No, Cannabis Isn’t the Harmless Substance You Think It Is

Abusing the herb ruined my life

Benny Carts
Published in
7 min readMay 2, 2022


Image by Dmytro Tyshchenko

Before I begin bashing Bob Marley’s favorite pastime, let me make my position clear: I am staunchly pro-legalization. More to the point, I am in favor of legalizing all drugs. Does this mean I think all drugs are safe? Or that we should start handing out Hunter.S.Thompson-style suitcases at bar mitzvahs?

Of course not.

The issue is people can easily procure drugs if they want them, regardless of said drugs' legal status. The fact the drug underworld is flourishing, and will continue to flourish, proves the deterrents don’t work. As the Global Commission on Drug Policy pointed out back in 2011, the war on drugs has been a catastrophic failure:

“The global war on drugs is a failure and should be replaced by decriminalization strategies grounded in science, health, security and human rights, according to a recent report by the Global Commission on Drug Policy.”

If history has shown us anything, it’s that large amounts of people will continue to use recreational drugs. Being able to control and regulate these substances would take power away from cartels, ensure the drugs didn’t contain dangerous components like fentanyl, and result in new streams of tax revenue.

Have I made myself clear?


Now let's talk about how cannabis ruined my life.

Photo by the author: me smoking a blunt at 15

The beginning of a love-hate relationship

My first encounter with weed happened when I was 14. I was at the local park with a couple of mates and, after gingerly taking my first toke, I coughed my lungs out (usual for first-timers). I kept smoking, and coughing then proceeded to giggle incessantly before floating home to eat a lot of food. No anxiety, no paranoia — just a warm, fuzzy, giggly feeling.

I then started smoking weed more regularly—mainly “soapbar”(a kind of cheap, mild hashish). My mate and I would watch movies, play computer games, and generally have a good time.



Benny Carts