I think we have learned more about toilets

Donald Trump and his new Republican Party proved something: That a Constitution written when indoor plumbing was actually cutting-edge technology, is not itself strong enough to withstand a manipulative assault on it by a modern day organized crime mindset that literally came of age in the dark gaps found between its words.

Marijuana

Words themselves have no real meaning, not on their own anyway. They are really just jumbles of recognizable sounds that we put together. It’s once we collectively agree on a meaning for that group of sounds that, Boom!, you’ve got a word.

When we begin to be mindful of the associations we carry for most words and names we begin to see that our thoughts, feeling, and maybe even many of our reactions, are largely built upon our own unique memories and experiences. Simply put, the word ‘Mom’ doesn’t evoke the same feelings and images to me as it does to you.

As we grow and start to interact with our world, we encounter things and we are told their names by the people around us. “That thing over there is called a bee, Johnny.”. Being curious little kid, Johnny wants to learn more about things so he reaches out grab a hold of the bee and…

Okay, stop a minute…

Now I am going to ask the reader to take a second and pause – Imagine what your initial reaction would be if someone that had never seen a bee before, reached out to grab one right in front of you. What would your knee-jerk reaction be?

If there is any truth to the assertion that we humans actually create our worlds, it is evidenced by the way we attach significance to many of the words that we hear every day, binding them with the bricks and mortar of our own individual experiences, emotions, and attitudes. ‘Mom’ is not just ‘mom’, she is ‘MOM’.

But it is also in this way that we create our own blindnesses, when we allow our distractions, resentments, desires, and prejudices tell us how to feel and react to a single word or phrase.

…And now back to our little bee!

And if you had never experienced a stinging insect before, bees sure do look fuzzy and cute. And if Johnny is curious about his world, he is likely to reach out and pick up the bee. It’s at this point that we experience that initial reaction to a kid trying to pick up a bee right in front of us. And if you have ever been stung before, or you are allergic to bee venom, you’re probably going to have a different reaction when Johnny goes to pick up the bee than someone like, say Steve Irwin would have.

The whole point to this is to talk about the fact that older slang words for cannabis like pot, weed, and even marijuana, by their very nature are slowing the cause of replacing the public perception of cannabis as a real medicine. Let alone as a safer alternative to some of the legal intoxicants people already use.

There is also the added fact that ‘cannabis’ is actually the plants real name. Add to that the fact that there are literally millions of people out there who still believe the antiquated disinformation campaign that pushed the ‘marijuana leads to harder stuff’ idea.

This one single action of carefully choosing our words when it comes to talking about cannabis, will help us more rapidly bring about these reforms because we won’t have deal with accidentally be conjuring up images of Cheech and Chong sitting in a parked and smoke-filled car, as one of them asks how his driving is.

It’s just not as funny when you just say you use a vaporizer with cannabis to treat the pain from your spinal cord damage.

As funny as that is, it has never gotten us closer to the image of seeing a doctor prescribe cannabis for spinal cord pain because of how effective it is. But also because they were concerned about the addiction potential to many of the other pain medicines they used to use.

“Can you pick me up a half of Orange County Lumber Truck while you’re out?“

One of the bigger problems cannabis faces as a medicine is that it has a few street names, such as Marijuana. That particular name comes saddled with serious baggage. Baggage that will likely require the slow erosion of time in order to really shake off such an entrenched reputation, even if it’s used only for the phrase ‘medical marijuana’.

Of course, none of that won’t stop millions from visiting dispensaries, chomping down edibles, packing a bowl or three, spinning up a few blunts, and vaping themselves into a Doritos fueled fervor. So, what’s the big deal right? As long as the people finally have some sort of legal access to some kind dank nugs at 4:20, what does it matter? Am I right?

Outside of the fact that I’m likely off by a couple decades on some of my nicknames, my point is that cannabis have had to exist ‘outside the margins’ as a street drug long enough for that whole paragraph to be written. The main problem with that is that we are beginning to learn just how much the demonization of certain substances because of their street profiles has caused us to ignore some very beneficial medicines, because we have been too busy watching Cheech and Chong.

It turns out that this whole thing isn’t so much a drug problem, as it is a challenge for all of us to learn how to open and change our minds about things we think we understand.

The Gateway Drug

Cannabis has been proven (not only by modern science, but by thousands of years of human history) to be an effective medicine for many things humanity is plagued with, pain being one of the main ones these days.

Yes, CBD is one of the compounds getting a lot of attention as something that is helping folks. But THC actually plays a very big part in pain relief as well. The problem is, it faces that bane of all middle aged children: A bad reputation!

It’s the compound in Mary Jane that gets you high man. It’s the part of the drug that got saddled with one of the worst parts of adolescence, a nickname. THC is the stuff in Dope that got it the memorable nickname “gateway drug”. And if any 12 year old can tell you, a bad reputation is harder to get rid of than booger on the tip of your finger.

The worst part is, it turns out THC wasn’t the real gateway drug. The real gateway drug it turns out, is and always has been, the pursuit and hoarding of wealth.

invisible

Chronic pain, headaches, muscular issues, and migraines from cervical damage, just plain suck.

If you’re a drug seeking individual, this kind of pain is like a winning lottery ticket. Willy Wonka meets Powerball.

But, if you’re just trying to stay sober, and do life in a clear and lucid manner, pain is a lifetime sentence in the sandals of Sisyphus.

unstable tower

day by day
drags on by
frozen in place
by violent tides
an unstable tower
of promises
skin color
disease
and hope
to heal
or die
but not suffer
after all
the poison is gone
people need love
the rest is loose
and transient
we end up
together