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Marijuana is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink? Paperback – August 24, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-1603581448 ISBN-10: 1603581448 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing; 1 edition (August 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603581448
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603581448
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 5.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (103 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #732,784 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"In this thoroughly documented account, Fox, Armentano, and Tvert have performed a public service. They have pulled the sheet off the lie that gave us marijuana prohibition. In truth, it turns out 'The Devil Weed' is safer than alcohol. If that shocks you, you better read this book. It could be a game changer."--Mike Gray, author of Drug Crazy: How We Got into This Mess & How We Can get Out



"As the nation undergoes a shift in its thinking about drug policy, Marijuana is Safer offers a timely and forceful challenge to marijuana criminalization. Anyone with an interest in drug policy, whatever their perspective, should read this important work."--Alex Kreit, Director of the Center for Law and Social Justice, Thomas Jefferson School of Law



"The follies of marijuana prohibition have never been laid bare with more erudition and plain common sense. Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink? is a book every citizen needs to read, and a question we all have to raise our voices to ask."--Barbara Ehrenreich, bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America and This Land Is Their Land: Reports from a Divided Nation



"As one who has been entrusted with maintaining the public's safety, I strongly believe--and most people agree--that our laws should punish people who do harm to others. But by banning the use of marijuana and punishing individuals who merely possess the substance, it is difficult to see what harm we are trying to prevent. From my own work and the experiences of other members of the law enforcement community, it is abundantly clear that marijuana is rarely, if ever, the cause of disruptive or violent behavior. That marijuana causes very little social harm is reason enough in a free society to legalize it for adults. But as Steve, Paul, and Mason so brilliantly demonstrate in this book, an even more persuasive reason is that by prohibiting marijuana we are steering people toward a substance that far too many people already abuse, namely alcohol."--Norm Stamper, former Chief of the Seattle Police Department



"Our current draconian laws prohibiting the use of marijuana by responsible adults are doubly flawed. Not only does such prohibition violate fundamental freedoms but also, as this book documents, it undermines personal health and public safety. Regardless of your views on the civil liberties issues, this book should convince you of another compelling justification for marijuana law reform: that it will promote health and safety for all of us, including our nation's children."--Nadine Strossen, former President, American Civil Liberties Union, and Professor of Law, New York Law School



"I have always maintained that the legalization of marijuana would lead to an overall drop in substance abuse in this country. In particular, the option of legal marijuana use, as an alternative to the death and violence associated with alcohol use, would be a welcome societal change. Surprisingly, though, there has never been a book dedicated to conveying this basic idea to the public. But with Marijuana is Safer, now there is. Kudos to Fox, Armentano, and Tvert for their remarkably insightful and important book."--Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico



"I took great pride in my performance on and off the field, and often questioned why our culture embraces alcohol while simultaneously stigmatizing those who choose to consume a less harmful alternative, marijuana. Marijuana Is Safer makes an irrefutable case for liberating current cannabis policy by comparing and contrasting its use with that of alcohol. This outstanding book makes it clear that it is inconsistent, both legally and socially, for our laws to punish adults who make the 'safer' choice."--Mark Stepnoski, five-time NFL Pro Bowler and two-time Superbowl champion with the Dallas Cowboys



"Finally, a book that confronts the half-baked hallucinations of a drug policy gone mad. By adroitly juxtaposing the harms of marijuana and alcohol, the book shows just how badly America has overdosed on senselessly stupid marijuana propaganda and the prohibition laws it produced. If you are one of the millions of Americans who support keeping marijuana illegal but enjoy a good beer, glass of wine or cocktail now and then, I suggest you read Marijuana is Safer, rehab your mind, and get high on the facts. If, on the other hand, you already believe our marijuana laws are illogical, this book will give you hope that change is in the air--and show you how you can do your part to push it along."--David Sirota, nationally syndicated columnist and bestselling author of The Uprising and Hostile Takeover



"Marijuana Is Safer is both informative and timely. It explains the effects and actions of marijuana upon the body in plain and easily understandable terms. Most importantly, it shows the reader why the use of marijuana is much safer than the use of many if not most legal substances, including over the counter medications, tobacco, and most certainly alcohol. As a physician and public health educator, I highly recommend this book."--Gregory T. Carter, M.D., M.S., Clinical Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine



"Culture and law feel, at times, impossible to change; and then suddenly we find ourselves in a whole new place. America smokes a lot of pot, America drinks a lot of booze, and pot has not always been outlawed - it stands to reason that law and culture will change again. This book seems to herald that change is now upon us. It is smart and clear and feels like common sense. Pot and drink are two drugs people commonly use and one causes a good deal more violence and tragedy. Let's at least legalize the other one. It's an excellent argument. But don't just take my word for it-read the book."--Jennifer Michael Hecht, PhD, author of The Happiness Myth



"Marijuana Is Safer provides an informative, enjoyable, comprehensive look at all aspects of the plant from the cellular to the societal. Readers who are new to the topic will find the pithy summaries of this complex literature easy to follow. Experts will welcome the up-to-the-minute references to the latest work on a vast range of topics. Even the most devoted prohibitionists will soon find themselves scratching their heads as they learn the history and rationale behind current laws. Everyone will finish the text convinced that current policies need a thorough and immediate re-examination."--Mitch Earleywine, PhD, author of Understanding Marijuana and editor of Pot Politics



"Marijuana Is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink? is the most extensive and up-to-date book I've ever read regarding adults' relationship with the cannabis plant. If you've ever questioned whether marijuana is an objectively safer alternative to alcohol, this book has the answers. As challenging as its conclusion may be to the political majority, this collection of thought-provoking facts cannot be ignored."--Rob Van Dam, former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)Heavyweight Champion and host of robvandam.com and RVDTV



"You'd think that the definitive case against prohibition of alcohol or other drugs had been made by now. But Steve Fox, Paul Armentano, and Mason Tvert offer a provocative new argument: that marijuana is actually safer to use than alcohol, so it's doubly dumb to ban the drug that's actually safer. Abstemious folks like myself may be surprised to hear that, but you'll find some solid evidence in this book."--David Boaz, Executive Vice President of the Cato Institute, and author of Libertarianism: A Primer and The Politics of Freedom

About the Author

Steve Fox is the Director of State Campaigns for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), the nation's largest organization dedicated to reforming marijuana laws. From 2002-2005, he lobbied Congress as MPP's Director of Government Relations. He cofounded Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER) in 2005 and has helped guide its operations since its inception. He is a graduate of Tufts University and Boston College Law School and currently lives in Maryland with his wife and two daughters. You can visit SAFER online at www.saferchoice.org.



Paul Armentano is the deputy director of NORML (The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws) and the NORML Foundation. A recognized national expert in marijuana policy, health, and pharmacology, he has spoken at dozens of national conferences and legal seminars and has testified before state legislatures and federal agencies. He appears regularly on Drew Pinsky's nationally syndicated radio show, Dr. Drew Live, and his work has appeared in over 500 publications. Armentano is the 2008 recipient of the Project Censored Real News Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism. He currently lives in California with his wife and son. You can visit the NORML Foundation online at norml.org.



Mason Tvert is the cofounder and executive director of Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation (SAFER) and the SAFER Voter Education Fund. He appears frequently in the news and travels the country promoting the "Marijuana Is Safer Than Alcohol" message. He resides in Denver, where he serves on the city's Marijuana Policy Review Panel, appointed by Mayor John W. Hickenlooper. Read Mason's blog on The Huffington Post at www.huffingtonpost.com/mason-tvert.


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Customer Reviews

I would highly recommend this book - its a quick, easy, and very interesting read.
J. Le-Ogier
This book succinctly sums-up the truth behind the lies and clearly shows how cannabis (marijuana) is much safer than alcohol.
A. Moore
Get your head out of the sand, read this book and pass it on to as many people as you can.
David Verdugo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

109 of 112 people found the following review helpful By Trogo on August 11, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is one of the best books on marijuana I have read in a long time. And it has come out at the best time possible. I encourage everyone to read this book! It's about time that a truly serious discussion is brought up about marijuana, and "Marijuana is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink?", provides enough evidence to oppose any prohibition supporter arguments. Prohibition is losing, and it should be...it's about time!
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69 of 74 people found the following review helpful By Matthew D. Kinslow on August 19, 2009
Format: Paperback
I read the review that someone wrote and gave this book 1 star... sure it is gonna be biased... sure a lot of headies drink... but that's not the point of the book... the point of the book is to get out and educate the mass of people that think pot is some kind of demon that will tear out your soul and leave you an empty shell of a person... a person that will go out and rape, steal, and do whatever it is to get the herb... which.. if you know any pot smoker is entirely false... sure pot isn't perfect... and it's not totally safe... but you CANNOT tell me it's not safer than drinking... I just hope people will read this book and understand that people are going to prison, losing their lives, breaking up families, tearing this nation apart for something that is FAR less harmful than alcohol... give peace a chance!
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71 of 78 people found the following review helpful By Chris Smith on August 7, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is Absolutely Fantastic! This should be a real eye opener for anyone who is still hypnotized by "Reefer Madness". This book Exposes the Lies, Racism and false propaganda that is responsible for much of today's crime and gang problems, responsible for the extreme petroleum era damage to our earth, and the ruining or ending the lives of 100's of Millions of People Worldwide.
This book is a MUST Read for Everyone in America!
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By diljs VINE VOICE on November 28, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Disclaimer: I personally don't use marijuana, and I'm not exceptionally liberal in my political viewpoints. I use alcohol in moderation, and my experience is likely similar to what a "normal" American would have after reading this book.

I found the premise of this book very interesting. For a while the "war" on marijuana has seemed increasingly more nonsensical when I look at it from a rational standpoint. Unfortunately advocates for legalization are typically dismissed as druggies and useless members of society. Marijuana is Safer presents the arguments against marijuana in a very intellectual and scientific way, by comparing it to alcohol and the differences in handling of the two substances.

The first few chapters compare marijuana directly to alcohol. Alcohol use is legal above a certain age in this country, while marijuana is banned at all ages (with the exception of medical use in some states). Yet alcohol use is strongly correlated with violence, crime, and general aggressive behavior, while marijuana hasn't be linked definitively to any of these. Alcohol in excess leads to significant health problems over time and overconsumption can kill, while the worst marijuana in excess can do is put the user to sleep. Alcohol is also highly addictive, while claims that pot are addictive have been highly exaggerated. In fact, Fox and his co-authors present a very good case, backed up by multiple studies, that alcohol is significantly more dangerous than marijuana. They do not downplay the risks of marijuana use, but present it as a reasonable alternative to alcohol.

The next few chapters focus on the history of Marijuana prohibition. Key individuals and industries profited and have continued to profit from the banning of marijuana usage.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Gregory T. Carter on August 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
Paul Armentano and colleagues have written an excellent and highly informative book that does what has need to be done for some time now, i.e.; compare the pros and cons of marijuana and alcohol. The book does a great job of clearly delineating the relative risk, both medical and legal of these two popular recreational substances. After doing this, they then address the elephant in the room and tackle why our society continues to punish responsible adults who make the rational, safer choice of using marijuana instead of alcohol. Through an objective examination of the two drugs, the book shows that only real valid argument against marijuana is ingrained social prejudice. Howver that is a ridiculous way to run public policy. Yet the reality is that, given our ongoing economic crisis, marijuana may be one of our ways out. Legalizing marijuana would allow the government to tax it and raise billions of dollars in revenue. Given that tobacco companies face ever growing restrictions, marijuana may be their next cash crop, not to mention the money that could be made with hemp products in general, including fiber for clothing, oils and grains for nutrition (and maybe even green energy). This book is hopefully a big step in educating the public and the government so that may be one day reason will prevail and our government will adopt a common sense, rationally driven policy regarding marijuana.

I highly recommend reading "Marijuana is Safer...". It is the right book, published at the right time. Kudos to these authors.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By K. Johnson VINE VOICE on August 20, 2009
Format: Paperback
"Marijuana is safer" is a well-timed and needed book with information that more of the American public should be aware of. I don't smoke, but know many people that do of different ages, nationalities, and professional backgrounds. With Marijuana being so common around the world, I've often wondered why the US government makes such a concerted effort to quash not only Marijuana, but also hemp. Both have many medicinal, practical and environmental uses.

"Marijuana is safer," by Steve Fox, Paul Armentano, Mason Tvert, and Norm Stamper (a former Police Chief), compares and contrasts the effects of pot and alcohol and honestly asks why our society and legal system treats these substances so differently. Alcohol has been statistically proven decade after decade to be a factor in serious crimes such as rape, assault, fatal car accidents, murder, and manslaughter.

Not only does US government anti-marijuana propaganda campaign promote false information on the dangers of pot, it also neglects to report the positive scientific and medical studies about Marijuana in regards to debilitating and life-threatening diseases.

Although Marijuana has been used for thousands of years, the history of the government's campaign began approximately 80 years ago.
The American government began a propaganda campaign in the 1930s with the government produced "Reefer Madness" films. Misinformation in these propaganda films were also placed on banners and leaflets in major cities: the false war against Marijuana began, and lasted until just a couple of years ago.

The American public education system also contributed to the myths, draconian laws, and false hysteria about this substance.
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