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It is a well-established fact that alcohol increases accident risk because it impairs the perception, coordination, and judgment necessary for the safe operation of a motor vehicle on road. In driving simulator test, marijuana intoxication has been shown to mildly harm psychomotor skills but this impairment does not appear to be severe or long lasting. However in California, marijuana laws related to DUI (Driving under influence) makes it illegal to drive a motor vehicle under the influence of marijuana.

Driving back from Harborside Health Center in the days before the famed medical marijuana dispensary was blasted onto Discovery Channel, I struggled to keep my car on the road.

I was way too high, and should never have gotten behind the wheel.

But whenever I admit to myself that marijuana can have side effects, to say so sounds like I am agreeing with the drug warriors who’ve long exaggerated marijuana’s potential “harms.â€

All excuses aside, I was too stoned to be operating a ton of pollution-generating machinery. In the previous few hours, I’d smoked Trainwreck, Blue Dream, three kinds of Kush, some Honey Wax, and eaten part of a medible.

It was that darnned medible that put the icing on the THC, I said to myself as I laughed insanely at the sheer "genius" of my wit.

It didn’t help that I was listening to ex-Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett on my surround sound audio system.

Steve is the most heartfelt, lyrically-sensitive, mind-bending guitarist-songwriter working today. His textured, haunting music and lyrics lead your mind off into outer and inner space...but that's not a place you can afford to be when you're driving Interstate 80 near Berkeley during rush hour.

At least I had the good sense to drive slowly, and in the right-hand lane.

I kept slapping my face and head while yelling, “Stay alert, stay focused, get past this traffic jam, then get your ass off the road, you stupid stoner.†Kept repeating that warning, welcoming the semi-sobering surge of self-loathing adrenalin that cleared my head a little.

When finally I’d gotten past the Bay Area's industrialized traffic-jammed nightmare and could turn north towards Humboldt, I saw a dirt road leading off into gold-burnished hills, rattled over a cattle guard, turned off the car, climbed onto the roof with a bottle of water, put on Steve’s Beyond the Shrouded Horizon (a brilliant album that sounds like Beethoven mixed with Jimi Hendrix mixed with early Peter Gabriel Genesis), and drifted off into a dreamy marijuana haze.

I made it home 16 hours later, and was reminded of that too-stoned journey recently when I heard legislators in various medical marijuana states are determined to pass laws regulating driving under the influence of marijuana.

Why do they want to do that? Here’s an example of marijuana-driving hysteria from a report in mainstream propaganda media:

“Marijuana causes dizziness, slowed reaction time and drivers are more likely to drift and swerve while they're high.

Dr. Bob DuPont, president of the Institute for Behavior and Health, a non-government institute that works to reduce drug abuse, says research proves "the terrible carnage out there on the roads caused by marijuana."

One recent review of several studies of pot smoking and car accidents suggested that driving after smoking marijuana might almost double the risk of being in a serious or fatal crash.

And a recent nationwide census of fatal traffic accidents showed that while deadly crashes have declined in recent years, the percentage of mortally wounded drivers who later tested positive for drugs rose 18 percent between 2005 and 2011.

DuPont, drug czar for Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, wrote a paper last year on drugged driving for the Obama administration, which has made the issue a priority.â€

Oh, take a chill pill already, DuPont. Yes, this DuPont is from the same bloodline of DuPont quislings whose family corporation was partly responsible for hemp and marijuana being outlawed in 1937. They wanted hemp outlawed because its industrial uses competed with DuPont nylon and other petroleum-based products.

As always it is with arbitrary-minded government folk, they go for simplistic, draconian "solutions." They're proposing a maximum blood plasma level for THC, as if X percent of cannabinoids equals X percent of driving impairment. It's the THC equivalent of the blood alcohol approach.

But medical marijuana, and its users, are far more sophisticated than alcohol and its fans. The legislators don't understand the nuances, but the rest of us get it that if you drink past a certain point, you're going to go comatose or worse. Not so for marijuana, which has a completely different set of physiological effects on your body.

And anti-marijuana politicians don’t understand is that everybody’s head responds differently to marijuana. Some people drive better when they’re stoned. They're more cautious, less prone to road rage. Some people smoke huge amounts of the most potent cannabis, but you can’t even tell they’re high.

Other people smoke only a couple of grams and start sounding like they’re auditioning for a Cheech and Chong movie.

We all know that whenever politicians get involved in medical morality they tend to make a hash of things, and I’m not talking about bubblehash, either.

We all know that medical marijuana users should drive safely, whether we have THC in our body or not. I learned my lesson during that crazy drive from Harborside. I'll never make that mistake again.

If politicians really want to help make the roads safer, all they have to do is encourage police to enforce laws against going too fast, bumpering, speeding, running red lights, unsafe lane changes, failure to use turn signals, broken headlights, flipping birds, running into pedestrians and bicylists…in other words, laws against dangerous driving behavior, ​not against THC in my body.

Don’t go adding insult to blood tests by making a law saying if I have a certain amount of THC in my blood that it means I am automatically “impaired," so they can add a marijuana DUI to my legal woes. Because I have been around people who never get impaired no matter how much THC they ingest, and people who drive like maniacs even though they’ve never ingested THC!

And you notice that the anti-marijuana politicians aren't pushing for maximum blood levels for other drugs that more automatically diminish driving capacity than marijuana ever could.

Valium, Vicodin, Percocet, Soma...where are the specific DUI codes and blood level legal triggers for those drugs that so easily make it hard to properly operate a motor vehicle?

Let's just enforce the laws against bad driving behaviors, and leave it at that.

Now let me get back to worrying about whether they'll try to ban Steve Hackett from car audio systems.

Daniel Dharma has a master's degree that combines religious studies, neuropsychology and counseling. He's spent years examining the inner terrain of medical marijuana use, culture and gardening.

Source: http://bigbudsmag.com/lifestyle/article/medical-marijuana-and-driving-safety-medical-marijuana-highway-march-2012

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No to driving under, i dont care about this one who drives but others on road. Reactions are fucked up, and this is not ok. We maked few experiments with my uncle, he run driving school and we both agree no to smoke and driving.

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yeah too a certain limit i agree with you elektro, i mean that if you've smoked 1 J or 2 in the day and it's end of the day, you are still really able to drive safey for me. Now i condamn the guys rolling Joints after joints in their cars full of smoke, get their head over and then drive, that is criminal.

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“Marijuana causes dizziness, slowed reaction time and drivers are more likely to drift and swerve while they're high. - this was excatly i heard from my uncle. Medicined ? Just stoned and high.

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I couldn't agree with you more! As I was almost a victim to this business. I left my house after receiving a call from a friend that he was intoxicated, and needed someone to talk to as he was dealing with custody issues with his ex. As a good friend I had to stand up. So i pick him up in a custom truck I was painting that had no license plate light, but otherwise nice. Coming over the overpass making a left 5 blocks from home now, here comes the lights. I pulled over, the officer commences with his spiel about the license plate light and asks if I have had anything to drink. I told him earlier in the evening about three hours prior. He has me do the field sobriety tests, which upon video review shows no indication that I was intoxicated. And then tells me to turn around and place my hands behind my back. I said I had completed all his tasks, to which he replied not to his satisfaction. I told him I lived 5 blocks away could I walk home. Not an option, he says unless I wanna blow in the breathalyzer to check. I refused, because I knew I was fighting this one. He gets a warrant for my blood an hour and a half later. Take the blood, and then back to the jail. I made bail, results from my blood came back at a. 06 (bac) which is well below the legal little. But there was 9mgs of active Thc in my blood, that they then wanted to combine with the. 06 to show that I was intoxicated. Besides that, New Mexico has an impaired to the slightest degree law. Meaning even at. . 00 bac, if the officer feels you are intoxicated he can arrest you. But then must present a rigid case if it goes to trial. Being very familiar and well versed in the ways of weed and its effects on the body I let them know that first they couldn't just make numbers up for an intoxication level for me because it would need to be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. Especially since they were then trying to go the impaired to the slightest degree route. Also they would need to know exactly how my body personally metabolises Thc, and then thirdly would need to factor in the tolerance I've built since heavy use since the age of 16. Well my lawyer then says that the jury will decide and in that particular part of new mexico, well steeped in propaganda ideals the jury would most likely not be of my peers but of retirees that were actually available for duty and couldn't be excluded for any reason. It was a public defender representing me and she apparently didn't have as much fight in her as I did. Long story short after they put 3 plea bargains in front of me to keep me from going to trial with it. They hadn't been able to serve the officer and the girl who actually testes my blood no longer worked there and could not be served either. After a freeze, the judge dying and my family and I moving to las vegas. They drug me back to new Mexico off and on for court appearances that were continued over and over and finally after 2 and a half years of fighting the case, it was dismissed. Didn't have a single witness so the impaired to the slightest degree trick could not be backed up and the judge was so furious that she couldn't hang me. In the end it cost me well over 4000 dollars to drive back and forth over the 2 and a half years and plenty of headache all for the sake of the mafia called the police and an attempt at revenue generation. Glad I stuck it out and didn't lay down for them

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