Legalizing pot won’t keep ‘juices jangling’
by Nelson Price
February 01, 2014 11:48 PM | 1945 views | 3 3 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Highly motivated people are energetic and dynamic. Creativity and productivity are the outgrowth of motivation. Highly motivated people break down barriers, they overcome obstacles, they do the impossible.

Our president recently said marijuana is no worse than alcohol. Studies released since his statement show he is wrong. However, leprosy is no worse that cancer. Is good or bad, right or wrong simply a matter of comparison?

In an unscientific way, Satchel Page, the legendary baseball pitcher, may have explained a lack of motivation. He opined, “You gotta get the juices jangling.” He likely never heard the word “dopamine,” but research now shows it is a “juice” essential to the brain of motivated people.

Researchers in the United Kingdom reported in the June 29, 2013, issue of “Biological Research” using positron emission tomography to measure the distribution of chemicals throughout the brain. They found that long-term smoking of cannabis, marijuana, results in the brain producing less dopamine, a “feel good” chemical associated with motivation and reward-driven behavior.

Their study showed persons who smoke marijuana often and those who started smoking it at a young age had a lower level of dopamine in the part of the brain called the stratum. Lower levels of dopamine have been shown to contribute to lethargy and indifference.

I watched this influence on two cultures. We visited the Arab section of old Jerusalem shortly after the Six Day War. Young Arabs were dynamic, highly motivated. Their country had lost the territory in which they lived. They were energetic and highly motivated to once more take back the area. Drugs were introduced on a broad scale in the communities where these young aspiring revolutionaries lived. Over a very few years we observed their zeal quelled and these same young men become indifferent, lackadaisical.

The second culture was Bermuda. Our first of several visits to this traditionally friendly beautiful land validated their reputation for warmth and openness. Public transportation by bus and boat are the norm there. Like all Bermudans, when youth got on the bus, they would smile and greet people. It wasn’t uncommon to hear a young person with a big smile say upon getting on the bus, “Hi, everyone.” They would engage tourists in conversation and showed great respect for their elders.

Over the years, we observed the culture become distraught over the introduction of drugs on a broad scale. The youth became quiet, even sullen and unfriendly. Youth no longer made eye contact with passengers upon entering the busses. They lacked motivation. Native adults got little respect.

Another side effect of chronic use of marijuana often triggers inflammation of the brain which affects coordination and learning. Yet, another affect is chronic users tend toward schizophrenia.

The juices no longer jangled in these segments of two societies. Both are labs showing the impact of a lack of dopamine. That being true why would any culture promote the legalization of the product that reduces motivation.

The reason given is legalization would bring in money for the government. At what cost? How many young bright minds that, properly motivated, can produce more revenue by being motivated would be clouded? It is a short-sighted society that does not do everything possible to keep the juices jangling and provide every safeguard possible against that which demotivates its citizens.

The Rev. Dr. Nelson Price is pastor emeritus of Roswell Street Baptist Church.
Comments-icon Post a Comment
February 02, 2014
the greatest plant in the universe is almost free, LET FREEDOM RING!!!13

you are no doctor if you don't support marijuana, which has 1000s of safe remedies, yet you push harmful man made pharmaceuticals that kill hahaha, cute, doctor of death maybe

from 0 states to half the country, from low 20% approval to almost 70%, cali runs this planet by 2 decades, time to tie marijuana to the 2014, and 2016 elections

20 years behind us southern states, sad and scary....nobody denies freedoms like the south, nobody...even if marijuana reforms did pass the republiCANTS in charge would deny you all your freedoms, centuries of matter though, we never planned on getting your backwards brethren from day one, half the country already but not one southern state, lol...congress should be jailed for all the pain and suffering they've caused across the country and world

love and freedom forever

MARIJUANA SUPER BOWL 2014, free state vs. free state, destiny

daniel d
February 02, 2014
The pastor's opinion is just that, an opinion. Everyone has one based on their own life experiences. Something tells me the pastor has a jaded view based on his occupation and age. With him having grown up during Yellow Journalism it's easy to see why he would have his opinion. To simply think that the introduction of legalized cannabis, which has been in existence for as long as this earth, would dismantle our society is simple and close minded. There is no denying the effects on any intoxicant on a young mind whether it be alcohol, cannabis, or prescription drugs. But isn't that common sense? Haven't we learned that with other drugs?

Ending the prohibition of cannabis needs to happen. Trillions of dollars have been wasted criminalizing a social issue and there has been no discernable decrease in drug use. Why don't we give the truth a chance? Alcohol prohibition didn't worked. Cannabis prohibition doesn't work. It needs to stop.

Also, let's debunk this whole motivation thing. Drugs can exacerbate one's pre-existing laziness. To say it would demotivate an entire community is a lie. Drugs affect everyone differently. Ted Turner smokes two joints a day and is one of the most successful Americans to date. How about all the musicians and actors that use? Willy Nelson is eighty years old and still smoking!

Its time for society to realize the error of its ways and reinvent the wheel. Adults deserve a less harmful and much less toxic alternative to alcohol. Farmers deserve to grow a easily sustainable crop that can yield tens of thousands of practical industrial uses, including fuel and clothing.

Take the drug away from the back alley dealer who doesn't check ID and put it behind the counter of a store who's clerk has a camera pointed on him and who's license will be pulled and will be fined or jailed for breaking the law.

It's time to let responsible adults make their own decision on how they choose to escape reality.

Educate, Tax, Regulate, Legalize.
Kevin Foley
February 02, 2014
I talked to a husband and wife from Illinois once. Both were judges. I asked them about legalizing pot along with all recreational drugs. They were all for it. They told me their dockets were jammed up with cases involving the personal use of drugs and/or the sale of small quantities of pot.

Law enforcement wastes time and resources on pot arrests and prosecutions and have done so for more than 50 years. People will do what they are going to do regardless of its illegality and the consequences to their bodies.

Legalize it. Regulate it. Tax it.
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