Last Updated:July 28 @ 12:18 pm

Obama: 'I smoked pot as a kid'

By Associated Press

WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama said he doesn't think marijuana is more dangerous than alcohol, "in terms of its impact on the individual consumer."

"As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life. I don't think it is more dangerous than alcohol," the president said an interview with "The New Yorker" magazine.

Smoking marijuana is "not something I encourage, and I've told my daughters I think it's a bad idea, a waste of time, not very healthy," Obama said.

Obama's administration has given states permission to experiment with marijuana regulation, and laws recently passed in Colorado and Washington legalizing marijuana recently went into effect. The president said it was important for the legalization of marijuana to go forward in those states to avoid a situation in which only a few are punished while a large portion of people have broken the law at one time or another.

The president said he is troubled at the disproportionate number of arrests and imprisonments of minorities for marijuana use. "Middle-class kids don't get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do," he said. "And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties."

He said in the interview that users shouldn't be locked up for long stretches of time when people writing drug laws "have probably done the same thing."

But Obama urged a cautious approach to changing marijuana laws, saying that people who think legalizing pot will solve social problems are "probably overstating the case."

"And the experiment that's going to be taking place in Colorado and Washington is going to be, I think, a challenge," the president said.

Ethan Nadelmann, the executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance praised Obama's words, saying his use of the word "important" about the new Colorado and Washington laws "really puts the wind in the sails of the movement to end marijuana prohibition.

Critics of the new laws raise concerns about public health and law enforcement, asking whether wide availability of the drug will lead to more underage drug use, more cases of driving while high and more crime.

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Obama: 'I smoked pot as a kid', 4.0 out of 10 based on 46 ratings





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48 Comments

  1. joejacksonComment by joejackson
    January 20, 2014 @ 8:48 am

    If it so good let the Obama’s smoke it with their children as well as their drug using friends of the 60′s throughout their administration.

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    Rating: 4.1/5 (45 votes cast)
    • pistol packing mamaComment by txgoatlady
      January 20, 2014 @ 8:53 am

      I wouldn’t be in the least bit surprised to find out he is still smoking pot. I’m not convinced he has quit smoking cigarettes. And don’t forget, he also tried crack as a “kid”. I guess a stoner like him is correct about being a hypocrite by enforcing drug laws, but isn’t that a good reason not to elect stoners?

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      Rating: 4.7/5 (95 votes cast)
    • inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
      January 20, 2014 @ 9:35 am

      “He said in the interview that users shouldn’t be locked up for long stretches of time when people writing drug laws “have probably done the same thing.”"

      The obvious solution is to NEVER elect people whose brains were altered by mind altering drugs to EVER be elected to positions where they can write 2800 page laws that make absolutely no sense, and are totally unworkable. The only “Probability” part of the “Have probably done the same thing” is if you vote for a liberal progressive Democrat, you PROBABLY are dealing with a drug altered drug deprived mind, soon to be followed by a wealth deprived nation where the drug abusers never get locked up, just your money in failing social experiments that aquire in perpetuity a life of their own.

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      Rating: 4.7/5 (50 votes cast)
    • GordonComment by Gordon
      January 20, 2014 @ 11:03 am

      This probably explains why he is America’s worst president. He’s brain dead.

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      Rating: 4.8/5 (63 votes cast)
    • cgretiredComment by cgretired
      January 20, 2014 @ 11:40 am

      I underwent unscheduled and random drug testing while on active duty for over 26 years. Additionally, a condition of employment in my current job as a Government Contractor, I must undergo an initial drug test and sign an agreement to accept random drug tests from time to time, again, unscheduled.

      Note that I said active duty and as a government contractor. Ohbama works for the Government – some would say he IS the Government. So, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Drug test the SOB! If he tests positive – do as the government would do to me – throw the SOB out. Period.

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    • justme33Comment by justme33
      January 20, 2014 @ 11:59 pm

      Gordon… probably???

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      Rating: 5.0/5 (3 votes cast)
  2. jimbo999Comment by jimbo999
    January 20, 2014 @ 9:08 am

    Yeah. Obama says, “I smoked pot as a kid, and it didn’t hurt me any.”

    Was it the pot, the whiskey or the cocaine that caused all of his brain damage?

    All the stoners say the same thing. “It didn’t hurt me any.” then they have to have a teleprompter or note cards so they can remember what to say. And when they forget to read the notes or the screen, they always say something extremely stupid. They also become jaded to what is happening around them and have very little conscience left, like taking a nap during a crisis, or going off to play golf, or taking a vacation as people all around them are losing their jobs and health insurance.

    When you take drugs as a child, you never grow into an adult.
    .

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    • pistol packing mamaComment by txgoatlady
      January 20, 2014 @ 9:29 am

      Good one!

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    • mjz4043Comment by mjz4043
      January 20, 2014 @ 9:44 pm

      I never tried the stuff…no interest. In spite of my messed up parents, and I left that house over 50 years ago, I rather enjoy reality and want to take nothing to alter that, BUT, that being said, I do think they should legalize it. It is nonsense to take up good jail and prison space with people who have a tiny bit of it on them. I cannot imagine it being any worse than alcohol, but having never studied it, can’t say for sure. I do know this, a friend of mine with very severe arthritis (she is 76) smokes it and I was shocked when she told me that, but she says she started to help with her pain. Fine by me. But when I told another friend who is in AGONY with spinal pain to find some and try it, he was horrified that I would mention such a thing. I do not see how smoking that stuff and getting relief from pain can be any worse that the steroid shots I had to have for pain for my damaged shoulder or some of the OTC stuff for pain that damages the liver.

      I always wondered if that stuff doesn’t have much the same stuff in it that regular tobacco has and could cause lung cancer, but I have no idea and have never seen anything. Plus you know they use all sorts of chemicals on it when they grow it.

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  3. braintrust49Comment by braintrust49
    January 20, 2014 @ 9:27 am

    Seems POTUS’ opinion on weed is contrary to the government he works for:

    http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

    It has been my observation that those who smoke weed disagree with any attempt to regulate it or criticize its use.

    Fact is, it is pretty bad; I have never heard someone say that a chronic weed user is a “functional” pot-head.

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    • ksr1Comment by ksr1
      January 20, 2014 @ 10:01 am

      @braintrust, I agree with all you said here except: Instead of “the government he works for” should be “the government dictates over”, a small but important difference :-(

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    • braintrust49Comment by braintrust49
      January 20, 2014 @ 10:16 am

      @KSR1: I stand corrected; it should have said “…the government he is ‘supposed’ to work for…”

      If only this dude in the White House would just shut up and he’d be better off; we don’t care about his opinions on pending criminal cases, drug use, police activities or sports teams.

      Perhaps he should concentrate on being the President of the United States and being a World Leader, as his predecessors did.

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      Rating: 4.9/5 (34 votes cast)
    • momma4285Comment by momma4285
      January 20, 2014 @ 10:43 am

      Not that I, in any way support our liar-in-thief…

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      Rating: 4.8/5 (24 votes cast)
    • knanComment by knan
      January 20, 2014 @ 2:13 pm

      isn’t EVERYTHING this sob does contrary to the laws set forth by this government?

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      Rating: 4.8/5 (21 votes cast)
  4. Think About ItComment by Think About It
    January 20, 2014 @ 9:57 am

    This explains a lot. He smokes, drinks, and smoked pot.

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  5. miniverComment by miniver
    January 20, 2014 @ 10:02 am

    Ah, Barack/Barry Obama/Soetoro, Non-American in almost every meaningful way, yet somehow still President: if that’s all we had to worry about with you, we wouldn’t be very worried at all…

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  6. Antiquityart.comComment by Antiquityart.com
    January 20, 2014 @ 10:40 am

    Truth be told, same as me Barack.

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  7. lkplumleyComment by lkplumley
    January 20, 2014 @ 10:45 am

    Hmm. Well, I guess I am the only one who sort of agrees with him, even though I am a lifelong Conservative. I would dare say that most people, certainly many, between the ages of 16 and 70 have tried pot at a point in their lives. Most have gone on to lead productive, good lives. They would not want their kids to use it and would even deny that they did, but in truth, most people just consider it an embarrassing youthful indiscretion. After a lifetime of observing the attempts of society to get rid of pot, I am finally persuaded that this is a battle we will never win. I agreed with Carter when he decriminalized it and I find myself rather relieved that people in Colorado will buy from a safely regulated industry rather than a smalltime criminal. Mind you, I am NOT an admirer of Obama’s at all, but I think that most sensible people can agree that alcohol is way worse than marijuana in terms of impairment. Yet we allow alcohol because we trust most people to be sensible with it and when a drunk driver kills or injures someone, thankfully today they are harshly punished. It is no longer just a slap on the wrist. Time may prove this experiment wrong and perhaps some kids may become serious stoners that otherwise would not have. I just feel like taking the criminal element out of it is a good approach to at least try. I DO NOT support this approach with drugs, but marijuana is pretty lightweight and we have been trying unsuccessfully to stop its usage for many decades. There are a lot of people locked up and branded for life for a marijuana crime and frankly, we could use that prison space for hard criminals. I just think this country has way bigger issues to deal with, in large part because of Obama. Time will tell, I guess.

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    • ksr1Comment by ksr1
      January 20, 2014 @ 10:55 am

      @lkplumley, Agree … I too DO NOT really support the use of weed however, to have a legal venue for the distribution does ensure some form of quality control and provides a tax stream by removing out of the underground network. To have the courts plugged up with low level things related to pot costs too much, it also gives the LEOs more time to concentrate on larger more dangerous things going on. It comes down to priorities and budgets.

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    • GordonComment by Gordon
      January 20, 2014 @ 11:09 am

      Not to be disrespectful, but I fear that, but I fear there may be a bit too much leftist media propaganda here.

      Interesting article in Chemical and Eng. News about 10 years ago showed that the 7 most toxic and addictive substances in Cigarettes are also in Pot. The only difference is that in pot they are 5 times more concentrated. Being an Analytical Chemist of 35 years I find this very revealing. But, in attempting to talk with the growers they constantly deny this because “we’ve got our mind made up, don’t confuse us with the facts.”
      Living next to a pot grower I also have to smell the stench of the trash as well as endure the constant attempted robbers, gun shootings to protect their garbage, trained guard dogs that break through my fences and kill my live stock, and incendiary devices planted on my property when I complain to the police. I would also like to inform you of a recent article (one of many – http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06… which stated that these farms are having strong negative ecological effects caused by erosion, destruction of natural vegetation and wildlife as well as permanently contaminated lands and water tables (especially with heavy metals like lead and Cobalt). But, that isn’t important. Who gives a s%$t about anything other than “ME” whether it be ecology or neighbors. All we want is the money – legal or illegal.

      Ot leaves nothing but destruction in it’s path.

      Also take a look at this article from the government. Drug Facts Marijuana http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/marijuana

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  8. middlegroundComment by middleground
    January 20, 2014 @ 11:06 am

    As one official said of “good pot” during the Viet Nam Era; “it was laced with heroin.” But as another later reported the tar content in a “joint” is now high enough that “good pot” doesn’t need to add heroin to get the “effect”. Whatever the effect is, if you see someone with that vacant look of a “mind gone elsewhere”, you can probably guess they are enjoying the thought that “smoking pot” is a great way to relax, but even as the federal government mounts ever more restrictions on the use of tobacco and nicotine, the “pot propagandists” are trying to tell us “pot” has no harmful health effects. C…, this nonsense reminds me of those who switched to cigars and chewing tobacco because no one had written about them and cigarettes were being labeled “cancer sticks”. Until every accident is investigated to determine whether “those” involved were high, we will have no idea of the accident risk. We should, however, now be able to see how those with long-term “pot” use may have health problems directly related to the use, and as “pot” affects mental abilities, it may show up is such indirect ways as early Alzheimer’s or lung cancer. Perhaps with the license to use “medical marijuana” should come obligation for a complete autopsy.

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  9. hanginjudgeComment by hanginjudge
    January 20, 2014 @ 11:18 am

    OK so BO is living proof that doobies destroy brain cells. What more evidence does one need? BO the poster child for stupidity!

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  10. calgal2Comment by calgal2
    January 20, 2014 @ 11:23 am

    “The president said it was important for the legalization of marijuana to go forward in those states to avoid a situation in which only a few are punished while a large portion of people have broken the law at one time or another.”

    Is anyone else shaking their heads over how ridiculous this line of reasoning is? What if someone said this about speeding or drinking and driving? A lot of people are guilty of speeding from time to time but not all speeders are caught. So I guess we should just legalize speeding. A lot of people have had a drink or two and driven home but not everyone who has had some alcohol and drives is caught. So I guess we need to legalize drinking and driving. This guy has so trivialized the office of the President of the United States and everyone in the world knows it but his main stream media minions who would follow him regardless of how long it takes him to bring this country to its knees. The only thing he is trying to improve is his golf handicap!

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    Rating: 4.8/5 (36 votes cast)
    • BillzillaComment by Billzilla
      January 20, 2014 @ 7:59 pm

      The President also said: “Middle-class kids don’t get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do,” he said. “And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties.”

      The President is admitting to us something that we all knew or suspected: Justice isn’t blind because it can be bought.

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    • myopinionComment by myopinion
      January 21, 2014 @ 9:16 am

      “Middle-class kids don’t get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do,” he said. “And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties.”

      Isn’t this racial profiling? Is not the Attorney General getting ready to lay down new guidelines prohibiting this act? The president is sounding extremely racist in his comments.

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      Rating: 5.0/5 (3 votes cast)
  11. dadComment by dad
    January 20, 2014 @ 12:02 pm

    Obama would be the poster child of why not to partake of drugs…
    Besides, who would follow this guy’s advice?

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  12. combatvet52Comment by combatvet52
    January 20, 2014 @ 12:15 pm

    I’m just wondering what the hell is he smoking now ??

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  13. lakeworthcaneComment by lakeworthcane
    January 20, 2014 @ 12:20 pm

    Critics are worried about, “more underage drug use, more cases of driving while high and more crime”?

    What?

    Underage people who smoke pot can and will get it and smoke it whether it’s legal or not. In fact, legalizing it will probably, over time, make it harder for underage people to get.

    Consider the same situation with alcohol. If the average urban or suburban teen can’t get booze, he or she can’t sneak off to the hills and buy a jug o’ squeezins, or go to the school parking lot and buy a six pack: not as easily as he or she can buy marijuana the same way.

    Now, the only way to get marijuana is illegally (except in Colorado). If it’s legalized, it’s reasonable to assert that urban and suburban illegal marijuana markets will eventually dry up because so many customers will be buying it legally. The only illegal market will be teens; likely not a large enough market to justify smuggling or illegal growing.

    Legalizing marijuana possession and use is arguably the best way to make sure fewer teens have access to it. It won’t be any more accessible than alcohol anyway, and since alcohol prohibition went to its just and righteous grave, cross-border booze smuggling has become relatively rare.

    Teens can still get booze, but they either steal it or get someone to buy it for them. They usually don’t buy it in school parking lots and alleyways from gun-toting smugglers. I suspect that if marijuana prohibition laws are also put to death, the situation with teens getting marijuana will be the same way; they’ll steal it from their parents or pay someone to buy it in a store. But they certainly won’t have increased access to it.

    The same is true about more “driving-while-high” concerns. I don’t think legalizing marijuana will increase incidents of people “driving while high.” People who get marijuana illegally are more likely to “drive while high” than someone who goes to a store, buys it legally, and brings it home. In any case, legalizing marijuana will not increase incidents of people “driving while high.”

    As for “more-crime” concerns: that’s just dumb. Jails and courtrooms are full of people who’ve committed no other crime than using or possessing marijuana. If marijuana use and possession are decriminalized, we’ll see a drop in arrests and incarcerations, not an increase.

    I think conservatives had better be very careful with this issue. Obama is likely baiting conservatives to make horse’s behinds out of themselves by contradicting him. That’d be the stupidest thing conservatives could do because the court of public opinion has given its verdict about laws criminalizing marijuana use and possession, and the verdict is that the laws are wrong and need to be stricken down. If conservatives disagree, just to be gadflies and needle Obama, they’ll be shooting themselves in their feet, and it’ll show up in the next election.

    For the record, the same is true about income redistribution. The court of public opinion has ruled on that, too, and found that the nation’s wealth is stupidly chunked into the hands of too few people, and this is true. Too much of the nation’s wealth has accumulated in too few hands. If conservatives dare say otherwise, they’ll get their butts kicked in the next election.

    Be sensible. Put the government’s stupid statistics, or whatever statistics you can drum up, in perspective. Marijuana is not as harmful as alcohol, nor has it caused as much social and economic damage, and if I have to, I can prove it. For all of that, someone who’s taken a “safe, legal dose” of over-the-counter cough syrup is as dangerous, if not more dangerous, behind the wheel of a car as someone who’s smoked a small amount of marijuana; and I can make a pretty sound argument that working 12 hours a day for six days a week for 35 years is more likely to ruin somebody’s health and family, and more likely to put somebody in an early grave, than routine marijuana use.

    Do not argue against the legalization of marijuana. You’ll look and sound stupid, and that’s likely what Obama–by making these statements–hopes you’ll do.

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    • zman755Comment by zman755
      January 20, 2014 @ 12:29 pm

      Well said!

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    • miniverComment by miniver
      January 20, 2014 @ 2:37 pm

      Hear, hear, and well said, sir! One need not be an advocate of pot use to properly skewer the evils and unintended consequences of Prohibition. At the end of the day, that’s what it’s really all about.

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  14. sacheveraljames42Comment by sacheveraljames42
    January 20, 2014 @ 12:29 pm

    Confirmation that drug use fries one’s brain and turns them into government dependent socialists who believe in everything is beautiful and that the word President means King and not an elected representative of the people.
    I think the Constitution should be changed based on Mr. Obama’s despicable performance as a President. The losing candidate of the opposition should automatically become the Vice-President. That way, we would first know that the candidate really wanted to serve the people of the country and did not want the position just for power and chuck the Constitution and second, the Vice-President would be more than just an empty position without any ability to speak out or keep a President from being accountable.

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  15. jimComment by james
    January 20, 2014 @ 1:08 pm

    So, Obama admits to breaking the law as a young man. At least he’s consistent because he’s still breaking the law.

    He also said that smoking marijuana is a waste of time. He knows a lot about wasting time. So, I’ll take his word on that one.

    Of course he has to bring race into the conversation by implying that only minority kids get arrested for violating marijuana laws. As a retired cop I can assure you that this is an inaccurate statement.

    What a guy. He goes AWOL and allows an ambassador and four others to be massacred.

    He sends his IRS goon Squad after people that differ with him.

    He runs guns to drug cartels.

    He ignores the constitution.

    Hey, but he’s right in there assuring us that he’s a law breaker, something we already knew.

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  16. Eagle525Comment by eagle525
    January 20, 2014 @ 2:31 pm

    Smoked Weed as a kid…. and brain dead ever since … and the poor minorities are again singled out as victims. That’s pure Obama speak.

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  17. moonshineComment by moonshine
    January 20, 2014 @ 3:30 pm

    Obama not only smoked it, he also sold it to his fellow students. Its the only business experience that he has on his resume. Regrettably, it was illegal, but that didn’t matter to him then or now.
    I suspect that he still smoking it. That is the only rational explanation for his delusional behavior.

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  18. ggfilthyComment by ggfilthy
    January 20, 2014 @ 3:42 pm

    You know…I was going to pipe in (excuse the pun) …and I ..DO.. love a good cheap shot…but…This topic is just to easy! Nah!

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  19. gileyComment by giley
    January 20, 2014 @ 4:37 pm

    I think Obama was the leader/president of the Choom Pot Smoking Gang in Hawaii. As a fake leader he should at least discourage kids from experimenting with another intoxicant. A vast majority of hard drug users start with marijuana.

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    • combatvet52Comment by combatvet52
      January 20, 2014 @ 5:43 pm

      I had a very dear friend who’s son and daughter both overdosed and they started with weed,
      how in hell can they promote this killer drug, the big boss admitted doing it when he was a boy what a role model for todays young kids.

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  20. prairelivingComment by praireliving
    January 20, 2014 @ 8:45 pm

    “I smoked pot as a kid”, Barack Obama. Well now, doesn’t that just explain a lot and give a good warning why it isn’t a good idea to do it?

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  21. guidoComment by guido
    January 20, 2014 @ 9:19 pm

    Obama said: “…not something I encourage, and I’ve told my daughters I think it’s a bad idea, a waste of time, not very healthy,” and yet “Obama’s administration has given states permission to experiment with marijuana regulation, and laws recently passed in Colorado and Washington legalizing marijuana recently went into effect.” Once again Obama can’t make a sound decision. If he believes it is so unhealthy, why is he allowing the states to “experiment.” But how quickly his administration interjects themselves when the citizens of a state votes to retain marriage between a man and a woman. I think Obama and his administration is smoking the stuff.

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    • combatvet52Comment by combatvet52
      January 21, 2014 @ 6:45 am

      guido he’s smoking more than weed

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    • KBBComment by KBB
      January 25, 2014 @ 7:17 pm

      …If he believes it is so unhealthy, why is he allowing the states to “experiment.”….

      Obama is fine with the states experimenting with pot, because it makes his agenda to fundamentally change the country so much easier. A population of dopeheads are way easier to trick and overwhelm than those who are dope-free, clear-headed and alert.

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  22. oldsaltydawgComment by oldsaltydawg
    January 20, 2014 @ 9:28 pm

    Given that it has been proven that people who smoked pot then quit lost massive amounts of brain cells ****** must have smoked several tons of Pot as he was growing up. ****** is an IDIOT who LIES by breathing. He is also a TRAITOR and TERRORIST. ******’s use of pot as a child and a young man in College has left him a BRAIN DEAD MORON who can only LIE about everything. So to all those out there thinking about smoking Pot you will very likely end up like ******.

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  23. joejacksonComment by joejackson
    January 21, 2014 @ 7:22 am

    Obama had a spoiled childhood mentored by his Marxist grandparents in Hawaii while his Mother , a true 60′s ****, had Barrack with some Kenyan ne’er do well who never saw Barry more than twice in his life. Barry never had to work, he used the “system” just as his mother did and his college is tainted by not revealing his records. He must have been taught how to lie at Harvard since most Harvard graduates lie incessantly.

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  24. KBBComment by KBB
    January 25, 2014 @ 7:12 pm

    Obama smoked pot AS A KID?! That’s rich. From his occasional droopy-eyed look and his giddy behavior at the podium, I’m pretty sure he still smokes it. Being a heavy pot smoker is what has caused him to be unable to string together 2 complete and coherent sentences without a teleprompter.

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    • ggfilthyComment by ggfilthy
      January 26, 2014 @ 7:43 am

      hey …you might be right…and all this time I thought it was because he is a Regressive Liberal Socialist Democrat (RLSD)…. with emphasis on the LSD!

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  25. mjz4043Comment by mjz4043
    January 26, 2014 @ 8:14 am

    What worries me is that as drugs have become more common in our society, more and more people are finding them acceptable and are rather blase about them. I kept my kids away from them by telling them we don’t know what this is doing to the offspring of users. We know just about everything we do affects our genetic makeup and when that changes, I am concerned for the next generation. But then….I absolutely detest taking anything the doctor prescribes.

    I don’t know if drugs are as big a problem for other countries as they are here, but as our educational system seems to be floundering, our societal values eroding and our family structure weakening, I think we need to reassess a lot of what we are doing and see if we can figure out the problems we are having with our youth.

    Then we have an idiot in our White House telling people of his illegal activities in a very off-hand way. If they expose these details, what other things are they keeping secret to cover their tracks like this man has done.

    The War on Drugs, the War on Poverty and the Dept of Education are JOKES…they have only made matters worse and used up a ton of money in the process.

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