying that I need to back up facts, but given the three days we've been at this subject and trying to keep up with multiple peoples conversations proves to be a headache. I don't have any facts to back this up but rather state that meaning and have someone say "oh that makes sense why your an idiot mike" I didn't say that. I was trained not taught years ago not to take shit from anyone no matter what. So when I initially stated my first post and litrell mocked me I immediately turn defensive. When people ask me multiple times what I mean and what I want and I tell them and they think to deeply and misunderstand what I mean it irritates me and to have to repeat myself to multiple people more then 4 times sets me off. And I don't back down even when the dead horse has been beaten in the ground.

Let me backtrack to my first post. "We are a society that idolizes drugs" (or similar quote). I personally believe we are. Our movies (Americans at least) seem to always glorify drug use and the whole "get richer with little consequences" feeling. Now I understand this is just entertainment but look at people who actually use the drug they may have great jobs they may be great people but they want more whether that be more drugs or more money. Now take that same scenario with someone I know personally who does drugs...with his children in the same house and I'm talking infant children. You cant tell me that we have no moral obligations to these children! And yet what I keep hearing from you all is "Let's just regulate it more." Why have to regulate it at ALL?! I really have a hard time dealing with the seemingly lack of moral fiber our society has. We aren't all perfect and I for one am DEFINITELY not but seeing this type of situation and hearing peoples reactions of "its not bad there are worse things" well yeah there are but how can you blatently ignore this one?!
+Michael Vaughan  WOW. This was sensible stuff. I actually agree with some of the things you said, and for the ones I don't, they are subjective. 
I personally don't think that our society idolises drugs, but I can now finally see how you think it does. But do you think that a society that has a legalised system for some drugs (say cannabis e.g.) would be idolising those drugs more? Or would it change anything at all? I personally don't think so. let say our society DOES idolise drugs, they aren't legal (for now) and that doesn't seem to stop the idolising. 
I personally think that information is more important. 
When I was 15 my class went on a 4 day trip to a youth hostel where we were educated on drugs and their effects. We learned from social workers that were working with heroine addicts, we heard from ex addicts that pulled themselves out of the gutter after a hardcore cocain addiction. I still for myself like to use some drugs recreationally. I used to drink alcohol, but my consumption is somewhere at the mark of 4 beers a month if that. You could say I don't drink. I just don't like it. For a while I was smoking something called Spice. A legal smoking mixture that turned out to be based on opiate basis. I got off it really fast. Not my thing. Didn't like it. But it was legal. Which doesn't mean that I need to use it. I can choose to. Which I think is the same for other drugs. Would you become a junkie just because heroin would be legalised. I don't think so. 
As for consuming drugs in the same household as infant children. That is simply irresponsible. I don't think that anyone here (including Mike L.) would condone the use of drugs in company of infant children. I used to smoke and I would change the sidewalk if I was smoking and I saw a mother and young child walking towards me. 

So to sum this up: I don't think that our society would deteriorate because of drug legalisation. People that want to do drugs do them anyway. People that don't, do not. However, I think that information would help our society far far more than demonisation and criminalisation. 

Also, yes I agree spell check sucks. 
I am sooooo glad that a sensible discussion is possible in this matter. Let us continue this. However it is nearing 20 past 4 and you all know what that means....I am going home and will be offline for a bit (what else did you think;-) ).  
+Nils Rehmann agree with you on education being key. Had I known years ago about many other things, my life would've taken a different course. Witnessing what was happening around me wasn't enough to prevent me from learning the school of hard knocks way. I'm just glad my children learned from education, by parenting, family, friends, and teachers that gave a damn. Hardest part for me to learn? Not to be an enabler. Manipulators are crafty people that can do that magic, they get you in and play you like a puppet without blinking an eye. That is more of a problem than pot users.
Spell check? Really? Try using a swype keyboard on a may like it, the dictionary is British based.
+Mike Littrell Alcohol has ruined and killed many more people than pot ever has. Can't say I have known anyone that was violent after smoking, or ingesting pot. Most are too laid back to even consider aggressive behaviour. Alcohol is legal to make for personal consumption, why not cannabis? Or marigolds, without the treated seeds. There are many plants that are used for various reasons. How many know of the plant that produces a product that kills, yet cooked, is used in cooking? We the humans, shouldn't be so consumed about this weed that is a very minor problem compared to the bigger ones ahead. We, the parasites, are consuming the life out of this planet faster than it can replenish it. There should be the enthusiasm given for that, instead of one weed.
Agree with the last part of +Bruce Bonham post. Do you think it would be wise to make recycling mandatory? it really true that the highest concentration of billionaires live in Amsterdam, where it's legal to do a lot of things banned elsewhere?
+Bruce Bonham Highest concentration of billionaires is supposed to be Moscow according to Forbes. Then  NYNY and London. Which both make sense. You would think maybe Hong Kong would be there or perhaps the county in CA where Zuck, Larry Ellison et. al live. I think the conclusion is Billionaires get to do more of whatever, wherever they are. However, money is not power in that no billionaire can get an O'hare airport to shut down for their royal ass, imperial arrival. 
I think the billionaires in Amsterdam have nothing to do with the drug trade or prostitution. But the world diamond exchange is also in Amsterdam. That is where you will meet the billionaires. Mostly orthodox jews actually. It kinda looks unreal to see prostitutes in the window of their chambers and the group of men dressed in black with their hats and all walking past it. 
What's the alternative? Remove the guards from the maximum security prison? Clearly that would lead to an unimaginably worse situation. It's easy to point out defects in the way things are being done and create an army of haters. It's a far more difficult but way more beneficial thing to suggest workable alternatives. I hope this docco isn't just a Branson marketing gimmick 
+john gury yeah I forgot about heineken. Gives me a headache. 
I just saw that my post was a bit misleading. I meant that most of the people I saw at the diamond exchange were orthodox jews. Not that they are all the billionaires. 
Welcome to Amsterdam people. If you haven't been, it is a must see. So much stuff packed into one city is simply amazing.
Somehow the place is not falling apart either with all the drugs semi legalised. Even the cops are relaxed.
On my first trip to the city my friends and I got lost looking for our hotel. Suddenly there was a voice behind us asking: Can I help you? It was a cop. My friend stopped right in his tracks and had that "busted" look on his face. And we only just got there.
Well turned out that Mr. Supercop, as we called him for the rest of the trip, really just wanted to help. He walked us to our hotel and then he said this:
"So you guys wanna find a good coffee shop? There is one right over there to your right. It is good place, I go there often. Have a great time in Amsterdam."

This is a long time ago, but I would certainly +1 him still today. 
+Mike Littrell I know the feeling. Lucky for me to live north of the border. I am not lying, the attitude towards cannabis in this country played a not so small part in my decision to move here. The cops that I know are pretty cool dudes. i even know one of the bodyguards of the PM. The guy is nice, too bad his duty is to protect an asshole other than his own, namely Mr. "minimum mandatory sentences". And then there is those that do his questions asked.   
+Mike Littrell I will give you a very very good advice you should take to heart. Make sure you know the place you want to move to well, very well. I realised after moving country several times that there is no paradise and every country is screwed up. Some more than others. Therefore it is a search for the lesser evil. Take the Netherlands for example. they have a very liberal reputation. Drugs are tolerated to a certain extend. People are generally inclusive and friendly. When you start living there you realise that there is a significant movement towards criminalising the drugs again, getting rid of the prostituion in the country and what is worst, the general mindset of the people is drifting right. All these realities are not seen easily if at all.
(No offense my dear Dutch friends. I love you all, and it certainly isn't the whole country)
+Mike Littrell I don't really understand the reasons. In my opinion the movement is using the drugs and prostitution card as a scapegoat and campaign platform. I kinda see a connection to the right movement. of course the shift to the right can be observed right around the planet (which is frightening). It manifests differently in different parts of the world. 
However, the official reasoning is that there is too much general debauchery and chaos due to drug tourism. That could easily end if the rest of the world would wake up. As i stated earlier - no need for travel -
Although in my experience Amsterdam nightlife is relatively tame. Especially out on the streets. Hamburg, Dublin or London are way more dangerous and violent on weekend nights. 
+Mike Littrell you can always come and visit me in the Maritimes. Stable economy here too. We are always in a recession, therefore we never notice any changes. 
+Nils Rehmann What about the Islamic / immigrant issues, Theo Van Gogh and all that?  
+john gury I think that exactly that is where most of this movement to the right that I mentioned stems from. Although I think it would be unfair to label just one parameter as the cause. But yes, the immigrant issue is by far the the biggest point.
+Curtis Dobyns I wasn't asking you to become a Muslim, simply pointing out a solution and an invitation to study how one society managed to overcome this problem. Learn from the successes of those that came before us to solve these current problems which are not new at all, they existed in the past also.
+Nils Rehmann That is really interesting. Euro politics has that element of reaction from the right that goes way back. 
Yes +john gury it does. The other really interesting part about European politics is the close proximity of neighbouring countries. Which is the total opposite here. Canada being the second largest country in the world next to Russia only has ONE neighbour. Totally different scenario and totally different politics. 
+Nils Rehmann Immigration  demographic patterns are so very different too.  The US is very much new world western hemisphere with Spanish as our major second language and that demographic shift which is the biggest in US history.  
+Farhan Khan Right, I got that.  But this post, by +Richard Branson ?  This post is about more liberty.  Your post is about enforcing restraint.
It is also true that when we examine history, as you suggest, we can clearly see that when any religion controls politics or the people, it tends to end with disaster, and I don't see that as any victory worth repeating.  I think we've learned what we needed to learn from that, or, I hope we have.
+Curtis Dobyns We know how enforcing restraint is working in the world today :) so no I was suggesting that the historical lesson to learn is that together with education, esse people off harmful substances. The reason it fails is that if you ask people to stop doing something they love, they will resist, as they are now, so educate them and surely ease them off the substance. Recall the abuse of tobacco some decades ago and see the positive changes through education that are coming out now. This is a more involved topic which requires more analysis and discussion :) As for religion, just because you made a content regarding religion, I just want to add that looking at the Islamic history, at the time where Islam was at it's peak, peace and prosperity was spreading. Once the new leaders that inherited the positions of power stopped practicing Islam, that is when things started to go downhill. If we study our history these facts will come out. Islam is and always had been about peace through justice for all equally under One God, regardless of their own beliefs. There are several examples of just Muslim leaders who supported diversity and protected citizens of their states regardless of their beliefs and this helps society tackle challenges it faces together, instead if eating time, energy, and money fighting each other.
Funny the same people that push the social agenda of socialism are also pushing the legalization of drugs. So when everyone is waiting around for their next dole payment they will be so stoned they won't know or care they are wards of the states and have lost there freedom.  Amsterdam is re-eligalizing drugs, they have been down this road and have relearned this age old lesson.
Hahaaa, socialism. I was kinda waiting for the good old socialism card to get played. Funny that some people still equate evil with socialism. Anything and everything that isn't the same old status quo is somehow socialism. The people that are trying to re-illegalise (with i) drugs in the Netherlands (not only Amsterdam, that is just one city in the Netherlands, which has many other cities like Maastricht, Eindhoven, Rotterdam and Utrecht) are mainly a right wing movement such as the tea party is in the states.
I don't know how you derive that that it is socialism somehow that wants to legalise drugs. How can you actually link the two? +Emmett Conrecode 
+Farhan Khan I do see your point.  Hundreds of years ago, Islam represented the most progressive, civilized, and educated population on the planet.
That is not currently the case, nor is that likely to change any time soon.
I am pleased to see that the percentage of both Muslim AND Christian is finally on the decline.  If this continues, I hope the species may finally have an opportunity to achieve full potential.
And +Farhan Khan I hope you understand that the argument that blames current leadership among any group is quite useless.  "Things were once better, and it's only those people in charge that are in favor of (insert embarrassing behavior here)."  Leaders only lead those that follow.
See how the world looked at America during Bush II for an example.  I presume it's similar with Muslim leadership, the loudest and most dangerous leaders gain the most attention.
The Muslim world must purge it's own leaders to sway the west into believing the mantra about peace and tolerance and respect.
All of us need to work harder to earn the trust of the rest.  And we must all remove any feelings about others.
Brotherhood, not Otherhood.
+Curtis Dobyns "All of us need to work harder to earn the trust of the rest.  And we must all remove any feelings about others."  That is ridiculous. Why do we need to "work harder" to get the trust of people vowed to kill all of us and plunge the world back into darkness? That is as absurd as saying what we really needed for world peace was to remove our negative feelings about Nazis  By that standard we should put Julia Roberts or Deepak Chopra in charge of the CIA or the state department. 
+john gury Hmmm, first, context.

Trust is never automatic.  And when there are weapons pointed in all directions, it's a much more difficult challenge, to achieve trust.
You're being far more inflammatory than I, but saying essentially the same thing.  
But it absolutely goes both ways.  There are children growing up in spots on the globe where bombs and shells go off every single day.  And in some of those spots, "America" is the enemy.  And like it or not, some of those children will grow up, and we're going to have another problem to deal with.  Take a look at what we're doing right now with drones, and where we're doing it.  A mostly undefined enemy.

I don't really want to derail this thread, and I'm not sure if you're just trolling me, but all sides of this, that is, people everywhere, have to put in some effort if there's ever going to be a lasting solution to conflict.

Finally, you're presenting an "us" and "them" argument.  Them I presume to be Muslims, so us must be Christians.  Christians have plenty of blood on their hands, and they're going to have to work extra hard to gain any trust as well.  Remember, in some of those places on the planet I mentioned earlier, the face of Christianity is not that of Jesus, it's the face of Bush II.

Finally, the biggest challenge we face as a species is the idea of others.  As long as any of us feel like that toward any of us, it's going to continue to be a real challenge to survive.
America been a low life since Nixon. I remember seeing the skull and cross bones, the 'x' was the bones in his name, back in '73, when touring the Med. There was other graffiti that wasn't pro America as well. This attitude has been growing for years, not just in recent memory. If my recollection is correct, the 'feel good' started waning after Kennedy was assassinated, with an exception, when Clinton was in office 'some' of that resentment lifted.
Me? I'd like to see all those hungry for terror and blood put into a great arena and have at it until one emerges as victorious, then shoot that one so the rest of us can start fresh without weapons. Utopian yes, but it would be a lot less stressful then sending children to fight someone else's war.
Now lets smoke/ingest/drink something and have the conversation get back to legalizing/regulating, the original post.
Not the best idea, what next, look its just an easy way of saying our countries are in an economic crisis so by de - criminalising them it gives people more money. In no way should we criminalize people or stigmatize them but we should maybe aim to help individuals. 
Maybe we should aim to help individuals perhaps this could be a good step.
+John Phillips Watching Jimmy Fallon guest +Richard Branson tonight, and although I felt he wasn't given enough air time to speak on the subject, he did say that Portugal has chosen to give help to drug abusers instead of jail time. It had reduced heroin use by half, reduced crime related to drugs, in the last ten years. There were another examples of other countries in Europe that have changed the laws. As stated, he wasn't given enough air time. You did fail to mention the free education given to inmates, and use of libraries not available to the general population.
The cost of pure cocaine in S. America....$10,000 USD
The price after it hits the USA....$175,000 USD I believe thats before it gets cut.
Legalizing cannabis would eventually reduce the cost, making it less of a crime driven item. After all, it's a weed that can be grown anywhere. I recall a guy I knew in my younger years that was paid to go out into farm land in Nebraska and cut it down at a buck a bushel.
+ Daniel Williams..agree with you.
+John Phillips  Dwight D. Eisenhower never spent much time in prisons if he thinks you are secure there. Attica! Attica! 
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