Although alcohol is known for its destructive effects, it has been considered an acceptable part of life for so long. Alcohol remains legal despite the fact that it has been proven to contribute to death from overdoses, domestic violence, automobile accidents and many other destructive effects, yet there is far more stigma around cannabis. There is stigma that cannabis is a gateway to harder drugs and that those who use cannabis are junkies, people who are unintelligent and lay around and do nothing with their life.
It has been led to believe that cannabis is a dangerous and addictive drug, when in fact alcohol is more addictive. Drinking 10 times of what is considered the normal amount of alcohol within 5 or 10 minutes can be fatal, while smoking cannabis might require like 1,000 times what is usually normal to cause death.
Based on research studies, there is scientific consensus of alcohol being associated with several types of cancers, but health experts aren’t sure whether smoking cannabis increases the odds of getting cancer. There have been many alcohol related overdoses resulting in death, but rarely if any deaths related to overdoses from cannabis.
Thousands of deaths are related to overdosing from illicit drug use such as heroin and cocaine, as well as prescription drugs, including painkillers and tranquilizers, but cannabis is not included in that number, yet stigma remains that it is a dangerous addictive drug that destroys lives.
Even with the legalization of cannabis in several states, there is still negative stigma still around it. People, who smoke for medical reasons, are sometimes looked at as being bad people, those who just want to get high or those who are addicts. Even though alcohol has been proven to be deadlier and more addictive, still more negativity remains around cannabis.
In order for cannabis to be looked at as a positive instead of a negative, there has to be a shift in perceptions about it. Calling people junkies or crackheads, when cannabis do not create junkies or crackheads needs to stop. This negative stigma has turned good people into criminals. Its negative stigma has hindered medical research. Removing the negative stigma is difficult, because of the negativity that has been associated with it for so long. Cannabis has got to be looked at in different light in order for the negative stigma to be removed and to be accepted as a normal part of life.