July 25, 2011
The Devil’s Herb
As most of you have heard by now, Amy Winehouse was found dead Saturday from a suspected marijuana overdose. It was not entirely unexpected. The troubled singer had struggled for years with marijuana addiction and it was only a matter of time before she took one toke too many.
Reading through Xanga blogs, I am very often perturbed not only by the number of Xangans who admit to using marijuana but also by how many of them are under the delusion that it is a safe drug. Only the other day I saw a post entitled “Cannabis is Safer”, leading me to ask, “Safer than what? A hollow tip bullet fired directly into the brain?” Marijuana kills plain and simple! It may not be your first hit, or your second, or even your hundredth but, if you continue to use this dangerous drug, you will eventually be forced to endure the tragic consequences. Consider the number of celebrities who have died from marijuana abuse:
GG Allin (musician, lead singer of The Murder Junkies)
Syd Barrett (founding member of the British rock band Pink Floyd)
John Belushi (actor, comedian)
Len Bias (basketball player)
Lenny Bruce (comedian)
Jeff Conaway (star of the hit television series Taxi)
Kurt Cobain (lead singer of Nirvana who committed suicide after years of struggling with marijuana addiction)
John Entwistle (bass player for The Who)
Chris Farley (comedian, star of Saturday Night Live)
Greg Giraldo (comedian)
Corey Haim (star of The Lost Boys and long-term “partner” of fellow actor Corey Feldman)
Jimi Hendrix (guitarist, singer)
Janis Joplin (singer)
Heath Ledger (“The Joker”)
Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez (member of 90’s girl group TLC)
Brittany Murphy (actress)
Keith Moon (drummer for The Who)
Jim Morrison (lead singer of The Doors)
Dana Plato (Kimberly Drummond of the TV show Diff’rent Strokes)
Elvis Presley (“The King”)
River Phoenix (actor and brother of Joaquin)
John Ritter (Jack Tripper of ABC TV’s Three’s Company)
Anna Nicole Smith (Playboy model and reality TV star)
Layne Stayley (lead singer of Alice in Chains)
And the list goes on and on.
Even scarier than the musings of the self-destructive fools here who proclaim the wonders of frying their brains on marijuana is the fact that many states are considering decriminalizing or outright legalizing the deadly herb, a move that will surely fill local morgues to capacity with the bodies of our children. Let’s not forget that marijuana doesn’t always just kill the user. While high on marijuana, Sex Pistols’ bassist Sid Vicious stabbed his girlfriend Nancy Spungen to death before dying of a marijuana overdose himself while awaiting trial for the murder. Brynn Hartman, wife of Newsradio star Phil Hartman, shot her husband to death then turned the gun on herself while under the influence of marijuana. Then of course there’s WWE wrestler and noted pothead Chris Benoit who murdered his entire family then took his own life while stoned on the evil weed. Is this the kind of tragedy we want to perpetuate? If anything, states and the Federal government should be pushing for stiffer penalties on the use and distribution of marijuana, not encouraging it.
Let us learn from the tragic mistakes of celebrities like Amy Winehouse. Any way you slice it or dice it, marijuana is bad. At the very best, its habitual users will kill themselves. At the very worst they will take one or more innocent non-users with them.