We recently published the first in a series about what science says about marijuana. We also laid the facts bare: how you can’t trust just one study until other studies back it up. If you haven’t read our other article on the science of marijuana, we suggest going back and doing that now. We’ll continue to publish follow-ups until we’ve exhausted scientific material (and that’ll never happen). Here’s the next study!
The over 3,000-page research paper called the Indian Hemp Drugs Commission was published in 1894. It provided the testimony of nearly 1,200 people, including “doctors, coolies, yogis, fakirs, heads of lunatic asylums, bhang peasants, tax gatherers, smugglers, army officers, hemp dealers, ganja palace operators, and the clergy.”
Needless to say, it makes for a drug, albeit interesting, read — and it would remain an important authority on cannabis for decades.
However, the study was one of the first to suggest that moderate consumption of cannabis products probably wouldn’t cause any significant harm, and might even provide a few health benefits. It didn’t stop there. The commission also stated that to make illegal a product that caused no harm would be unjust.
The report said, “To forbid or even seriously restrict the use of so gracious an herb as hemp would cause widespread suffering and annoyance.”
However, it should be noted that the general rule of thumb here regarded “moderate use.” To consume more marijuana could potentially risk one’s health.
The report said, “Viewing the subject generally, it may be added that the moderate use of these drugs is the rule, and that the excessive use is comparatively exceptional. The moderate use practically produces no ill effects. In all but the most exceptional cases, the injury from habitual moderate use is not appreciable. The excessive use may certainly be accepted as very injurious, though it must be admitted that in many excessive consumers the injury is not clearly marked.”