Pought Thots

Swedish pot-prisoners
To my friends at Cannabis Culture,

A thousand thanx for your generous packages of CC magazines and CC cap, which arrived safely to this prison today. You have made us very happy! I have distributed the mags at the G and H blocks here, so now almost everyone in this joint will have some cool stuff to read.

I read the article about Sweden (CC#10, Beware the Swedish Narconazis!). It’s completely true! I have been forced to have about 120 urine tests, 25 blood tests, etc. These resulted in about 120 fines, which I never paid, hell no!

A fortnight ago someone put an armed bomb inside one of the offices of the RNS Riksf?rbundst Narkotikafritt Samh?lle (aka National Union for a Narcotics Free Society). Too bad they found the bomb before it exploded. Better luck next time!

All the best wishes,
Ulf Baganhammar
Haktet Prison,
Y?nk?ping, Sweden

Ulf first wrote to us back in issue #20, telling us about life as a Swedish pot-prisoner. We sent him and his cellmates a stack of magazines to help keep them entertained. We’re glad Sweden’s freedom of speech laws are better than their repressive drug laws. Most prisons refuse to let inmates read our subversive ‘zine. It warms my heart to think of two whole cell blocks getting comfort and a good read from Cannabis Culture.

? Dana

What is Rasta Zen?

Zen Master: “Buddha! Buddha!”

Rasta: “I and I.”

Haile Selassie is King Alpha and Queen Omega (I and I).

Rasta realization is that all people are manifestations of Jah. Zen enlightenment is seeing Buddha in yourself and others.

Ras James
Rider of Selassie I’s flying white horse

High Times copycat?

Dear editor,

I hate to knock an information base that literally brings more freedom to my life, but here goes anyway. I have all the issues of Cannabis Culture/Canada, and notice a very obvious shift in them. You want to be the Canadian High Times. Is there anything wrong with that? I certainly think there is.

The early issues strike me as being more serious about Canadian pot/hemp news than now, without trying to be like anybody else.

There is plenty going on right here. You should also achieve a better balance between marijuana, hemp, and med pot articles. For example issue #19 just had too much med-pot and USA issues. Mostly the USA thing bugs me.

Be unique and serious and you will take this thing even further. You already know how to do it so do it.

Thankful reader,
George Burrows

Although I envy High Times’ circulation and name-recognition, I am not striving to imitate them in the creation or content of CC. I’ve stopped wincing when we get called the Canadian High Times, but if HT fulfilled my vision of what the ultimate pot magazine should be then I wouldn’t have bothered starting Cannabis Culture. Hopefully one day CC will be as good as the ?ber pot-zine I hold in my mind.

The quantity or quality of our Canadian coverage has not diminished over the years. Although we were initially called Cannabis Canada, our early issues all featured articles on US and international news and events. Issue #19, which you complain about, had 10 pages of Canadian news and 3 Canadian grow, 16 pages of US news and 12 international. These figures will of course vary greatly between issues, depending on what happens in the world and where we decide to focus our attention. This issue has a massive article on Jamaica, next issue it will be something different.

So kwitchyerbitchin and just enjoy the magazine.

? Dana

Kids & Pot

Your magazine kicks ass!! My husband and I always eagerly await its arrival at our local hemp store, then we’re on it like two fat kids on a Smartie!

We read with great interest the article Kids & Pot: A parent’s dilemna (CC#20). It’s always nice to hear both sides of an argument. We both feel that you can’t place an age on drug use. Everyone is different and should be treated as an individual.

It’s difficult for some parents to deal with these issues, especially if they have no prior experience or receive only negative information on the subject. Many times, the problems go far beyond drug use. Being a teenager can really suck, drugs or no drugs.

By my own choosing, I was exposed to drugs at a very young age. There was no peer pressure. I was curious, and I wanted to add some fun to an otherwise shitty childhood. (I was exposed to unwanted violence, sex and abuse at a very young age.) What I didn’t know was that sometimes finding fun can be dangerous. There are many situations a teenaged girl cannot control or understand, and that’s why some kids get hurt around drugs.

It is imperative that safe, positive environments be available to our children to ask questions, or to experiment.

Respectfully submitted by one of
Two Saskatchewan Farmers
Peace be the Journey

Thanks for your comments. I believe that in a sane society, young people would be introduced to mind-altering substances and told that they are special, enjoyable, in some cases dangerous.

Parents who share pot or other drugs with their children in an honest and healthy manner are making a responsible decision. I say get youthful drug use off the streets and back in the home! I think “family values” could be greatly improved if more parents smoked up or dropped acid with their kids once in a while. At what age that is appropriate is best left for individual families to decide.

? Dana

Dependence dilemma

I have smoked pot for 25 years. The last 12 years I’ve had an unlimited supply of very strong Indica. I developed a tolerance and with continued use became chemically dependent, showing identifiable withdrawal symptoms (stomach upset, chills and irritability).

The plant has power. I developed a very strong, almost crippling emotional attachment to the mood-altering effects of the plant, which can lead to an out-of-control situation. My willpower was less powerful than the natural energy of the plant, at which point abuse set in.

This was not the plant’s problem, it was my problem. It’s just that my relationship to the plant became physically, emotionally, spiritually and socially problematic over time! (The same can be said for other compulsive behaviour patterns based on eating, sex or work.)

I believe that pot should be kept away from young people because it can get in the way of clear and healthy choices that must be made early in life. For people who have a well developed sense of self, (have a job, hobbies, friends, social network) the recreational use of pot is empowering, fun and harmless. I just don’t think that pot is healthy for people who have “not arrived” as it were.

The risk is that without a balanced persona it is possible to become totally immersed in the cannabis subculture, and thereby miss out on some necessary “growth experiences” which are normally found outside the pot-smoking community. I think would diminish the overall quality of life.

When I started smoking it set me free. Now I must stop smoking to reach a level of freedom that my soul has desired for as long as I’ve been chemically dependent.

“If you don’t smoke every day, leave it that way.”

Raven Wolf

As someone who is totally immersed in the cannabis subculture, I have found many growth experiences available to me through cannabis which would otherwise never have come my way. My love affair with marijuana has expanded my knowledge and awareness of botany, history, pharmacology, sociology, politics and other arenas, as well as providing mystical insights into myself and the nature of reality.

People who don’t have a job, hobbies, friends, or social network are likely already in dire straits whether or not they smoke marijuana. Yet on the other hand I have met many people who have found these things through marijuana, and through being members of the cannabis culture. Many people find hope and meaning in the miracle of the marijuana plant.

As to the question of your “marijuana addiction,” you don’t specify what it was about pot smoking that became so problematic for you. And while I agree that a minority of people do see their personal pot use as problematic, I don’t think that justifies prohibition and legal sanctions any more than we should ban sex, food or work.

Perhaps if you had been introduced to cannabis at a young age and had its properties and use rationally explained to you, you might not have developed your obsession and difficulties with it later on in life.

I also theorize that some of those who experience pain or discomfort when they stop using pot may in fact be getting some significant medical benefit from their marijuana use, of which they are unaware. So what they think are withdrawal symptoms are really the recurrence of an ailment kept at bay by cannabis.

? Dana