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This King Solomon’s grave narrative, has immortalised cannabis within the Rastafarian religion, as a medium in their religious ceremonies. Having said that, Rastafarians would argue, with some justification, the present legal status of cannabis, is worship restrictive,
That said, with my formative years having been Rastafarian associated,
That said, scrutiny of the cannabis advocates, cannot be disaffiliated from their tunnel vision campaign. For the Rastafarian communities are plague with numerous afflictions, yet the Rastafari Council is of the conviction, decriminalisation of weed is paramount. Which leads to the logical question, what’s the rational prioritising such an undertaking, in an environment of pervasive poverty. As a matter of fact, as a non-Rastafarian father, if such circumstances I faced, instinctive would be my priory, in removing impediments to my children’s betterment.
Having said that, cannabis use isn’t limited to our 83,000sq miles, for there are an estimated 192 million users worldwide, with young Black males and the uneducated overrepresented,
1. Associated with higher schools failure rates
2. Associated with decreased extracurricular activities engagement.
3. Associated with a dislike of school
What’s more, cannabis users are more likely to be unemployed, or to be from the lower income brackets. Moreover, cannabis users are more likely to have had prior contact with the Criminal Justice System, even as adolescence with violent or illegal behaviour, are twice as likely to be cannabis users. Further, cigarette smokers and alcohol drinkers are more likely than nonsmokers and nondrinkers to use cannabis.
But the association between cannabis use and mental health have long been questioned, nonetheless recent studies have established associations or causations.
– Cannabis users are more likely to be users of alcohol, tobacco, heroin, prescription stimulants, sedatives and hallucinogens.
– Cannabis users are more likely to have mood disorders eg depression, bipolar etc.
– There is substantial association between cannabis use and schizophrenia; where some experts believe that early cannabis use is a causal factor in developing schizophrenia.
-There is substantial association between anxiety disorders and cannabis use, with an analysis of 31studies, involving 112,000 participants in 10 countries, confirming same.
– Multiple studies have found associations being cannabis use and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Notably, a survey of 36,309 United States adults, found a high prevalence of current cannabis use, among those with current PTSD.
– Additionally, studies of large unselected populations, found a 20-30% association between Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder(ADHD) and cannabis use.
– Significantly, there is substantial association between cannabis use and several personality disorders, especially antisocial and obsessive compulsive personality disorders.Which was evidenced in a study of 36,309 American adults, reporting high rates of current personality disorder in current cannabis users. In fact, lifetime cannabis users are 10-fold more likely to have lifetime antisocial personality disorder, than those without cannabis use. With lifetime cannabis users being twice as likely to have lifetime childhood conduct disorder, and seven times more likely to have lifetime adult antisocial behaviour.
What’s more, studies on adolescents cannabis user, have established strong associations between lower educational attainment and increased use of other drugs. Thus, with worldwide increased
However, this shan’t be ignored- Rastafarians are suffocating in depressive poverty, with little scope for social mobility. In fact, and I stand corrected, the very Parliament they held all hopes, is without a Rastafarian Parliamentarian,
But Leon Saul certainly counted his spliffs before they were rolled, evidenced in his subjugation to Anil Nandlall, as the “Spoiler.” That said, PPP certainly made them political pawns, promising the unscientific, before reducing decriminalisation to smoke and ashes. However, the alternatives were certainly worse, since a decriminalised or worse yet legalised cannabis, would’ve delivered dire consequences. Thus, as the newly emancipated cannabis would’ve gone up in smoke, more pressing Rastafarian issues would’ve also gone up smoke. For economic independence would’ve gone up in smoke. Children’s education Education would’ve have gone up in smoke. Addressing teenage pregnancies would’ve gone up in smoke. Alleviating school dropouts would’ve gone up in smoke. Reducing crime in their communities would’ve gone up in smoke. Reducing psychological burden would’ve gone up in smoke. Reducing stigmatisation and stereotyping would’ve gone up in smoke. Routes to social mobility would’ve gone up in smoke.
Thus the question. Is it worth it? Is it really worth it?