Alcohol vs marijuana is a constant argument between my friends and I. I find it strange that there are people who like alcohol more than weed. Majority of people I ask what they prefer, they usually say weed. That seems like the most logical choice, as weed is a positive high, whether you end up with couch lock or you’re a productive pot head. Alcohol never seems to end well. Either you’re throwing up or getting in to fights with your friends about who owed what on the tab. Granted there are some people that handle their liquor extremely well, but almost everyone ends up the same sloppy mess after enough cocktails.

I’ve been a bartender for four years now and have worked in every bar imaginable, from shady little dives to nightclubs and I just don’t see the fun in drinking until you’re sick. The decline of a customer throughout the night is sometimes overwhelmingly sad. There was one gentleman I used to serve. He drank Canadian Club on the rocks and he would sit at the bar for hours, progressively getting more intoxicated. He was a smart man when he first walked in; articulate, interesting, and polite. But as the night progressed, his intelligence faded. His speech would slur until you could no longer understand him. The people around him would move away and avoid looking in his direction. It was a sad transformation to watch and even more so to advocate. But seeing as how I have bills to pay and I happen to be good at serving drinks, I had to serve him.

Look at the statistics. How many people have died from marijuana consumption? Not a single one. According to saferchoice.org, as well as CDC, there are 37,000 deaths ANNUALLY from alcohol related incidents. That number is incredibly high for a legal substance that is served in ever single country in the world. You can’t overdose on marijuana. There has never been a single death reported due to a marijuana overdose. However, the effects of alcohol abuse are long lasting, painful, and in extreme cases, fatal. The Scientific Research Society states that alcohol is one of the most toxic drugs.

The physical effects of marijuana don’t even compare to the effects of alcohol abuse. It damages the liver, the brain, the heart, and pretty much everything else. Alcohol has been linked to cancer and brain damage on numerous occasions. Marijuana has been shown to have neuroprotective tendencies, contrary to the popular belief that weed kills brain cells.

It is extremely difficult to convince people of these cold hard facts for some reason. Probably because the alcohol addicts are convinced that their substance of choice is considered “legal” by the government and therefore, safe. Alcohol is a controllable substance, monitored by state institutions and the government. Marijuana can be cultivated anywhere, by anybody and that in itself makes it unsafe because there is no control. Hopefully, someday soon, people will open their minds and understand that alcohol is a danger to everyone, not just the people who drink it. At the same time, marijuana is only dangerous to your grocery bill.