Lutherville Drug Expert Blasts Legalizing Marijuana Proposal

Mike Gimbel wants to know if it's a case of a case of hypocrisy or insanity.

Mike Gimbel
Former Baltimore County Drug Czar

It has come to my attention that the Maryland Legislature will be voting on a bill to ban the sale of “synthetic pot," often referred to as “spice or K-2." 

In itself this is not a bad idea since the use of synthetic pot has increased by our youth and many are ending up in emergency rooms due to the effects of these dangerous chemicals.  

Whether or not this will solve the synthetic drug problem is questionable since the chemist’s have been one step ahead of enforcement by changing the chemical compounds, thus avoiding the new laws.

But it’s still worth the effort.     

What I don’t understand is the hypocrisy of the Maryland State Legislature, especially Del. Curt Anderson from Baltimore City who has introduced legislation to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.  

Do you have an informed opinion? Consider starting your own blog.

First, I don’t think a delegate representing a city that has been called the “heroin capital of the nation," has liquor stores on just about every corner and has a high crime rate directly associated to drug use, should be advocating legalizing any drug.    

But let’s look at the hypocrisy.   

The three drugs that kill more Americans are cigarettes, alcohol and prescription drugs, all legal and easy to obtain.  So why in the world would we every want to legalize another drug that clearly impairs the user and most likely causes more lung damage & cancer than cigarettes.

What our legislators need to focus on is the desperate need for additional drug and alcohol treatment programs throughout the state of Maryland.  Not only will this saves lives but will also reduce violence and other crime.

Buck Harmon February 24, 2013 at 02:21 PM
Until our perceived leadership can begin to lead by example, the problems faced regarding drug abuse, (including legal ) will continue to worsen...enforcement is not working, as it only seems to burden the correction institution with massive taxpayer expense that quite possibly could be the reason for the lack of funding needed to provide recovery and education programs. If the folks at the helm can't get their collective asses together how will any new law make a difference one way or the other ?
Kevin Sterling February 24, 2013 at 05:03 PM
Smoking is not required to gain the benefits of cannabis, whether for medicinal need or just for enjoyment. Any potential health hazards due to smoking are not the hazards of cannabis, but of smoking.

 Vaporization is proven safe,  less expensive, and preferred by patients over smoking by a margin of 7:1 in peer reviewed research published in 2007. 
 http://www.cmcr.ucsd.edu/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=149:vaporization-as-a-qsmokelessq-cannabis-delivery-system&catid=41:research-studies&Itemid=135 Hypocrisy? Look in the mirror Mr. Gimbel. The war on (some) drugs is built on a platform consisting of nothing other than bald faced lies, half truths, and hysterical rhetoric. It's time to end the madness.
Kevin Sterling February 24, 2013 at 05:03 PM
Cannabis is not synthetic cannabis, not by a long shot. Let's not forget that synthetic cannabis is an unanticipated consequence of the epic, proven failure of public policy that we call the war on (some) drugs. Mr. Gimbel is advocating more of the same behavior that delivered synthetic cannabinoids to our children. The University of Michigan's Monitoring the Future survey tells us that the rate youth use of drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco in the United States is at or near 30 year lows. Conversely, that same data tells us that the rate of youth use of cannabis is at 30 year highs. Doesn't anyone care about the children? I don't know, but it's plain to see that Mr. Gimbel does not.
wm97 February 24, 2013 at 10:01 PM
In 1973, President Nixon's US National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse completed the largest study of the drug laws ever done. At the end of their study, they said that the real drug problem was not marijuana, or heroin, or cocaine. The real drug problem, they said, was the ignorance of our public officials who had never bothered to read the most basic research. Mike Gimbel proves that what they said is still true. He is the former Baltimore County Drug Czar and I would bet that he has never laid eyes on that research. In fact, it is apparent that he isn't even aware that such research exists. That's the real drug problem - "Drug Czars" who couldn't pass the first basic quiz in a class on drug policy. In the interests of helping out the woefully ignorant, Mike Gimbel can find the full text of Nixon's commission at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/Library/studies/nc/ncmenu.htm Just FYI, Mike, it is the largest study of laws ever done and it doesn't agree with you. In case you were wondering about other studies, you can find the full text of every other major government commission on the subject from around the world over the last 100 years at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer under Major Studies of Drugs and Drug Policy. Not one of those agrees with Mike Gimble, either.
wm97 February 24, 2013 at 10:07 PM
Mike obviously never read anything on this subject -- despite his grand title, so let's start with some simple stuff. Why was marijuana outlawed in the first place? Mj was originally outlawed for two major reasons. The first was because "All Mexicans are crazy and marijuana is what makes them crazy." The second was the fear that heroin addiction would lead to the use of marijuana - exactly the opposite of the modern "gateway" idea. At the hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, the representative of the American Medical Association said there was no evidence that marijuana was a dangerous drug and no reason for the law. In response, the committee told him to shut up and leave. The only other "expert" to testify was James C. Munch, a psychologist. His sole claim to fame was that he had injected mj directly into the brains of 300 dogs and two of them died. He said he didn't know what to conclude from this, because he wasn't a dog psychologist. He also testified in court, under oath, that mj could make your fangs grow six inches long and drip with blood and, when he tried it, it turned him into a bat. Mr. Munch was the only "expert" in the US who thought mj should be illegal, so he was appointed US Official Expert on marijuana, where he served, and guided policy, for 25 years. The laws were absolute lunacy from Day One. See the short history at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/History/whiteb1.htm
wm97 February 24, 2013 at 10:14 PM
Hey Mike, tell us all what you think are the major reasons that marijuana had to be outlawed. Was it the awful effect it has on the degenerate races? Was it the fact that it causes diarrhea? Or how about that unnamed high school girl who knew another girl who smoked a joint with her boyfriend and they went so crazy that they eloped and got married? In case you aren't up to date on these things as reasons for marijuana prohibition, you can find them all in the full transcripts of the congressional hearings for the Marihuana Tax Act at http://druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/taxact/taxact.htm You really don't appear to be up to date on this subject, so maybe you better call some of the major prohibition organizations and ask them about trying to advance this argument on the internet. Just in case you were wondering, no prohibitionist has won this argument on the internet in about twenty years. They just wind up looking like fools when they try. The simple reason is that it always turns out that they really have no clue about the subject.
Gustavo Picciuto February 25, 2013 at 03:58 AM
"..So why in the world would we every want to legalize another drug that clearly impairs the user and most likely causes more lung damage & cancer than cigarettes.." I don't see it as adding another intoxicant, I see it as adding a safe alternative. If smoking marijuana causer cancer, where are the bodies? Millions of people smoke marijuana and have been for thousands of years yet not one case study of lung cancer due solely to marijuana has ever been produced. By the way taxing legal marijuana could give way for more treatment and prevention programs like you mention the community needs more of .
Steve February 25, 2013 at 05:34 PM
I wonder how you get the title of "Drug Expert"?
japentz March 01, 2013 at 05:21 AM
Mike, it is apparent that you have never Googled "Cannabis Cures Cancer" or attempted to investigate the number of US Cannabis Patents. If you had a family member that had benefited from its use in curing a disease, you might feel differently. If you are going to write on a topic, as a reporter, you need to fact check and verify. At least when I was schooled in investigative journalism, that is what was pounded into us. Unless you are willing to research all aspects and sides of this issue and educate yourself, your articles are nothing more than uneducated opinion. You have lost credibility as a real journalist, but then again most people posing as journalists really are not credible as they simply regurgitate opinions and talking points, not to mention propaganda of the corporate owned mainstream media. You may find this insulting, but what I find highly insulting is that you do not know your subject matter at all. I suggest if you are going to really inform people, you do real work and homework. But it is apparent that real research is not your thing and that you like hearing or reading yourself talk. That really does the public little good. You know what they say about opinions . .. they are like a certain part of your body that excretes . . . everyone has one. Your article simply shows ignorance, laziness and an unwillingness to do any valuable work. A shame that the media no longer informs and educates.
OoglyBooglyEnt March 01, 2013 at 08:28 AM
Right now in MD Personal Use 10 g or less is a misdemeanor CRIME 90 days PRISON TIME $500 Fine. Look it up! House Bill 1453 needs to be taken seriously. It's insane to continue marijuana prohibition just as it would be insane to go back to alcohol prohibition. What we have right now is a black market free for all where all the profits are supporting gangs in an unregulated market and THIS CREATES CRIME! IT CREATES VIOLENCE AND CRIME BECAUSE OF ITS PROHIBITION! IT CREATES VIOLENCE AND CRIME BECAUSE OF ITS PROHIBITION! Remember Al Capone? Bootleggers? Underground alcohol violence? Also, when is the last time you heard of a drug dealer checking an ID to make sure their customer was 21?! House Bill 1453 will make that happen. Its a FACT that right now its easier for kids to get MJ than alcohol simply because it's being sold underground. Even if you could care less about MJ you could benefit from getting this passed. We're putting people in PRISON over this. PRISON!! Can you imagine going to jail over a beer during alcohol prohibition? It costs between $40,000-$50,000 to jail someone in MD for just 1 year. Voters in CO and WA had enough wasting billions trying to enforce outdated MJ prohibition laws and decided to TAX, REGULATE, and CONTROL MJ last election. They decided to take a smart approach. TAX, REGULATE, AND CONTROL IT!
Stephen Daniel March 01, 2013 at 11:05 AM
http://www.webmd.com/lung-cancer/news/20060523/pot-smoking-not-linked-to-lung-cancer Smoking pot does not cause cancer this a fact. Cannabis does cure cancer. So free the cure for cancer please. Stop writing propaganda for the corporations.
Andrew Keister March 09, 2013 at 02:12 PM
This man has never smoked marijuana in his life, otherwise he would know better. You want to know how to get our kids and everyone away from synthetic marijuana? Legalize the real thing! It's not that hard.
Andrew Keister March 11, 2013 at 10:17 PM
"causes more lung damage & cancer than cigarettes" Are you kidding me? Also someone beat me to it already. Marijuana doesn't need to be smoked. It can be eaten and vaporized ;) As for everyone else that isn't the guy who wrote this article: Sign my petition on the whitehouses website: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/legalize-marijuana-recreational-usage/PBSwY4b0


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