As some of you may already know, Japan is left far behind from the current global trends with regard to cannabis. This anti-drug video shows just how archaic some of the views held in Japan about cannabis really are, and therefore we have shared the clip with a few medical professionals and activists in the US and asked them for comments.
“The Tokyo government has created a seductive, but misleading message for children about cannabis by expropriating the medium anime. One needs only to examine the statistics on millions of deaths worldwide due to alcohol and tobacco usage to realize the false propaganda in comparison to cannabis, which has very limited and avoidable toxicity and cannot produce death by overdose. No one is suggesting that children smoke, but properly constituted oral medicines produced from cannabis have proven safety and efficacy in treating nausea associated with chemotherapy, spasticity in multiple sclerosis, severe epilepsy syndromes and adjunctive benefits in chronic pain. A better message for youth would be that cannabis is a potential medicine for severe illness. This approach will be accurate and provide less attractive to young people.”
“By lumping cannabis, which has never killed anyone, together with narcotics and hard drugs, the Japanese government is actually promoting the use of dangerous drugs. Because when someone finds out the truth that cannabis is not harmful or dangerous they may not believe anything the “authorities” say about drugs that are truly harmful and will, therefore, be more likely to experiment with dangerous substances.”
“Running commercials oriented toward children to say no to dangerous drugs is good policy. However, the information provided must be respectful of how marijuana has not been scientifically shown to be a dangerous drug. In fact, in America and a number of other countries, it is recognized as serving a medical purpose. It is even allowed for adults, not children, to safely use it for recreational purposes as long as they do not drive a vehicle under its influence. Lumping false information about the dangers of marijuana weakens the credibility of messages that also try to discourage dangerous drugs. The advertisement that I saw makes that error and hurts the otherwise good advice that it provides.”
“While children should certainly refrain from using cannabis, the information contained in the 1 minute Stop Drugs Movie portraying cannabis as a dangerous drug is inaccurate, a gross exaggeration, and constitutes “reefer madness.” Cannabis is a relatively benign therapeutic natural substance that is currently being used recreationally by millions of Americans with negligible negative impact. The people of Japan would be better served with truthful educational materials about cannabis, the endocannabinoid system, and its actual positive and negative potential.”
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