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Good News: Marijuana Won't Make You Kill Yourself

What a relief:

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Smoking marijuana (also called cannabis) is unlikely to increase a person's risk of killing themselves later on, an analysis of more than three decades worth of death records on more than 50,000 Swedish military recruits suggests.

"I don't think this can be interpreted as saying, 'Well, there are no risks of using cannabis,'" Dr. Stanley Zammit of the department of psychological medicine at Cardiff University School of Medicine in the UK told Reuters Health.

Nevertheless, "we can pretty much rule out a strong effect of cannabis on long-term risk of suicide whether it's through depression or whatever," he added. [Reuters]

Well, thanks for clearing that up I guess. But was this really even necessary? I had already figured it out a long time ago based on the observation that marijuana users are some of the happiest people I know.

Of course, considering Reuters's history of wildly misconstruing and distorting marijuana research, maybe we should just be glad they at least understood the outcome of the study.
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Alcoholism on the other hand is a leading cause of suicide

Probably the leading cause. This is on the long list of reasons why laws that drive people to drink are insane and soaked in blood.

I still don't understand why this site constantly runs ads for rabidly prohibitionist website, I'm looking at it now in a side bar. To say this is an oversight is B.S. all the way. How much cash have you made from this over the half-year or longer that it's been running? You people can't click the ad and look at the site yourselves?

borden's picture

I've explained this already.

I've explained this already. First, Google sells these ads, and there's no way to know in advance which ads they are going to place on our site. They don't provide us with a list of ads that are currently running or that have run, or what we've earned from any given ad. And the ad that you see one time might not be there the next time that you load the page or when we load the page.

Second, and more importantly, when a site pops up in our ads that has a name like and comes to our attention, we do take a look at it. But we don't simply react to an objectionable sounding name, as you seem to have done. As flawed of a concept as a "drug free world" is, and as flawed as the flyers and so forth on the site may be, it's still the case that they are using persuasion -- not arrests or sanctions -- to persuade people to make certain lifestyle choices. As I've explained here -- and as you should have remembered and acknowledged, even if you disagree -- we tend to allow the prevention sites, unless they cross the line into promoting actual prohibitionist policies. Educational materials attempting to persuade people about the dangers of drugs may get misused in the service of prohibition, but in and of themselves they constitute part of a likely alternative to prohibition. We want to bring the preventionists closer and win them to our viewpoint about laws. Treating them as purely opponents and blocking them from view doesn't help to accomplish that, in my opinion.

That said, we have blocked a lot of ads from our site. As I've explained here, we are mostly concerned about the ads for drug testing and criminal background checks, services that directly hurt people. As. Far as money goes, it is likely that we've lost some revenue from blocking those, because there are a lot of them and because they are target businesses. But allowing or disallowing one particular site like has only a trivial impact on revenues.

If you have specific reasons why you feel this site should be blocked -- not just a name that you don't like -- let us know what the reasons are, show us the evidence -- e.g. you wrote last time that it's a Scientology site, but said nothing about how you know that -- and we'll take another look.

David Borden, Executive Director the Drug Reform Coordination Network
Washington, DC

Shouldn't it matter that

Shouldn't it matter that tries to persuade people with incorrect information, particularly concerning marijuana?

That said, I doubt anyone reading your site would confuse the ads as an endorsement. I think it's actually pretty amusing.

borden's picture

It does matter that a lot of

It does matter that a lot of the information is inaccurate. But we're winning the debate. The less debate, the less we win. People who find that site through ours are by definition people who know our site too. I think there is some educational value for our readers to see what is out there. And if some funds come in for reform that would otherwise go elsewhere, that's a bonus.

David Borden, Executive Director the Drug Reform Coordination Network
Washington, DC


I never wrote the site is Scientology, so someone else is also cognizant of your remiss filtering abilities. It's interesting that it could be a Scientology front group as they are infamous for doing this.
Anyway, Mr. Borden, the points in your florid response aren't bad. At least this time you admit you are unashamedly taking money from the site. That's an improvement from all of your previous hokum about not knowing anything about it, and your lily-white denials and pleas of oversight. To say, though, that the ad is just one among many that could pop up at any time is really a half-truth, in that it is your number one ad, and has been for months. I don' t really care that much, it's just annoying to see that ad all the time on this site.

No Shame in Taking Money from Prohibitionists…

…as long as it’s used to fight the prohibitionists and end the drug war.

borden's picture

Ah, it's the disgruntled

Ah, it's the disgruntled "Crackheads Gone Wild" guy, I recognize your writing style.

Anyway, it's not the number one ad on the site -- by far it's not, I actually don't see it that often -- and that is only one of many lies you have told to justify your attacks. Don't expect more of them to be left up here -- hate is not what we're about here, and we don't need yours.

As far as the ad in question goes, if anyone has actual specific information to provide about the site that in light of my explanation provided here could tilt us toward blocking their ads, let me know.

David Borden, Executive Director the Drug Reform Coordination Network
Washington, DC

What a fricking waste of money

Was there ever the slightest reason to think cannabis use did lead to suicide, even under conditions of persecution and prohibition caused financial stress? The idiot mentality that funded this is the same idiot mentality that's suppressed research into medicinal cannabis, and its chemical components, for 70+ years and counting.

Well it's nice to know.

Well it's nice to know. Considering as there are some risks of psychological problems from weed for some people, I do think it's worth a look. But now we know. Like the lung cancer studies that they conducted for decades, and kept repeating in disbelief, it turned out it doesn't cause it. To me, if anyone is willing to conduct any study on marijuana that is well done and truly scientific, then let them do it. All the better if they keep finding out about harms weed doesn't cause. It would be nice to see some studies about the benefits of weed, though. The government doesn't allow too many of those.

It wound up serving a useful purpose, that's true

The opposite of the one it's sponsors were hoping for. Maybe I shouldn't complain. But in terms of the competition for research $, the absence of anecdotal evidence to suggest the notion of an actual issue with cannabis and suicide means there were so many more pressing needs for research funding. So much worthy research can't get funding and this only got funded because drug warriors were hoping they'd get lucky. As usual, they didn't think of how it could turn out badly for them, they're still convinced 'reefer madness' got it right.

Marijuana Use Does Not Cause Earth’s Moon to Split in Half

The utility of a fact is in what it correctly declares to be impossible, or at least limitlessly improbable.  And there’s much that can be surmised in reviewing previous facts, such as those noted in a 19th century scientific paper that indicated cannabis use could relieve symptoms of depression.

Replications of studies and experiments are de rigueur in science.  At least with the new publication, no prohibitionist can claim pot leads to suicide (as they will) without being more easily rebuked.  This is important, since facts seem to mean little or nothing to those who suffer from the malady of prohibitionism.


I'll say one thing good about the drugfreeworld site

They consider alcohol as a drug. But that raises the question of how they compare the dangers of alcohol vs. cannabis, so that's what I asked them, in a nicely barbed way I thought. I don't expect to get a substantive reply though, I don't think they are about debating or discussing this. But maybe they'll surprise me. I'd say cannabis and alcohol are both herbs when used appropriately.

Cannabis users are more

Cannabis users are more likely to become suicidal due to their lives being ruined by the criminal justice system because of Prohibition than any effect of cannabis.

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