2001-2008
Home
Main
- About TFT
Friday Thing Archive
- Politics
- Media
- Culture and Society
- War On Terror
- People
- Places
- World
- Popped Clogs
- Music
- Books
- Film
- Etc
Help And Info
- Contact Details
- Advertising
- Jobs
- Privacy Policy
- XML Feed

Home > Culture and Society

Professor Robin Murray: weed makes you potty

"In schizophrenia, the hallucinations and delusions result from an excess of a brain chemical called dopamine. All the drugs which are known to cause psychosis - amphetamine, cocaine and cannabis - increase the release of dopamine in the brain."

- Professor Murray

3 July 2003

According to Robin Murray, professor of psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry and so on and so forth, we as a society should think carefully about the potential consequences of our increasing cannabis use. He points to a recent Dutch study which showed that heavy users of cannabis were almost seven times more likely to have psychotic symptoms and the like.

Same goes of course, for 'heavy users' of anything, so that's enough of that balderdash. Itís not as if matters anyway. You can study as many stoners and schizos as you like, Robin, you're not going to stop people smoking dope. Now chill out, for fuck sake.

And while Professor Murray fills his bong, let's turn our attention to 55-year-old Biz Ivol. After being diagnosed with MS in the early 90s, Ms Ivol started using cannabis to ease the pain that prescription palliatives could not reach. Then she began making cannabis chocolates for other MS sufferers. Then, after police paid her a visit in August 2001, she was charged with possessing, supplying and cultivating the drug..

During the case Ms Ivol announced that she would commit suicide when it was over. Her death she said, would stand as a final protest against the governementís obscene and frankly indefensible refusal to decriminalise cannabis for medical use. This week, due to her increasing ill health and inability to attend court, the charges against her were dropped. Which seems a bit weak-wristed really. If you're going to prosecute an old woman with a painful disease, if you're going to indict her for easing her pain with the extract of a common plant, then you should at least have the gumption and the strength of conviction for conviction when the going gets tough. They should have dragged her into the courtroom, put her in the stocks to keep her still and put that dope-pushing bitch on ice. But they backed down because it looked bad. And it looked bad because it was bad. And it still is.

Hours after learning that the charges against her were dropped, Ms Ivol was taken to hospital after being found unconscious by friends. It may have been a suicide bid, but an unnamed government spokesman told us 'she was probably just stoned'.

How primitive are we? What are we playing at? Make it legal for everyone, tax it, educate people, keep an eye on your broody mate who has a touch of nascent psychosis about him and don't be a hard-headed buffoon. But no. Instead, at this week's British Medical Association conference in Torquay, a majority of hard-headed buffoons decided legalisation would send the wrong message to other drug users. Like if it's OK for cancer patients, itís OK for anyone. And apparently it's not. It drives you mad, you know. And yet an unaccompanied child can still walk into any supermarket and buy a carton of Sunny Delight without anyone batting an eyelid.

Now that's madness.


More Reefer Madness:

www.theatlantic.com/issues/97apr/reef.htm



Comment on this article: letters@thefridaything.co.uk

Subscribe to The Friday Thing for free


 ABOUT THE FRIDAY THING
Bad words ahead The Friday Thing is a weekly email comment sheet. Casting a cynical eye over the week's events, it is rarely fair and never balanced.

A selection of articles from each week's issue appear online, but to enjoy the full Thing, delivered by email every Friday - as well as access to almost five years of back issues - you'll need to subscribe. It's absolutely free.

READERS WRITE
"Razor-sharp comment and gossip." - The Sunday Times

"Hilariously cynical..To describe it as 'irreverent' is to do the newsletter an injustice." - The Observer

"Sharp, intelligent, opinionated, uncompromising and very, very funny. Just like 'Private Eye' used to be." - Alec McKelland

"Wicked" - Channel 4

"Ace" - Time Out

"'We rise once again in advocacy of The Friday Thing. We realize that some of you may be unwilling to spend [your money] on plain-text comment, but you're only depriving yourself." - The Minor Fall, The Major Lift

"Subscribing to this at the beginning of the year was undoubtedly one of the better decisions I've made. Superlative, and utterly marvellous. I look forward to Fridays now, because I can't wait for the next issue. Fucking fucking brilliant." - Meish.org

"Featuring writers from The Observer, Smack The Pony and The 11 O'Clock Show... will continue to attract new subscribers sight unseen" - NeedToKnow

"The Friday Thing is so good it's stopping me from doing a bunk of a Friday afternoon." - Annie Blinkhorn (The Erotic Review)

"So now" - The Evening Standard

"Damn it, you rule. May you never, ever back down." - Paul Mayze

"Ace" - PopJustice

"Snarky" - Online Journalism Review

"Can you please stop making me laugh out loud... I'm supposed to be working, you know!" - Tamsin Tyrwhitt

"Your coverage of stuff as it spills is right on the money." - Mike Woods

"Popbitch with A-Levels." - Tim Footman

"In an inbox full of trite work-related nonsense, TFT shines from under its subject heading like the sun out of Angus Deayton's arse." - Nikki Hunt

"A first rate email. It's become an integral part of my week, and my life would be empty and meaningless without it (well, *more* empty and meaningless anyway)." - Mark Pugh

"Genius, absolute bit of class. And you can quote me on that." - Lee Neville

"If you're hipper than hell, this is what you read." - MarketingSherpa

"The most entertaining email I've had all week. Great tone." - Matthew Prior

"A massive and engrossing wit injection." - idiotica.co.uk

"I wouldn't know satire if it bit me on the arse. But I did like the Naomi Campbell joke." - Matt Kelly (The Mirror)

"Has had an understandably high profile among people who know about these things." - Guy Clapperton (Guardian Online)

"Satirical sideswipes at the burning issues of the day." - Radio 5 Live

"Puerile and worthless... Truly fabulous... Do read the whole thing." - Stephen Pollard

© The Friday Thing 2001-2008 - All Rights Reserved