I am pro-cannabis. I’m not an active user but I absolutely see the benefits of legalising the use of marijuana. Especially as someone with a disability. And as someone with a mental health condition. There may come a time, and a strain, that will benefit me!
But I confess that I have a limit; people smoking it in public. Aside from the smell which permeates every walk I take in Glasgow, the second-hand marijuana smoke makes me physically sick..
A lady upstairs in my apartment complex is reliant on her weed. She smokes it upward of 5 times a day; morning, noon, and night. This is her routine and it helps her function but I think the conversation about smoking weed is so aggravated by stigma and legal jargon that it is impossible for me to tell her to stop doing it outside my bathroom window. It remains open for ventilation and condensation reasons but it often feels redundant.
Since she moved in, my bathroom, front hall and bedroom is filled with the savoury scent of her herbal refreshment. The smell, however, can be relatively mitigated by scented candles or airfreshener. A bit hypocritical, I guess, because I partake in a cigarette everyday. And my partner smokes tobacco. But, the smell of weed has sort of come as an anxiety ridden warning for me.
The actual affect of weed is something that really can’t be tackled with a constantly burning Yankee and some Airglade.
Much like many other medications, you take them when you need them (usually there is an advisable time frame) but all modern medications, including weed, have been developed with this in mind. Vape it, eat it, suck it, drink it, swallow it; definitely take it! Just do it in a way that I’m not forced to take it with you. When someone administers an epi-pen, they do not have one on stand-by to ram into a passer-by.
There are higher risks to second hand marijuana smoke! Specific to marijuana, it rapidly lowers blood pressure and affects function of blood vessels, the number of toxins in second-hand marijuana smoke than in tobacco smoke alone. We all talk about legendary contact-highs, but there are truths to it; people exposed to second-hand marijuana smoke have detectable levels of THC which is detrimental to those who are highly sensitive to THC. Chemical induced anxiety, headaches, nausea, vertigo, dry mouth.
Everyone has the right to breathe smokefree air; Everyone has the right to live their life comfortably and happily. Everyone has the right to receive and administer medicine to improve or preserve their quality of life. This is a particularly difficult area to navigate; what constitutes “health” for one person is not necessarily preserving of another persons “health”. But what is clear is this; your right to smoke weed for medicinal reasons does not give you the right to expose me to a substance that is harmful to me. My advocacy does not alleviate the liability for causing harm. Especially when there are methods of taking your medication that do not impact others at all.
Medicine is prescribed for the person; not the population.