Save 440,000 lives each year – with Cannabis. It's high time.


We can do it through the use of some innovative social technology: Mandate a compulsory substitution of cannabis for tobacco in all manufactured tobacco products.

OK, I know you are already snickering, but give me a moment, and I believe I can bring you all on board. Each year, at least 440,000 Americans die from tobacco related diseases, in fact, a recent report suggests that as much as 74% of all cancers are related to tobacco smoke. Those statistics reveal a national tragedy, not only in terms of human suffering, but also for the staggering financial impact on our families, and the strain it puts on our national health care system.

There is a powerful lobby that guards the interests of the tobacco companies, and their commercial partners (very powerful, indeed, considering the stakes). Therefore, any solution to this yearly carnage must also take into account those forces that would keep America smoking tobacco.

Cannabis, unlike tobacco, does not kill its users. In fact, the plant has has both anti-cancinogenic and anti-microbial properties. Studies reveal that even long term, chronic cannabis smokers have shown no elevated risks of cancer of any kind. The main objection to its use appears to be the fact that it produces a mild euphoria when ingested. One has to ask, which is a preferable side effect: death or happiness?

By mandating the substitution of cannabis in manufactured tobacco products (rather than an outright ban on tobacco itself, which would only serve to criminalize users), one would not only address the business needs of cigarette manufactures, but also those of its agricultural suppliers, since cannabis is well suited to the same soils that support tobacco.

If saving 440,000 lives each year is not enough, consider these additional factors.

1. Nicotine (for which tobacco cigarettes, and chewing tobacco are simply delivery systems) is highly addictive and extremely difficult to abandon. Cannabis, on the other hand, rates below caffein on the addiction scale.

2. The tobacco plant has only one use: to satisfy the craving of the nicotine addict. Cannabis, has in fact, a spectrum of uses which include the manufacture of fiber, oil, food-grade protein, building materials, bio-fuel, plastics, and medicine.

3. By eliminating the prohibition of cannabis, we effectively increase our police force by 5%, since, presently, 5 out of every 100 police officers do nothing but arrest and book people for possessing cannabis.*

4. In addition, with the commercial production of cannabis by farmers, we eliminate the destruction of our national parklands and forests by illegal growers.

5. By ending the prohibition of cannabis we take the profit motive away from drug cartels, and street dealers, and eliminate a good deal of funding of illegal activities.

6. By regulating the sale and distribution of cannabis, we protect our children from unscrupulous pushers who never ask for proof of age, and instead put sales into the hands of licensed vendors who would face stiff fines and penalties if they sold to minors.

7. Finally, by ending prohibition, we remove the restrictions on cannabis research. This would support the development of a vast array of extremely promising cannabinoid-based medicines which have already been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of diseases including glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, nerve trauma, inflammation, MRSA, arthritis, diabetes, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's, spasticity, epilepsy, Crohn's disease, ADD, post-traumatic stress disorder, insomnia, depression, and cancer (to name a few).

See what I'm talking about?

So the next time a friend, or family member is facing the "big C", or another of the above conditions, why don't you ask them what they think.

And ask yourself this, what is the measure of 440,000 lives?

Still laughing?


* According to the FBI uniform crime report, in 2007, arrests for simple cannabis possession approached 800,000. This constitutes fully 5% of all arrests for anything and everything in the United States.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

its time to stop making the mexicans drug lords rich

Take a moment to look at the crime rates in Amesterdam and how many vilonent crimes they have.America needs to get with the times we talk about going green lets go green we can also make alternative fuels with hemp to become less independent of forieng oil. I sent my senotor in Michigan a full detailed plan how to do this and he wrote me back and said he did not support marijuna and he would not send the president mny great idea. I have done years of research and my diseal engine ran just fine on hemp oil please if you have any sense decrimalize marijuna and become the greatest presdent ever.Look what happened after probition the economy was srtiving creating more jobs and America was strong please bring back the country I lkove with a strong economy.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <i> <blockquote> <p> <address> <pre> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <br> <b>

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, Vaping, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School