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Wed, May 22

Commentary: Movement toward legal marijuana creates new PC affinity; dope smokers are ‘cannabis curious consumers’

In the 100 or more years that marijuana has been the recreational drug of choice for so many, it’s largely been dope smokers who have coined the many names by which marijuana is called: pot, dope, weed, schwag, grass, bud, ganja, reefer, bomb, etc, etc, etc. In the drug culture, those names were not considered derogatory, and in many cases were affectionately referred.

In the 100 or more years that marijuana has been the recreational drug of choice for so many, it’s largely been dope smokers who have coined the many names by which marijuana is called: pot, dope, weed, schwag, grass, bud, ganja, reefer, bomb, etc, etc, etc. In the drug culture, those names were not considered derogatory, and in many cases were affectionately referred.

The ongoing effort toward full legalization of marijuana has created a new hybrid of political correctness when it comes to the descriptors of pot.

Those who ascribe to such PC affinity will say I already crossed that line.

Ditto for the messages that came my way concerning our Friday story about the applicability of federal gun laws to those who hold medical marijuana cards. The story included a graphic with the title: “Weed or Guns.”

Some took offense. “You’re giving marijuana a bad name,” they claimed.

I beg to differ. In the 100 or more years that marijuana has been the recreational drug of choice for so many, it’s largely been dope smokers who have coined the many names by which marijuana is called: pot, dope, weed, schwag, grass, bud, ganja, reefer, bomb, etc, etc, etc. In the drug culture, those names were not considered derogatory, and in many cases were affectionately referred. Why else would they ask, “Do you know where I can get some good weed?”

As if there were any other kind.

Those who never took a puff -- much less never inhaled as a former U.S. president once claimed -- have never been preoccupied with coming up with new names for marijuana.

Now you will be accused of being politically incorrect when you use the very words to describe marijuana that were originally coined by the drug culture.

Just as The Verde Independent/Camp Verde Bugle was accused of giving pot a bad name last week by calling it “weed,” we’ve been equally besmirched for referring to it as marijuana.

A recent story about legal marijuana grow operations in the Verde Valley drew complaints from some who claimed “marijuana grow house” gives the business a bad name. The preferred nomenclature, they explained, is to call them “cannibas cultivation centers.”

And, according to a news release this week from the Southwest Cannabis Conference & Expo, the new politically correct way to refer to dope smokers is “cannabis curious consumers.”

Former Cottonwood City Council member Jesse Dowling is an adamant and well-researched advocate of legalized marijuana. He says the preferred describer of marijuana in this era is “Cannibas, with the added -Sativa or -Indica secondary portion that indicates the specific type of Cannibis depending on the forum of discussion.”

It bears emphasis, Dowling explains, that not everyone in the legal marijuana movement is so uptight over the words weed and pot, much less marijuana. “Several of the old 60’s/70’s era names such as pot or weed are still held onto by some out of affection for the past and those who struggled to exist under the stigma of prohibition. Honestly even the industry has its own internal divisions, as evidenced by the competing/conflicting ballot initiatives.”

As for the “marijuana word police” out there who insist the rest of us walk a fine line of political correctness, you definitely need to chill out.

A little reefer may be just what the doctor ordered for you.

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