Unleavened Brett

Brett’s Friday Blog Post

Did you know that Michigan local governments are receiving $87 million from “recreational” marijuana sales? Those pot taxes are supposedly being used to fix potholes, along with improving schools, parks, government buildings, & paying for police. I wonder how long it will be before the government actually promotes smoking pot: “Buy more drugs so kids can have better playgrounds, buses & cafegymnatoriums!” Oh wait, they’re already doing it.

Monroe Township’s Supervisor said: “The thing we wanted to do is to let people see it … the good things we’re doing with the roads and things with no additional taxes…. We try to get the good out there.” No wonder Monroe has all those weed billboards along I-75. The government is legitimizing & de-stigmatizing drug use. “See, it’s not a vice–it’s virtuous! The more you smoke, the more good you do.” Didn’t we already go through this with the empty promises of state lotteries improving schools?! Hey, let’s hook more gamblers to make society better! Great plan. Governments are becoming addicted to drug dollars to fund things they want, so they’ll need to hook more pot users. But do you really think the more smokers, the more taxes are going to go down? If you do, I wonder what you’ve been smoking.

Pot’s gone corporate as a multi-billion dollar industry. More & more pot stores keep opening nearby, including one that’s coming a short distance up the road from our church building. At least a new Taco Bell is also being constructed along the same road too to keep up. What’s more insidious is that government & corporations have a financial interest in keeping the adverse effects & risks from the public.

We recognize that some in pain sing the praises of CBD medical edibles & oils. Even low levels of THC can be prescribed responsibly by doctors. A 2020 NIH study found that such pain relief benefits require THC levels no higher than 5%. But recreational THC–what gets the user high–has seen concentration levels increase exponentially over the past couple of decades (by 30 times more!), making today’s pot far more potent than your Grandma’s grass!

Addiction, mental disorders & cannabis-linked attempted suicides are up. And don’t try to tell me pot’s not a gateway to harder drugs–of course it is. It also means more deadly traffic accidents & accidental poisonings of young people who mistake edibles for candy. Pot use among the young has increased dramatically in just a few short years. Daily use across all ages nearly doubled from 2011 to 2021. A Gallup poll recently found nearly half of adults have tried marijuana, compared to just 4% over 50 years ago. As pot becomes more potent, it’s especially making teens dangerously ill & highly dependent.

Last November, DailyMail.com posted about two major studies: “One study said daily marijuana users had 34% higher risk of heart failure. [The] second said they were 20% more likely to suffer a major heart event or stroke.” Then a study came out of Denmark noting the disturbing link between cannabis & schizophrenia. Last year the “Wall Street Journal” published this: “A major new study shows that people who abuse the drug are more likely to be diagnosed with depression and bipolar disorder.” A couple of years ago CNN.com reported: “Weed users [are] nearly 25% more likely to need emergency care and hospitalization.”

Celebrity physician & addiction medicine specialist, Dr. Drew Pinsky (whom I recently ran into in an airport sandwich shop), said this in a recent PragerU.com video: “I’ve treated thousands of people whose addictions to opiates, alcohol, & other drugs were wrecking their relationships, their careers, & their lives. And I’m telling you marijuana can be both harmful and addictive, just like many other substances. What I’ve seen firsthand for twenty years is now becoming obvious to other doctors and researchers: increased use of marijuana is leading to increased psychosis, bipolar mania, & even spontaneous vomiting, especially in adolescents and young adults. …Some individuals–and not a small number–will have a significant reaction to marijuana. And there is no way to know in advance. You won’t know until it happens. And then it might be too late.”

Marijuana use is a runaway train, & we should all be concerned about its dangerous effects. But I’m not necessarily calling for marijuana to be made illegal again. That horse is out of the barn. My concern is that marijuana use will increase even among Christians who get lulled into thinking that whatever is legal is good. How long will it be before pot use is tolerated & then accepted within the Church?

Yet Christians are called to sobriety (Eph. 5:15-18, 1 Pet. 1:13). That would apply to any intoxicating substances because we should always be in control, clear-headed, & alert. Otherwise, we open ourselves to harmful influences & sinful behaviors, giving the devil more opportunity (1 Pet. 5:8). You lose some ability to distinguish or choose right from wrong. Your judgment is impaired leading to loss of inhibitions, impulsive actions, & dulled spiritual sensitivity. Instead of coping with cares & stresses by temporarily escaping reality–the way Satan wants us to deal with problems–we take them to the Lord who offers lasting comfort, peace & joy.