Well. I might be, by my parents; one of those $75 kits or something in that sort. I really just wish I could show my parents how unharmful marijuana really is. I've looked up so many facts & information on Wikipedia & NORML. I wish I could express to them how nice of a thing chilling & smoking with friends is. I want them to know that you are not in a risk tasking mood, that you enjoy & think & do whatever. I hate the false information society has given us about this plant. I mean, when high...you are basically in your right state of mind, you know right from wrong, you don't want to fly out the window or do something crazy. I wish my parents knew the difference about drugs & how every drug isn't like meth of cocaine. Weed is almost in it's own category. It's amazing. If I could, I would show them this: MARIJUANA Since its origin in the 1950s, the "gateway drug" theory, has been one of the central pillars of marijuana drug policy in the United States, but this has not been proven. Those who subscribe to this theory, which has since spread throughout the world, argue that cannabis use may lead one down the path of drug addiction, and should therefore be treated as a serious matter. Most researchers conclude that this model of behavior has little basis in fact, though, others have found truth in these claims. Despite the conflicting results of these studies, many researchers agree that the illegal status of cannabis has a direct connection to the "gateway theory". The reasoning goes that cannabis users are more likely than non-users to place themselves in situations where other illicit substances are being used. In order to acquire cannabis they are likely to become acquainted with people who use or sell other more stigmatized drugs such as cocaine or heroin, which may lead to serious addictions. Using this philosophy, activities such as smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol may also be regarded as having a gateway effect on youth. Indeed, certain studies have shown that tobacco smoking is a better predictor of concurrent illicit drug use than smoking cannabis. Keeping this argument in mind, certain activist groups such as NORML contend that legalizing cannabis would substantially reduce the use of other drugs by taking the distribution of marijuana out of the hands of criminals, and regulating it in a similar manner to alcohol or tobacco. A study published in The Lancet 24 March 2007 finds that cannabis is both less harmful and less addictive than either alcohol or tobacco. Twenty drugs were assigned a risk from 0 to 3. Cannabis was ranked 17th out of 20 for harmfulness, while alcohol and tobacco were ranked 11th and 14th respectively. There have been no reported deaths or permanent injuries sustained as a result of a marijuana overdose. It is practically impossible to overdose on marijuana, as the user would certainly either fall asleep or otherwise become incapacitated from the effects of the drug before being able to consume enough THC to be mortally toxic. Unlike tobacco, cannabis has not been shown to cause emphysema, lung cancer, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Other studies have suggested that cannabis use by expectant mothers does not appear to cause birth defects or developmental delays in their newborn children. According to a United Kingdom government report, using cannabis is less dangerous than both tobacco and alcohol in social harms, physical harm and addiction. Socially deviant behavior may be found more frequently in individuals of the criminal justice system compared to those in the general population, including non users. In response, independent studies of college students have shown that there was no difference in grade point average, and achievement, between marijuana users and nonusers, but the users had a little more difficulty deciding on career goals, and a smaller number were seeking advanced professional degrees. Laboratory studies of the relationship between motivation and marijuana outside of the classroom, where volunteers worked on operant tasks for a wage representing a working world model, also fail to distinguish a noticeable difference between users and non users. At least one study has shown a decrease in depression in cannabis users A December 2006 study by the American Psychiatric Association challenges these findings. A 12 year study on 214 boys from ages 10-12 showed that adolescents who used marijuana prior to using other drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, were no more likely to develop a substance abuse disorder than other subjects in the study. "This evidence supports what's known as the common liability model ... [which] states [that] the likelihood that someone will transition to the use of illegal drugs is determined not by the preceding use of a particular drug, but instead by the user's individual tendencies and environmental circumstances," investigators stated in a press release. They added, "The emphasis on the drugs themselves, rather than other, more important factors that shape a person's behavior, has been detrimental to drug policy and prevention programs." Cannabis smoke contains numerous carcinogens;[ however, scientific studies have failed to show higher cancer rates in cannabis smokers. A study published in 2006 by Donald Tashkin of the University of California, Los Angeles, the largest study of its kind, concluded there is no link between smoking cannabis and lung cancer. A study published in 2006 on a large population sample (1,200 people with lung, neck, or head cancer, and a matching group of 1,040 without cancer) failed to positively correlate a lung cancer risk. The results indicated a slight negative correlation between long and short-term cannabis use and cancer, suggesting a possible therapeutic effect. Cellular studies and even some studies in animal models suggest that THC has antitumor properties, either by encouraging programmed cell death of genetically damaged cells that can become cancerous, or by restricting the development of the blood supply that feeds tumors. Prior, a 1997 study examining the records of 64,855 Kaiser patients (14,033 of whom identified themselves as current smokers), also found no positive correlation between cannabis use and cancer. A Research Triangle Institute study concluded that THC, a dilative agent, may help cleanse the lungs by dilating the bronchi, and could actively reduce the instance of tumors. Additionally, a study by Rosenblatt et al. found no association between marijuana use and the development of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. There are several main obstacles to determining the effect of cannabis use on driving: cannabis use is most common in a demographic that is already vulnerable for traffic accidents; dangerous drivers who tested positive for THC often test positive for alcohol as well; there are no figures or estimates available as a "base-line," for instance, how many cannabis users drive safely without incidents; and there are many ethical and legal obstacles impeding research on this topic. The effects of cannabis on laboratory-based tasks show clear impairment with respect to tracking ability, attention, and other tasks depending on the dose administered. These effects however, are not as pronounced on real world tasks, like driving or simulator tasks. Both simulation and road trials generally find that driving behavior shortly after consumption of larger doses of cannabis results in: a more cautious driving style; increased variability in lane position (and headway); and longer decision times. Whereas these results indicate a 'change' from normal conditions, they do not necessarily reflect 'impairment' in terms of performance effectiveness since few studies report increased accident risk. However, the results do suggest 'impairment' in terms of performance efficiency given that some of these behaviors may limit the available resources to cope with any additional, unexpected or high demand, events. Indeed, compensatory effort can be invoked to offset impairment in the driving task. Subjects under cannabis treatment appear to perceive that they are impaired and can compensate, for example, by not overtaking, by slowing down and by focusing their attention when they know a response will be required. This compensatory effort may be one reason for the failure to implicate cannabis consumption as an accident risk factor. However, this claim is difficult to substantiate in the absence of any substantial epidemiological estimates of accident risk. ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/04/070417193338.htm ::: The active ingredient in marijuana cuts tumor growth in common lung cancer in half and significantly reduces the ability of the cancer to spread, say researchers at Harvard University who tested the chemical in both lab and mouse studies. They say this is the first set of experiments to show that the compound, Delta-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), inhibits EGF-induced growth and migration in epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) expressing non-small cell lung cancer cell lines. Lung cancers that over-express EGFR are usually highly aggressive and resistant to chemotherapy. THC that targets cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2 is similar in function to endocannabinoids, which are cannabinoids that are naturally produced in the body and activate these receptors. The researchers suggest that THC or other designer agents that activate these receptors might be used in a targeted fashion to treat lung cancer. "The beauty of this study is that we are showing that a substance of abuse, if used prudently, may offer a new road to therapy against lung cancer," said Anju Preet, Ph.D., a researcher in the Division of Experimental Medicine. Acting through cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2, endocannabinoids (as well as THC) are thought to play a role in variety of biological functions, including pain and anxiety control, and inflammation. Although a medical derivative of THC, known as Marinol, has been approved for use as an appetite stimulant for cancer patients, and a small number of U.S. states allow use of medical marijuana to treat the same side effect, few studies have shown that THC might have anti-tumor activity, Preet says. The only clinical trial testing THC as a treatment against cancer growth was a recently completed British pilot study in human glioblastoma. In the present study, the researchers first demonstrated that two different lung cancer cell lines as well as patient lung tumor samples express CB1 and CB2, and that non-toxic doses of THC inhibited growth and spread in the cell lines. "When the cells are pretreated with THC, they have less EGFR stimulated invasion as measured by various in-vitro assays," Preet said. Then, for three weeks, researchers injected standard doses of THC into mice that had been implanted with human lung cancer cells, and found that tumors were reduced in size and weight by about 50 percent in treated animals compared to a control group. There was also about a 60 percent reduction in cancer lesions on the lungs in these mice as well as a significant reduction in protein markers associated with cancer progression, Preet says. Although the researchers do not know why THC inhibits tumor growth, they say the substance could be activating molecules that arrest the cell cycle. They speculate that THC may also interfere with angiogenesis and vascularization, which promotes cancer growth. Preet says much work is needed to clarify the pathway by which THC functions, and cautions that some animal studies have shown that THC can stimulate some cancers. "THC offers some promise, but we have a long way to go before we know what its potential is," she said.