William J. Bennett, former director of the National Drug Control policy under President George H.W. Bush and bestselling author of The Book of Virtues, and co-author Robert White provide strong societal and scientific arguments against the legalization of marijuana.
Marijuana, once considered worthy of condemnation, has in recent years become a "medicine," legalized fully in four states, with others expected to follow. But the dangers are clear. According to Bennett's research, more Americans are admitted to treatment facilities for marijuana use than for any other illegal drug. Studies have shown a link between marijuana use and abnormal brain structure and development. From William Bennett comes a call-to-action for the 46 states that know better than to support full legalization, and a voice of reason for millions who have jumped on the legalization bandwagon because they haven't had access to the facts.
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About the Author
WILLIAM J. BENNETT is the former director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy under President George H.W. Bush. He is also the former head of the National Endowment for the Humanities and former U.S. Secretary of Education.
Learn more: BillBennett.com
ROBERT A. WHITE is the managing partner of the New Jersey offices of a large international law firm, and former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 Marijuana Use Is Not Safe or Harmless. On the Contrary, It Is Dangerous 1
Chapter 2 What Is "Medical Marijuana"? 30
Chapter 3 Legalization and Its Effects 70
Chapter 4 Drug War Myths 82
Chapter 5 How the Culture Once Successfully Fought Back on Substance Abuse 110
Chapter 6 The International Experience 125
Chapter 7 How to Answer Legalization Efforts and Argue with Those Who Support Legalization 142
Chapter 8 Conclusion 167
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
"Turning marijuana into medicine, making heroes and punchlines out of dealers of marijuana on television and in movies, legalizing its recreational use, refusing to enforce laws on it, having news reports depicting marijuana with sparkles and lights as if it were magic, all contribute toward lowering not only perceived risk, but also social disapproval. When the President of the United States makes jokes about drug abuse (speaking about the White House pastry chef's excellent pies recently, the President told a group, `I don't know what he does--whether he puts crack in them') or compares marijuana to alcohol and cigarettes, the perception of danger drops even lower and use goes up even higher." -- page 78 For authors William J. Bennett and Robert A. White the fact that nearly 60% of Americans now approve of the legalization of marijuana is a shocking turn of events. Back in 1969 the figure was a mere 12% and as recently as 2005 only 33% of our fellow citizens supported the idea. So what has brought about such a dramatic shift in the public's perception of cannabis? Bennett and White believe that there is a boatload of misinformation out there being propagated by supporters of legalization at both ends of the political spectrum. They make their impassioned case to reverse course in their compelling and well-documented new book "Going to Pot: Why the Rush to Legalize Marijuana is Harming America". Not being a pot smoker myself I was not terribly aware of many of the issues involved. The authors present their case against legalization in a very reasoned and methodical way. As far as I am concerned they make an extremely convincing case for their position. In an era where politicians, activists and the media are decrying the dangers of sugar and soft drinks it seems incomprehensible to me that many of these same people are out there clamoring for the legalization of marijuana. Bennett and White cite study after study, report after report, from some of the nation's leading medical institutions that conclude that smoking or ingesting marijuana can be extremely dangerous to your health. The authors are particularly concerned about the insidious impact marijuana can have on our unsuspecting youth. Despite the fact that it is common knowledge that today's marijuana is approximately five times more potent than the pot that folks dabbled with 40 years ago, many teens are convinced that smoking pot is not harmful to their health. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, marijuana usage by 12-17 year olds is dramatically higher in states like Colorado that have legalized pot. Very disturbing indeed! Bennett and White also refute the "compassion" argument for medical marijuana put forth by supporters of legalization. Only 3-4% of individuals actually need medical marijuana to relieve a condition. Furthermore, I was surprised to discover that nowhere do doctors actually issue a prescription for medical marijuana. Rather, individuals contact physicians and request a "note" that allows them to purchase marijuana products with names like "Green Crack", "Voodoo Star" and "Hashey's Medical Chocolate Bar" from a dispensary. The evidence suggests that any Tom, Dick or Harry can obtain such a note. Recall that Congress passed the Pure Food and Drug Act back in 1906 to stamp out snake oil and to regulate the non-uniform processing, manufacturing and peddling of drugs. There is something very wrong with this picture. Clearly the endgame for the overwhelming majority of those pushing for medical marijuana is the legalization of the drug for recreational use. For a whole host of reasons discussed in "Going to Pot" this is a very bad idea as well. There are so many convincing arguments against the legalization of marijuana that it is impossible to list them all here. William Bennett and Robert White have certainly persuaded me beyond a shadow of a doubt that legalized pot is a very bad idea. I also strongly recommend that you read the article from the June 2014 "New England Journal of Medicine" included at the very end of the book. This article is a real eye-opener and enumerates chapter and verse the adverse health effects of marijuana use. I found "Going to Pot: Why the Rush to Legalize Marijuana is Harming America" to be a thoughtful and very well-written book. Reading this book would be a great way for people of all ages to get up to speed on this extremely critical issue. Very highly recommended!
I learned quite a bit, and found the products they showed interesting. However, it was bit dry, and it also seemed quite repetitive. Everybody needs to know the information contained in this tome!
Read in wonder as a bias relic from the past painstakingly attempts to thwart social and scientific progress through use of tedious idiomatic tropes overused over the last 50 years to promote their archaic stance on marijuana and the prohibitionist War on Drugs. If there were negative stars, I would indulge in full.