Ethical consciousness and cannabis

Date: 05.03.2018

''We do not live in an ideal society, so the society can not rely on the high ethical awareness of all its individuals and completely unleash all the customs associated with the production and use of cannabis products.''


Bernard Goršak, Ph.D.
Biologist, ecologist, Alma Mater Europaea, Maribor

The starting point for this reflection on ethical aspects and the conditions of broader social acceptance of the production and processing of cannabis products, and the related implementation of relevant legislation, is the recognition that an individual who is confronted with the opportunity of earning money, will very often succumb to this temptation.

We do not live in an ideal society, so the society can not rely on the high ethical awareness of all its individuals and completely unleash all the customs associated with the production and use of cannabis products. Users (and hence also permanent customers / buyers) of alcohol, tobacco, pills, THC and similar substances that cause different kind of addictions have always existed and will. And individuals or organizations that want to exploit this human weakness will also continue to exist. Therefore, the society can not do better then to act according to the rule “better safe then sorry”. But this does not change the fact that the question of wide free sale of cannabis products is better addressed by the principle of small steps rather than large jumps. Of course growers and processors could exercise more patience on this journey if they could fully trust the authorities and decision maker, not to be playing dual roles; on the one hand, they are loudly advocating efforts for the well-being of all citizens (where gradual introduction of cannabis products should also be included); but on the other hand, they want to satisfy (again completely egoistic) interests of large companies and multinationals.

But to return to the essence of things. Had i not seen it with my own eyes, I would have not believed it: someone, compared to whom I look small (and I'm a heavyweight), has just after a few puffs of a cigarette, that was mixed with little cannabis, in an instant lost his consciousness for a few minutes and became completely pale. I also witnessed someone who smoked a whole cannabis cigarette with pure cannabis, but there were no noticeable changes in his behavior. So a small amount of THC may have a very potent effects on some organisms. The resin of cannabis with a relatively high proportion of active substances has had a very positive effect on the chronic inflammation of the bladder of a friend and peer, with no noticeable negative consequences. With these examples, I just wish to highlight that the benefits (and adverse effects) of cannabis products manifest differently for different people, and that, in my opinion, it is necessary to justify how and when to apply a cannabis product for each individual and not as generalized formula.

So far, I have not even mentioned the other useful cannabis products, such as flour, paper, clothing, insulating material and similar. These, and much more, is very transparently and interestingly described by the author of the blog, whose link I attach below *. I found this blog when I was searching for information on the amount of cannabis crops in the past, since I already knew that there were many hectares of land sawed with this ancient culture. For my parents, during their youth, it was quite normal to see filed with sawed hemp. But some of the data surprised even me: after the Second World War, Yugoslavia was growing a 25% of all cannabis crops in Europe! It is too bad that this blog does not list references, because this would be a great expert contribution to the argumentation why we need to adoption and implement comprehensive legislation on the cultivation and processing of cannabis and the marketing of cannabis products.

It would be naive to think that common sense will prevail very soon, and that our society will continuously set forth on the journey - albeit with small steps - adopting fully transparent, open and comprehensive legislation in this field, which is certainly not influenced by the interests of large capital .That what is good for humans, nature, is secondary for decision makers and rulers of this world; positive consequences, if any, are often only a derivative, a by-product, of other primary interests. It sounds rather cynical, but today's world confirms that this is our reality: the purely egoistic interests of plutocrats (the only real rulers through all human history) can, through politics, parliament, legislation and other "props of democracy" be camouflaged as public interests that are "for the greater good". We can not find almost anything that, if we dig deeply enough, does not at its basis, reveal the purely egoistic interests of individuals within the various "elites".

The only thing remaining is that it is continued, as is already done: raising awareness, education, promotion, research, networking and lobbying with those responsible. Thus, as Niebuhr's famous prayer says, "God, give me peace, to accept what I can not change, the courage to change what needs to be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish between the two."


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