‘Yes we can(nabis)!’ say Mother Nature and Duncan Hines

It’s a plant. It’s green, and somewhat controversial. Some claim that it has medicinal benefits, while others believe it should be banned.

I am of course talking about asparagus.

But the same could be said for marijuana. The main problem in the debate over medical marijuana laws is that it’s hard to convince a guy who’s stoned that he may be wrong.

I know this because I used to live with a couple of potheads in college. The deep political or philosophical arguments we’d occasionally get into always ended poorly:

Me: “But even President Kennedy acknowledged that across-the-board tax cuts stimulate economic growth.”

Roommate: “Ha ha ha.”

Me: “You’re against supply-side economics?”

Roommate: “Ha ha ha. No, it’s my hand. Look at it. It’s so funny.”

A starting point in this debate is the theory that most people are flocking to all of the new dispensaries not for medicinal reasons so much as they are looking for a way to smoke weed without getting in trouble. This theory is completely wrong and offensive, of course. Everyone is clearly aware of the sudden epidemic of headaches and nausea sweeping across the Grand Valley.

Admittedly, I’m ignorant as to the alleged medical benefits of marijuana. Personally, I’ve never experienced any sort of pain that couldn’t be relieved by a two Aleves and four Jack ‘n’ Cokes.

Plus I’ve never tried the stuff. Not once. Not a joint. Not a puff. Not even a Clintonesque pseudo-inhale. And that’s after going to college at CU for four years, which makes me either a principled anti-drug advocate or the most boring guy to have ever lived in Boulder.

Smoking dope has just never appealed to me. I’m already lazy and overeat. I don’t need an accelerant. Then there’s the legitimate concern of marijuana being a gateway drug. What this means that is that marijuana can make you so completely stoned that you wind up wanting to move to Gateway. That’s pretty high.

Yet it’s popularity is soaring, to the point where the medical marijuana business seem to be the only part of our economy that’s growing. You’ll probably soon find dispensaries joining the Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce. So those of you who think those “Chamber After Hours” get-togethers are boring may want to give them another shot.

The main argument, of course, for medical marijuana is that it provides pain relief for cancer victims. Maybe it does. But plenty of others seem to be stretching the boundaries of the voter-enacted legislation. A hangnail is not an excuse to get high. Having to watch “The View” is.

I’m sort of libertarian on the whole issue. Legalize marijuana completely or ban it outright. I really don’t care either way. Just don’t call it medicine, especially when it comes in the form of brownies. Legitimate pharmaceuticals from a medical professional should not involve a Duncan Hines recipe.

And will you medical marijuana shops please stop hijacking Mother Nature’s image? Your assumption that she endorses cannabis is destroying her reputation. Most of us have always held Mother Nature up as a strong, yet gentle, benevolent grandmotherly type, who roams plush fields, sprinkling her love and kindness down across fertile lands. You’re making her sound like she spends all day smoking bowls and wolfing down Cheetos while playing “Grand Theft Auto.”

Yes, marijuana is all natural. Yes it can be found in nature. So can poison ivy and plutonium, and you won’t find me putting those into my body. At least not again.

I’m guess I’m just old-fashioned. If I’m going to have to ingest narcotics, I want them coming from a licensed, highly educated pharmacist in a lab coat, standing on a platform 2 feet above me. I don’t want it from a business where the sign out front has stenciled lettering and a green leaf.

But that’s just me. As for the public, the debate rages on. Some will argue passionately for their right to medicate via cannabis, while others will point out the dangerous side effects. Yet no matter what your viewpoint, there’s at least one thing all of us can agree on.

We really need to ban asparagus.

E-mail Steve Beauregard at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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