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There are many reasons why it is not. You may have heard that “one joint is equal to ten cigarrettes” but this is exagerrated and misleading. Marijuana does contain more tar than tobacco — but low tar cigarettes cause just as much cancer, so what is that supposed to mean? Scientists have shown that smoking any plant is bad for your lungs, because it increases the number of `lesions’ in your small airways. This usually does not threaten your life, but there is a chance it will lead to infections. Marijuana users who are worried about this can find less harmful ways of taking marijuana like eating or vaporizing. (Be careful — marijuana is safe to eat — but tobacco is not, you might overdose!) Marijuana does not seem to cause cancer the way tobacco does, though.
Here is a list of interesting facts about marijuana smoking and tobacco smoking:
- Marijuana smokers generally don’t chain smoke, and so they smoke less. (Marijuana is not physically addictive like tobacco.) The more potent marijuana is, the less a smoker will use at a time.
- Tobacco contains nicotine, and marijuana doesn’t. Nicotine may harden the arteries and may be responsible for much of the heart disease caused by tobacco. New research has found that it may also cause a lot of the cancer in tobacco smokers and people who live or work where tobacco is smoked. This is because it breaks down into a cancer causing chemical called N Nitrosamine when it is burned (and maybe even while it is inside the body as well.)
- Marijuana contains THC. THC is a bronchial dilator, which means it works like a cough drop and opens up your lungs, which aids clearance of smoke and dirt. Nicotine does just the opposite; it makes your lungs bunch up and makes it harder to cough anything up.
- There are benefits from marijuana (besides bronchial dilation) that you don’t get from tobacco. Mainly, marijuana makes you relax, which improves your health and well-being.
- Scientists do not really know what it is that causes malignant lung cancer in tobacco. Many think it may be a substance known as Lead 210. Of course, there are many other theories as to what does cause cancer, but if this is true, it is easy to see why NO CASE OF LUNG CANCER RESULTING FROM MARIJUANA USE ALONE HAS EVER BEEN DOCUMENTED, because tobacco contains much more of this substance than marijuana.
- Marijuana laws make it harder to use marijuana without damaging your body. Water-pipes are illegal in many states. Filtered cigarettes, vaporizers, and inhalers have to be mass produced, which is hard to arrange `underground.’ People don’t eat marijuana often because you need more to get as high that way, and it isn’t cheap or easy to get (which is the reason why some people will stoop to smoking leaves.) This may sound funny to you — but the more legal marijuana gets, the safer it is.
It is pretty obvious to users that marijuana prohibition laws are not “for their own good.” In addition to the above, legal marijuana would be clean and free from adulturants. Some people add other drugs to marijuana before they sell it. Some people spray room freshener on it or soak in in chemicals like formaldehyde! A lot of the marijuana is grown outdoors, where it may be sprayed with pesticides or contaminated with dangerous fungi. If the government really cared about our health, they would form an agency which would make sure only quality marijuana was sold. This would be cheaper than keeping it illegal, and it would keep people from getting hurt and going to the emergency room.