Legalize Marijuana


So, Michael Phelps, that guy who won eight gold medals in the Beijing Olympics, the most in human history, was caught on photo in an apparent act of smoking pot.

The photo (which I am not posting here out respect for him) was met by mixed reactions of disappointment, dismay, and puzzlement.  For why would a legendary athlete, who has the world on his hands and history on his side, resort to Marijuana?

Michael did not disown the picture and in an admirable fashion atypical of real drug users (like the Philippines’ Alabang Boys), he says:

“I engaged in behavior which was regrettable and demonstrated bad judgment. I’m 23 years old, and despite the successes I have had in the pool, I acted in a youthful and inappropriate way, not in a manner that people have come to expect from me. For this, I am sorry. I promise my fans and the public — it will not happen again.”

In 2001, when master rapper Francis Magalona was arrested by the police for cannabis possession, Philippine Daily Inquirer ace columnist Conrado de Quiros wrote an article pushing for the legalization of Marijuana.

I have never tried using MJ, and I think it is too late to indulge in it as I am past the age of youthful explorations, but I find De Quiros’  arguments sound.  And they hold water to this day.

Read on…



MY heart goes out to Francis Magalona. I’ve always found him to be a nice guy, and I for one would find it a great shame if his arrest, presumably for marijuana use, would ruin his career, or indeed curtail his freedom. I know that other people have been jailed for owning, selling, or using marijuana, and that justice would seem to dictate that they do the same thing to him. Either justice applies to all, or it doesn’t apply at all.

Smoking pot is a crime only because we make it so. Which brings me to my point: I cannot for the life of me imagine why we make it so.

Marijuana is not cocaine, heroin, or opium, which are the chemically manufactured drugs that fry the brain (that is literal, as you’d know if you’ve seen the pictures of the brains of people who have overdosed on them) and induce anti-social behavior. I do buy the idea that they induce people to crime. But including marijuana among the list of dangerous drugs is crazy (in the drug-crazed sense of the word) and merely distracts the law enforcers, such as they can be called that, from throwing their undivided attention to the real menace. Worse, it merely adds another layer to police corruption. The normal victims of marijuana busts are not the Magalona types, they are ordinary people who run into checkpoints and end up with sticks in their wallets or in the compartments of their battered-down cars.

Marijuana in fact belongs to the same category as cigarettes or alcohol. [But] nobody seriously thinks of banning cigarettes or alcohol on the grounds that they are harmful to health or that they produce anti-social behavior.

Arguably, cigarettes and alcohol are far more harmful than marijuana. Cigarettes are infinitely more addictive: make no mistake about it, as doctors and patients with lung cancer from smoking warn, smoking is not a habit, it is an addiction. You cannot smoke two packs of marijuana a day, which is the average consumption of heavy smokers. And alcohol produces far more resolutely anti-social behavior. We do not need to go far to see that: the agony pages, also called the Metro section, is full of stories of people who knife each other to death while drinking gin and cops who shoot up karaoke bars while under the influence of St. Michael. I have yet to know of people who did that while laughing their heads off from the effects of the weed.

We want to ban something, let’s ban guns, not marijuana. Banning guns, quite incidentally looks more and more arduous in the face of opposition by gun-crazed, which is infinitely worse than drug-crazed, congressmen. By all means let us regulate marijuana, the way we regulate alcohol and cigarettes.

I do hope Francis Magalona gets back on his feet and continues to tell the youth to say no to drugs. So he smokes pot: I don’t see the contradiction.

Author: Herdy La. Yumul

A hesitant academic pimp, writer

29 thoughts on “Legalize Marijuana”

  1. oo nga, why don’t you legalize it? dito eh you can even by it over-the-counter in some cafe’s. when you buy a beer, sometimes you get a complimentary mj with it. basta it’s for own consumption.

  2. ha..ha..that’s why they call it “free-country”. Only people abusing these drugs are tourists. Kasi naman, bawal din sa kanila…kaya hayun, once na nakapunta na dito,

    1. Even Obama and a number of US Senators have admitted to using Marijuana.

      So, have you?

      You don’t have to answer, of course.

    1. Why do some people fight for the legalization of marijuana although they have no intentions of smoking pot?

      CaspianX2 gives an excellent answer:

      First they came for the Jews

      and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

      Then they came for the Communists

      and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist.

      Then they came for the trade unionists

      and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.

      Then they came for me

      and there was no one left to speak out for me.

      He explains…

      Just because you aren’t the target of an unfair law doesn’t mean you shouldn’t speak out against it.

      I’ve never smoked marijuana, but I know of no reason that marijuana should be illegal while alcohol and tobacco are legal. It is a law created out of racism and fear-mongering, and one perpetuated by myth and misconception. It is a law that disproportionately affects minorities, and ridiculously disproportionately affects the young.

      It is a costly law, one that makes criminals out of the innocent, and one that empowers real criminals. The war on drugs is a prohibition, and we saw where that road led during the days of alcohol prohibition.

      I stand against this law, not because of how it affects me, but because it is an unjust law.

  3. I didn’t read the part “Legalize it”. Later na lang or tomorrow. hehe.

    I haven’t tried using it too. Pero according to my music teacher/friend, Marijuana is just like cigarette. What’s the difference is it’s not legal. Walang nakukuhang tax.

  4. if marijuana is not cocane o heroine, at ung mga cigarettes and alcohol ay mas naka2adict, y do most teachers say that marijuana is kind of drug, na naka2sira ito sa atin, at kung ilelegalized ang paggamit ng marijuana d2 sa ating bansa,hindi kaya mas dadami na naman ang magi2ng problema ng ating bansa?hindi kaya mas maraming mga kabtaan ang mag-iistop na paga2ral at mas pilihing tumambay at gumamit na lang ng marijuana sir?

  5. Mariejuana is a cigarette a chemically manufactured drugs that fry the brain.
    Pero marami pa rin ang gumagamit nito.
    Kahit nasisira na ang kanilang mga buhay
    Pati mga teenager.

    pano kaya ito maiiwasan,, ???

    But any way, this article is so good and
    im proud of you Sir
    give up the good work
    God bless you sir
    I hope more articles to write

  6. sana nga ay legalized na ang pagmamarijuana dahil dito sa amin ay kahit mga third year highscool lang ay gumagamit na nito at nakikita naman ang resulta na lumulusog sila base sa aking obserbasyon. mas malala pa nga ang paginom ng alak dahil ang ito ang dahilan ng maraming kaguluhan sa aming kumunidad. kaya kung legalize ang alak ay bakit hindi ang marijuana di ba…………………….

  7. Sana illegalise nila ang paggamit ng marijuana sa ating bansa dahil hindi naman to masama sa ating kalusogan dahil ito daw ay nakakataba ayon sa mga alam kong gumagamit nito sa lugar.

  8. —-marijuana is a big waste!!!
    Walang magandang dulot ang hatid ng marijuana… Ito ay basura lamang na kailangan nating linisin at itapon sa pinakailalim at hindi na matatagpuan pa.
    Para sakin, hindi ako pabor kung magiging legal ang marijuana,, pangungunahan ko pa ang pagtututol dito…
    Sa panahon ngaun, maraming akong naririnig na gumagamit ng marijuana para maibsan ang kasawian o lungkot na kanilang nadarama at ginagamit na rin ito ng ilan na “pampatured” kung sila man ay natotorpe.
    Natatawa ako sa mga naririnig kung yun. . .
    Hindi nila alam na mas marami pang magagandang dapat pagkaadikan na maganda ang dulot sa kanila…

    1. grayhamz, e kung ganyan ang pagdadahilan mo e di ipagbawal narin natin ang alak. Maraming krimen ang nangyayari dahil sa kalasingan. Pero huwag naman… The key is in moderation, control, and self-restraint.

  9. I have watched the documentary film about the “Golden Triangle” in public tv in the west coast which pertains to the cultivation, distribution and legalization of mj in a controlled environment. The place is in northern Calif- in Napa valley located in Napa County which is very famous in vineyard farmland and wineries.

    I have visited the place once and hopped at different wineries for wine tasting expedition- places like the Berringer, Mondavi, Black Stallion and others. My experience is comparable during my college days semestral break spent in Ilocos Norte- hopped places like Bacsil, Vintar and Dingras to taste the local “basi” with “kilawen nga kalding”. The last barrio I have visited was “Sail” where the locals serve the local wine with the “timba” that they used to extract water from the water well.

    The legalization of mj in this sector cropped up through proposition which was voted favorably by the local constituents. Local entrepeneurs set up nursery and provide classes for prospective mj growers in the area. The quota was 20 mj-tree per hectare at any given time but growers abuse this qouta most of the time for profit reasons. The expected profit per tree upon maturity of the plant is approx $5K which would rack up $100K every six months before expense. The mj’s are also graded based on its potency ala france “brandy”- the more “aged” it is the more expensive. The ready for use commodity is being auction in the local clearing house thru bidding. The pricing will be dictated through “supply-and-demand” theory of economics which would be comparable to the local growers and traders of “bawang” in Ilocos.

    The dispense of medicinal mj in the entire state is thru doctor’s prescription at a regulated quantity. The mj pharmacy is comparable to a sari-sari store where in you have various selections at different price range. The store located in Oakland Calif is owned and operated by an immigrant from Amsterdam- now your eyes starts to roll!! These are legitimated business since they paid their state and feds taxes.

    The process is not as simple as “ABC” as noted in the film when you visit the mj growing county when you exposed young kids living within the school district. It is about a question to the parents and educators in the district if they allow this to co-exists with their children. Some residents left the area and others stayed which is individual preference.

    My only regrets, as an Ilocano Fil-Am immigrant, is my six-acre land is located in Redding county not in Napa, otherwise, this would make me a potential “landlord”….in retrospect there is a reason for everything.

    1. How’s peace and order in Napa valley? I bet my thumb, crime rates there are even lower than here in the Philippines, where MJ is banned.

  10. Hey Donna,

    Maybe you should try it. Then maybe you can make a true comment of you experience. Don’t worry, you won’t go to hell. You’ll actually feel the “3 H’s”…Happy, Hungry, Hor__. =) Now, who wouldn’t want that?

  11. araw araw ako nagamit ng marijuana, it keeps my body beautiful and healthy sooo, kaylangan na dapat maging “legal” na ang marijuana dito sa pinas, madaming benefits ang makukuha sa weeds…diyos naten ang gumawa ng marijuana ginawa nya ito para makagaling ng mga sakit, hindi yan ginawa ng tao tulad ng shabu..

  12. It’s so easy to legalize mj. Just make it very profitable for the government or for the leaders of this country.

  13. bakit na llegalize ang mariwana??? sa taong nag aral tama ba ?sa taong tuwid tama ba ? sa taong makaDiyos tama ba ???? wag niong pag kumpara ang alak at marijuana kc walang tama sa kanila wag na nating dagdagan ang pagkakamaling minsan ng ginawa sa pag papalegalize ng alak db??? kc mali na nga un nilegalize ung alak bago sasabihin nio bakit ang alak nalegalize bago mariwana ndi??/

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