Deputy Drug Czar Gets Lit Up At Marijuana Hearing: Reluctantly Admits Pot Is Safer Than Alcohol

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Yesterday during a heated congressional hearingpoliticians like Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) worked every angle of logic in order to get our deputy drug czar, Michael Botticelli, to admit what most already know…that marijuana is safer than alcohol.

Here’s how it went down:

“How many people die from marijuana overdoses every year?” Connolly asked.

“I don’t know that I know. It is very rare,” Botticelli replied.

“Very rare. Now just contrast that with prescription drugs, unintentional deaths from prescription drugs, one American dies every 19 minutes,” Connolly said. “Nothing comparable to marijuana. Is that correct?”

Botticelli admitted that was true.

“Alcohol—hundreds of thousands of people die every year from alcohol-related deaths: automobile [accidents], liver disease, esophageal cancer, blood poisoning,” Connolly continued. “Is that incorrect?”

But Botticelli refused to answer. Guessing where the line of questioning was headed, he said the “totality of harm” associated with marijuana indicated it was a dangerous drug, even though it was not associated with deaths.

“I guess I’m sticking with the president—the head of your administration—who is making a different point,” Connolly fired back. “He is making a point that is empirically true. That isn’t a normative statement, that marijuana is good or bad, but he was contrasting it with alcohol and empirically he is correct, is he not?”

Botticelli again tried to dodge the question, but Connolly interrupted him and told him to answer.

“Is it not a scientific fact that there is nothing comparable with marijuana?” Connolly asked. “And I’m not saying it is good or bad, but when we look at deaths and illnesses, alcohol, other hard drugs are certainly—even prescription drugs—are a threat to public health in a way that just isolated marijuana is not. Isn’t that a scientific fact? Or do you dispute that fact?”

“I don’t dispute that fact,” Botticelli said.

Unfortunately, the head of the DEA remains stuck in outdated ideology and refuses to concede that smoking pot is far safer than most intoxicants. At a a recent meeting of county sheriffs, DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart reportedly criticized President BHO for telling the truth about the true relative hazards of between pot and alcohol.

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About Author

Born in Long Beach, raised on the central coast: I surf, dab, burn, and blog – though not necessarily in that order. I'm a husband, a father and a lifelong consumer of connoisseur grade weed. I don't drink alcohol or consume any other "drugs." I consider myself to be living proof that weed is not a gateway drug. If it were, I'd be in some serious trouble. Instead, as a 50-year-old ex-realtor that has been smoking weed for nearly 80% of my life (just did the math) ... I can only say, marijuana is safer than prescription pills or alcohol could ever hope to be for calming what stirs the savage beast.

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  • Wildwarzy

    People!! Wake up! It’s time the Feds amend the miss-classification of marijuana as a Schedule I drug considered as addictive and deadly as heroin, crack cocaine and meth. Forget about alcohol, if you are 21 or older you are free to kill yourself with alcohol anytime, why? Because prohibition did not work and people wanted their booze. Look what we know about the effects of alcohol and these other dangerous drugs as compared with what we know about marijuana. The federal law must be amended before we can have a national referendum to legalize marijuana for both medical and recreational use! unfortunately, there are still too many political conservatives and liberals alike stuck in the old mind-set about pot. Until these representatives in office either change their view or retire or pass on we are stuck in neutral. We must elect people who know and understand the truth about marijuana and are wholly committed to changing the laws making it legal to possess and use marijuana for medical and recreational purposes.
    Long Live God’s Plant
    Disabled Vietnam Vet