If anyone needs a reminder on the absurdity of the U.S. approach to drugs, consider the fact that cannabis is classified as a Schedule 1 drug with “no currently accepted medical use” and a “high potential for abuse,” while alcohol is not even included in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).
Of course, alcohol is a drug, as any psychologist will tell you, with a high potential for abuse; and it's not used as a treatment for medical conditions. Moderate alcohol use may have some health benefits, but heavy use can bring a host of negative health impacts.
Still, alcohol is left to the states to regulate, untouched by the fateful 1970 CSA that began Nixon’s War on Drugs and spawned the DEA. As we have reported, this war against freedom was targeted at blacks and “hippies” who drove the counter-culture force demanding an end to militarism.
That 60s mindset of peace and love was a threat to the establishment, as the movement was growing for a principle of non-aggression, in contrast to the rise of U.S. hegemony underscored by the Vietnam War tragedy.
Psychedelics and cannabis were integral to this understanding of non-aggression, and they were targeted for elimination--while alcohol was ignored.
This was the perfect setup, and science shows us why.
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In a new study that appeared in Psychopharmacology, researchers investigated “the acute effects of alcohol and cannabis on subjective aggression in alcohol and cannabis users.”
The results confirmed what has long been suspected—alcohol facilitates aggressive feelings in heavy alcohol users, while aggressive feelings are diminished in regular cannabis users.
After abstaining from alcohol and cannabis for one week, subjects “received single doses of alcohol and placebo or cannabis and placebo, respectively.”
Subjective aggression was measured before and after exposure using established testing methods and, secondarily, by looking at testosterone and cortisol levels.
“Subjective aggression significantly increased following aggression exposure in all groups while being sober. Alcohol intoxication increased subjective aggression whereas cannabis decreased the subjective aggression following aggression exposure. Aggressive responses during the PSAP increased following alcohol and decreased following cannabis relative to placebo.”
Interestingly, the “cannabis group” also used psychedelic mushrooms much more frequently in their “lifetime use of other drugs” than did the “alcohol group.” We have reported on the amazing ways in which magic mushrooms can benefit the consciousness.
The study is a grim reminder that the war on drugs is rife with negative consequences, as in this case where it arguably stifled the tendency for non-aggression in society as militarism became embedded in the American psyche.