Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Readership

mfranti asks:
I have a question for you. If I smoke pot in a foreign country where pot is legal and take a drug test for work 30 days later while the THC is still in my system,I did nothing illegal. discuss. should I be fired/not hired for drug use?

Well this is easy. The answer is 'NO'. The end.

But since I am not the boss of the world...

My guess is that many workplaces would expect you to take into account the length of time the drug will stay in your system and expect you to refrain even when on holiday in a country where it is legal! (Which I think is B.S.)

If I were the boss then 'No' because firstly I have no beef with pot and secondly I would want to respect your holiday indulgences. Oh, and thirdly the THC that would be left in your system 30 days later surely would have no real effect on your performance at work.

So yeah, I should be the boss of the world.

I'd like to see marijuana decriminalised and eventually legalised. Seriously, how is it any more harmful than cigarettes or alcohol or SUGAR for that matter!

Lastly... next time I expect an invite to said holiday destination with legalised green stuff.


  1. I respectfully disagree.

    While I agree that marijuana use/abuse is (probably) no more harmful than alcohol use/abuse, and criminalising its use does nothing to stem the problem, I wouldn't hire someone I knew to be abusing either substance.

    I used to live with someone who abused both. People who use marijuana and say it doesn't adversely affect their ability to drive, or make decisions etc etc are liars.

    I won't go as far to say marijuana breaks down families, because it's just a herb, it can't break up families any more than parsley can. (Coriander on the other hand is so vile I believe it very well could cause a family breakdown - especially if you put in it MY food!).

    I respect the right for companies and employers to test for marijuana use and make employment decisions based on the results. I wouldn't want my daughter working in the same place as the guy driving a forklift or a 40 tonne bulldozer high (or drunk. Or the guy blindly (mis)entering important drug testing data or anything else.

    If you choose to have a toke or two on your holiday, you accept the consequences of that, which may well be a missed job opportunity.

  2. TGIAA - I respectfully disagree with you. Getting high on vacation hardly constitutes "abuse" of marijuana. You initially write "use/abuse". It's not clear to me whether you are doing so to distinguish between the two or if you are conflating the two. But then you say you wouldn't hire someone who was abusing weed or alcohol. So, either way, your point seems a bit confused. Certainly, if someone is abusing a substance to an extent where it affects their work, it should be pretty obvious. And, that person should be evaluated based on their work, and not on what they do in their own time. In certain industries, one ought not wait until the adverse result occurs - ie., someone has been endangered. Perhaps testing makes sense in those instances. However, in the majority of fields this would not be the case and so firing someone whose work is not affected by occasional recreational use, is nothing more than a morality judgment and has no place in professional life. Nor does drug testing in such instances, where it constitutes nothing more than an unnecessary invasion of privacy.

    Also, coriander is divine.

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  4. Also, marijuana use/abuse is arguably (based on the scientific data) LESS harmful than alcohol use/abuse. The former seems to be (while perhaps habit-forming) non-addictive (from a chemical standpoint) while alcohol is quite clearly addictive.

    I think by your logic, one should be fired if one has a single beer in the evening or on the weekend. If testing for alcohol use days or weeks later were feasible, would you advocate for that?

  5. yeah, the main problem corporations/businesses have with cannabis is the same problem governments have with allowing it's use. certainly it's not the science (here's a good look at the benefits: http://norml.org/index.cfm?Group_ID=7002 science otherwise finds it hard to come up with negative affects). rather it seems, imo, that the drug encourages dissent. sure you'll get the odd no-hoper just lounging around all day smoking pot, but what were they going to be doing otherwise? for the most part pot smokers (not abusers) are hard working, contributing members of society, most of the ones I know anyway. they also happen to be, for the most part, where I like to stand politically and socially.

    as for the abuse factor, I wouldn't want to hire anyone that was over-indulgent of legal substances, like water or food, or coca-cola (I especially hate the coca-cola amatil company)

  6. My opinion is skewed by my past bad experience living with an abuser. I don't doubt that.

    When you have had someone affected by marijuana endanger your children's lives, you can't help it.

  7. I agree with Amy on the use/abuse argument. It became really obvious to me when debating the wonders and perils of pornography. Essentially it came down to abuse or addiction to pornography being the problem. Pornography itself is not necessarily bad, it is how you use/abuse/create it. And I think this translates to marijuana. The substance itself, as Mack Samaha points out, has all kinds of health benefits whereas the side-effects are poorly documented and seem to apply to abuse of the substance.

    A recreational user, like in the initial question, really isn’t bothering anyone and their work performance is not likely to be effected by it.

    I’m not a fan of people driving on pot but I’ve never tried it myself so what do I know.

    Totally understand your history living with a substance abuser TGIAA. I’ve never had to deal with that so I can’t imagine what it is like but I do understand that it would leave a person feeling unfavourable towards drugs.

    OH OH OH coriander!!!! do you like asian food TGIAA, it’s all over the place, so fresh and perky!

    I really like your comment Amy about a person being evaluated on their work and NOT what they do in their own time. There are so many things that can effect our performance – stress, sleep (lack of), family drama, drugs, sickness etc etc.

    The number of deaths each year from alcohol in Australia is 3,300. From cigarettes it’s 15,000!! Marijuana? 0.


    “On the scale of harmful substances, marijuana ranks fairly low. Tobacco and alcohol exact a far greater toll, between them accounting for some 12 per cent of global deaths. Even aspirin is credited with causing in the vicinity of 50 deaths a year in Australia alone. No deaths are attributable to marijuana.” http://www.cosmosmagazine.com/node/1441

  8. coriander tastes like soap. A little tiny bit in an asian meal ruins the whole thing. Like someone went and poured dishwashing liquid over it. i don't eat asian 'out'. i just make a stir-fry at home.

    And while we're on vile substances, mangoes smell and taste like vomit.

    Re the post. You smoke the drugs, you accept the consequences like a grown up.

  9. It's funny how what one person loves about food another one hates. The same goes for just about everything else in life though. Especially fantasies and aversions. What is highly erotic to one is a complete turn off to another.

    As for drugs I guess we all have to deal with the consequences like adults but it would be nice to see some more sensible changes regarding regulation and legality.

    Now I'm gonna go burn one down ;)