Imagine my surprise when I saw the headline on The New Yorker article: “Is marijuana as safe as we think it is?”
Hell, no, it isn’t, but when did East Coast liberals catch on? Author Malcolm Gladwell plays it straight in his essay as he reviews the substantial evidence that society has unleashed a monster in society without really thinking through the downside. Call it the Jurassic Park scenario: sure, it’s cool as hell to pet a brontosaurus, but what do we do when the T-Rex goes haywire? Gladwell shows there is plenty of reason to think that high-THC Super Pot can go haywire big time, and that no one in positions of responsibility has any idea how to deal with the monster when it’s on the loose.
In addition to his own analysis, Gladwell brings welcome attention to author Alex Berenson’s manifesto, “Tell Your Children: The Truth About Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence.”
In one of the most fascinating sections of “Tell Your Children,” he sits down with Erik Messamore, a psychiatrist who specializes in neuropharmacology and in the treatment of schizophrenia. Messamore reports that, following the recent rise in marijuana use in the U.S. (it has almost doubled in the past two decades, not necessarily as the result of legal reforms), he has begun to see a new kind of patient: older, and not from the marginalized communities that his patients usually come from. These are otherwise stable middle-class professionals. Berenson writes, “A surprising number of them seemed to have used only cannabis and no other drugs before their breaks. The disease they’d developed looked like schizophrenia, but it had developed later—and their prognosis seemed to be worse. Their delusions and paranoia hardly responded to antipsychotics.”
If the left-wing media is ready to acknowledge the danger of legal marijuana, there may still be some narrow window left whereby cultural sanity may prevail. Probably not, but there won’t be another chance for decades, maybe ever. I highly recommend Gladwell’s article to cultural conservatives, and do yourself and your family a favor — Don’t ever say, “Well, at least, it’s only pot.”