Episode 355 Raymond Wiggins Discussing the Impact of Marijuana Use Transcript

This transcript is from episode 355 with guest Raymond Wiggins.

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Hey, everybody. Welcome back to Drive On. I’m your host, Scott DeLuzio. And today my guest is Dr. Raymond Wiggins. He’s here today to discuss the often unspoken harms of marijuana as it’s become more and more common for people to use it, especially with several states legalizing its [00:02:00] use. I thought it was important to share some of the lesser talked about issues with marijuana, because it seems like everything that you hear about is how, You know, it’s been legalized and lots of people are advocating for the uses, use of it. Um, but you know, with no talk of the downsides, it, um, isn’t really a balanced conversation. So, um, welcome to the show, Raymond. I’m really glad to have you here.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Hey, great to be here. Thank you so much for having me, Scott.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, you bet. Um, so tell us a little bit about your background and, uh, kind of what got you into, uh, you know, what you’re doing today.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Well, I’m an oral and maxillofacial surgeon, and we’re kind of the bridge between medicine and dentistry. I’m actually licensed to, to practice dentistry and medicine. And I’ve practiced for about 30 years at this point, um, almost 30 years. And I’ve performed over 27, 000 sedations at this point in my career.

Um, almost all of [00:03:00] those are, are general anesthetics, um, and I’ve devoted most of, or, or much of, of my time for the past couple of years to, uh, educating the public about the dangers of marijuana. And, and the way I got into this, it’s very personal to me. Um, I have three close relatives who died at a very young age, and I have absolutely no doubt that they would be with us still today.

Um, had it not been for marijuana, and one of these, uh, relatives died, uh, just a couple of years ago, uh, of a sudden heart attack, and he had been a very heavy marijuana smoker for almost 30 years, now thankfully, uh, just before, uh, he passed, uh, uh, about a year or so before he passed, he, he stopped smoking, but, um, it had done the damage already.

And then I also have a close family member, uh, a great young man, uh, who went to college, got in with a group of guys who were smoking marijuana. And he had never smoked it before, but he saw these guys [00:04:00] seem to be doing okay. Uh, nobody seemed to be having any problems, so he started smoking it with them, and after just a few times, he developed a severe psychosis.

He was having paranoid delusions, he thought people were chasing him, so he ran and got in his car, um, and started driving, and, uh, he saw pretty quickly that he wasn’t doing too well, so he abandoned his car and, and ran to the nearest building, which was a convenience store, and the clerk there, uh, Saw that he wasn’t doing well and took his phone and called this young man’s mother and called 9 1 1.

And when the paramedics and police got there, they took him to a hospital and he was diagnosed with marijuana induced psychosis. He had lost all touch with reality. Um, and doctors told his, his family that he may never be the same. And, uh, unfortunately he was, well, fortunately he was released from the hospital eventually, but unfortunately he was never able to return to school.

[00:05:00] That’s the personal side. And then the professional side, um, I see my patients, uh, have a pattern of anxiety, uh, whenever they smoke marijuana. It’s something that people think that it helps with anxiety, but when people come down from marijuana, they don’t understand that. That it’s actually increasing their anxiety.

Um, and, and then my patients also, and not just me, but this is, uh, a very big study that, that came out, uh, a couple of years ago now showed that, that we need to use about three times the propofol. To do the type of anesthetic that we do, uh, as oral and maxillofacial surgeons and, and really anyone who does outpatient anesthetics, uh, use propofol, and we have to use about three times as much in these patients.

And then also the American Society of Anesthesiologists, uh, says that it takes about 60 percent more pain medicine afterwards, after surgery to keep. Marijuana users comfortable compared to those who don’t use marijuana and people think well marijuana [00:06:00] helps with pain Well when you’re on it, yeah, it may make you not feel like you have pain But when you come down from it, there’s what’s called hyperalgesia You’re gonna have more pain and the American Society of Anesthesiologists backs that up.

So seeing that the devastating effects really and even deadly effects And my patients, my family and my friends, I began investigating and what I found really shocked me.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. So, I mean, that’s kind of a, you know, interesting background. Some of those things that, that you mentioned, I, I had never heard of. I’m, I’m not, um, you know, uh, too intimately involved, obviously, in the research like you are, uh, you know, to, uh, to understand all of this stuff. So, I’m not a doctor or anything like that.

So, uh, none of the advice I, none of the things that I say on here should be taken as, as advice, I should say, as far as a medical, uh, side of things. Um, but so, so these events that [00:07:00] took place, the, the folks that you knew and even on your professional side, it’s kind of prompted your investigation into this.


Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Correct.

Scott DeLuzio: So in your investigation and your research, um, in addition to the. Personal experiences that you’ve, you’ve seen from individuals that you knew, whether it’s professionally or personally. Um, what, what kind of evidence did you discover that kind of, um, kind of prompted you to be like, let’s throw up some red flags here and say, hey, this maybe isn’t the best thing to be doing.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Yeah. When, when I started looking into the literature, when I very first started looking, um, you know, you see all the things on the front, you know, the first page of, of Google and, and that, that type of thing. But when I really started investigating. The medical side of things, um, I saw that there were so many things that I didn’t understand.

The, the, the problems with, [00:08:00] with the brain, um, you know, we all know that it, it causes, uh, a, a short term, uh, problem with the brain. It, it changes the way that, that we think for a short period of time for, for those who use it. Uh, but what, what I didn’t understand were, were the long term effects on, on the brain, such as Uh, Decreased IQ, um, all of the studies that, that look into, to young people when they’re in school, how much worse they do in school, um, and then you start looking at, at the heart effects.

That’s, that’s probably the biggest one, that one, along with schizophrenia, which we’ll talk about in, in a, in a moment, but the, the heart effects, I had no idea. that marijuana could cause such major effects. Um, if you smoke marijuana for the first hour, you have a 4. 8 times risk of a heart attack. Um, and for two hours, it’s a 1.

7 times risk. There are studies that show a 63 percent increase, um, for [00:09:00] 30 days after smoking marijuana. Um, there are many, many studies that, that look at, at the heart effects. There’s a study that, that looks at, looked at people who had, um, angina, that’s chest pain, uh, whenever they exercise. And they would put these people on a treadmill and then they would, um, see how long it took them to develop chest pain.

Then a couple of days later, they would let them smoke one joint. These are people. All of these people had never smoked marijuana before. They let them smoke one joint, and then they got back on the treadmill. And on average, they had angina 50 percent faster, over 50 percent faster. Uh, after smoking that one joint, um, there’s just tremendous cardiac effects or heart effects.

Um, there’s problems with the lungs. There’s, uh, increased, uh, bronchitis and asthma. Um, there’s increased risk of cancer. It’s, it’s almost a six, six times increase in cancer for those who smoke, uh, moderately [00:10:00] or heavily. Um, and then, I mean, you can just go on and on. There, there’s problems with the immune system.

Uh, there’s, there’s problems with fertility. Um, there’s problems with oral health. Um, there’s so many different problems from a physical standpoint. And then if you start looking into the, um, the, uh, mental health issues, uh, you start seeing that, that there’s an increase in anxiety, panic attacks, depression, suicide attempts, bipolar disorder, um, and psychosis, including schizophrenia.

Um, and, uh, and there’s also things that we don’t even think about, like increase in motor vehicle accidents. There’s a doubling, uh, since 2000, between 2000 and 2018. Um, the number of, uh, fatal accidents that involved marijuana, uh, went from 7%, uh, to 18 percent in that short period of time. And anytime states [00:11:00] legalize marijuana, um, on average, there’s about a doubling, uh, in the risk of fatal car accidents, and there’s a, there’s an increased risk in all motor vehicle accidents, uh, having, uh, marijuana involved in those accidents whenever it’s, uh, legalized.

I mean, you can just go on and on. I found so many things. There’s over 20, 000 studies, uh, about marijuana that, that are out at this point, um, and I’m writing some books at this point and, uh, I put over 500 of those studies, uh, in the books that I’m writing.

Scott DeLuzio: You know, one of the things that I always thought of whenever someone was saying, like, how much better it is for you or how, whatever the benefits are of, uh, you know, smoking marijuana, I always thought to myself that you’re smoking something, you’re putting smoke into your lungs. That, that just like from grade school, you’re taught don’t smoke because [00:12:00] that’s not good for you.

It, you know, it doesn’t matter if it’s a cigarette or if it’s marijuana or whatever. It’s, I mean, would you stand in your house as it’s on fire with smoke billowing everywhere and just breathe that smoke in? Obviously it’s different effects, but it’s smoke is. Smoke, right? Like it’s gonna have, obviously there’s other, you know, chemicals and things like that, that could be harmful in a, you know, a house fire, but, um, but you’re putting smoke into your body and people die of smoke inhalation.

So why would you do that? Like, to me, that, that just didn’t make a whole lot of sense. And, you know, this is coming from just for, uh, you know, clarity here for the listeners and everything, this is coming from someone who’s never smoked marijuana ever. So I don’t, I don’t know. I’ve never had firsthand experience with it, but just. Common sense to me just says, like, why would you do something like that, you know?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Yeah. And, and you’re, you’re right about that. And there’s actually studies out, uh, marijuana has actually greater effects than tobacco. And there’s people [00:13:00] that will, uh, deny that you can, you can find studies here and there that that will contradict, um, a lot of the things that I’m telling you. But if you look overall at the, at the true body of evidence, you know, for everyone that’s like that, you’ll find, you know, nine that, that are.

On the side that, that I’m talking about. And, um, you just don’t hear that, uh, much in the media and I’m, I’m disappointed in that and I’m trying to, to help turn that around. It’s, and it’s not just me. There are, there are many of us out there that, that have the same message. Um, our voices just aren’t quite as loud.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, and it’s interesting, too, with all of the, um, the legalization of it going on, you know, around the country. All these different states legalizing, uh, the usage of marijuana. Um, you know, is it just that they’re, they’re Just listening to one side or that side is just louder. Is that, you know, maybe what’s going on with all of that?[00:14:00]

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Yeah, they’re just like, there was big tobacco back in the, the, uh, fifties and sixties and, and. Um, there’s big marijuana too, and they bankroll, um, these referendums. They also, uh, bankroll, uh, political campaigns, and there’s a lot of money behind it, and so, um, that’s really where it comes from. If you look back at, at 1991, uh, about 80 percent of young people believe that marijuana caused significant harm to our bodies, and, and if you fast forward that to 2021, 30 years later, um, Only 21 percent of young people believe that marijuana causes problems.

Well, what does that do? Uh, it, it leads to a six times increase. Those who, um, believe that marijuana causes issues are six times less likely to smoke marijuana than those, uh, who believe that, that it, it doesn’t cause harm. So, um, it, it’s just, it’s [00:15:00] a, it’s a huge, uh, campaign. Uh, on, on the part of, of a lot of people, uh, to, uh, make it look like that, that it’s really not harmful.

And a lot of people are in on it. They’re, they’re not trying to harm people. They, they, they just buy into it and, and they, they think, well, it really doesn’t cause problems. And, uh, so they, they really don’t understand the issues. And, and I think once they see the, the evidence, and I know once they see the evidence that a lot of people are, are going to.

To not head that direction.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And it very well could be too. And I don’t know for sure cause I don’t know these specific individuals or groups of people who are advocating for, uh, the usage of it, but it very well could be that they’re advocating for a very specific usage of it. Like you mentioned earlier, pain management, like, like it, it is effective in some cases and, uh, for certain types of pain. Um, and. So maybe they’re looking at it from that perspective, but they’re not looking at all the other effects potentially. I, [00:16:00] again, I don’t know, but maybe, maybe that’s part of the reason why they’re, they’re so adamant that they’re like, yeah, so let’s go for it. You know? Um, but, um, but that, that to me just seems like. You know, it’s an education type thing. I know when we were younger, growing up, we had all sorts of drug education programs and things like that. And, you know, varying degrees of effectiveness as far as that goes. But, um, but it probably led to more people, um, uh, you know, believing that it was harmful, uh, for them.

And so I, if something’s harmful for me, I don’t want to do it, you know? So.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: That’s absolutely true. Um, yeah, those, uh, education programs back in the, the eighties, um, especially were, were very effective and that’s why you saw those numbers in, in 1991. Um, and, uh, when those were, were no longer out there, at least not as, as much, um, you see the effects that, that it [00:17:00] has on, on our young people, especially.

Scott DeLuzio: As a healthcare professional, how do you talk to your patients, uh, who might be either using it for various reasons or in inquiring about what, whether or not it’s a good option for them? Uh, how do you talk to them about the potential risks that they may be encountering?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Well, I, there’s so many people that use marijuana now, um, about 18 percent of the general public uses it, and 43 percent of those ages 19 to 30, uh, have used it in the past year, um, 31 percent of 12th graders, uh, have used it in the past year, and so, uh, many of my patients, in fact, uh, over half of my patients are, uh, Children and teens.

And so there’s a, there’s a lot of them that use marijuana. And so whenever they come in to see me there, we’re talking about surgery. And so I talk with them about the [00:18:00] anesthetic, uh, implications, uh, that I’m going to have to use more anesthesia. I talk with them about the fact that they may be combative or violent during surgery, uh, which people don’t understand that, but.

Um, whenever you, uh, use marijuana, you’re, you’re much more likely to be combative because the anesthesia is not, not working well. Um, and so we talk about that and, and that for their safety and, and for the staff safety, safety that we always reserve the right to stop during the procedure. We also talk about the increased risk of heart attacks, especially if they’ve used it.

Um, recently, uh, you know, we try to get our patients not to do it for a, not to use marijuana for at least a few days, uh, ahead of time to, to reduce the, the risk of heart attacks, uh, during a procedure. And then we also talk about, uh, sometimes about the immune system implications and, and how that marijuana, uh, reduces our immune response somewhat and, and it could lead to increase.

Risk of [00:19:00] infections and could slow healing as well. So I talk about those things. And then if someone, if I can see that they’re open to, to what I’m talking about and especially if they’re a, you know, if they’re a marijuana user, um, I talk with them sometimes about the overall health risk, uh, and the mental health risk.

Um, and, and especially if I see that they’ve checked anxiety on their form, uh, we talk about anxiety and, and how that it actually increases their, their risk for anxiety if, if they’re using marijuana. So there’s, there’s a lot of ways that, that we talk about that.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, so the, the way I’m understanding it then is it, it’s almost like, um, Almost like a crutch that you might use to, you know, help as you’re, you know, uh, recovering from, uh, you know, a leg injury or something like that, a broken leg, um, where it may be helpful in that moment, but if you continue using it, eventually that leg is not going to get the usage that it needs and, and, um, the muscles start to, you know, weaken and all [00:20:00] that type of stuff.

And, um, you know, similarly, the, again, correct me if I’m wrong, um, You know, the marijuana usage may be helpful for a specific thing in a specific moment, but could lead to other things after the usage. So, like you mentioned, pain management. It could be effective for pain right now, but that could lead to a decreased, uh, you know, or sorry, yeah, decreased, uh, uh, tolerance to pain down the road.

Is that kind of the idea that you’re talking about?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Well, when, when you use it, when you’re on it, you’re, you’re not going to feel pain as much. Um, but as soon as you come down from it, uh, you’re going to have increased pain. And, and as you’re saying. Once you get into chronic use, um, then that’s much more magnified. Uh, you actually have much increased pain when you come down from it and it takes a lot more, uh, of regular pain medications, uh, to, to keep your pain down postoperatively, [00:21:00] uh, is where, where I see it as a surgeon in, in, in anesthesia as well.

So it’s going to take a lot more of those, uh, drugs to, to help keep them comfortable. Um, Really, if we’re talking about pain management, there’s really only one type of pain. Uh, that has been shown to be reduced, and it’s a, it’s a very specific type pain called neuropathic pain, and if you look at, at, uh, NIH and, and some other, uh, organizations, uh, or government entities, I should say.

Um, they say that, that, that, that particular study that showed that, uh, was at high risk for bias. And so, if you’re, if you’re talking about pain, there’s really not, um, any good studies out there that, that show, um, that it, that it really reduces pain.

Scott DeLuzio: interesting. Okay. Yeah.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: And especially if you’re looking overall at the body of evidence, if you look at what, what are called meta analyses, I, I look at a lot of meta analyses, I, I like to look at, At [00:22:00] studies that look at, at many other studies.

And so, one study may look at 30 or 50 other studies, and when you look at the body of evidence, all of that, um, you really see that it’s really not good for pain management.

Scott DeLuzio: And. You also talk about, um, uh, the, kind of the spiritual side of things too, right? Uh, could you talk a little bit about that?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Absolutely. Um, I have a master of divinity, um, I look at things from a Christian perspective, and I love science, I love nature, uh, but I also look in it. Like, like looking at things from a biblical perspective, and I love it when, when the two come together and, and they, uh, they agree with each other. And, and while the Bible doesn’t use, uh, the words cannabis or marijuana, uh, the Bible does speak, uh, about a lot of things that pertain to the subject [00:23:00] of marijuana, and it gives many reasons not to use.

Mind altering substances. It talks about the medical reasons that we listed above. It talks about that marijuana and these mind altering substances can lead to laziness. In medicine, we call that amotivational syndrome. Marijuana leads the user to be a slave to sin. And that’s because addiction is basically slavery.

Um, and then, God wants us to rely on Him for our peace and our joy, and when, when we’re using these substances, uh, we’re relying on, on something else for that. Um, and then also, if you want to talk about the legal aspects of marijuana, it’s still illegal in, in many places, um, and if you’re talking about federal law, it’s still illegal,

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, I was just going to say, yeah,

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Christians are [00:24:00] supposed to obey the law.

Um, and then, uh, the, the Bible talks many places about stay, staying sober at all times. Um, and it just, it doesn’t just tell us to stay sober, but it gives us actually nine reasons that we’re supposed to say, stay sober. And I won’t go into all of those, but, um, drunkenness leads to things like, or, or being high leads to things like poor judgment, um, indulgence in things that we shouldn’t be indulging in.

It, it leads to poverty. It leads to loss of spiritual insight. Um, and it can open up the door, um, to a dark side of the spiritual world that, that we don’t want to be a part of.

Scott DeLuzio: yeah. And I just want to circle back on, on something that you mentioned on the legal side, um, a lot of people don’t realize that it just because like. A lot of times the state will legalize the usage of marijuana for, you know, in various circumstances and people go out and they use it or whatever. It’s still illegal on the [00:25:00] federal level.

It’s still an illegal substance federally. Um, and so there could be some consequences there on a legal level as well. And so, um, you know, while It isn’t enforced on the federal level, but it could be, you know, um, there’s, um, you know, even filling out an application to, you know, buy a firearm. That’s one of the questions that’s on there because it’s still a, it’s a federal form.

It’s still illegal federally. So, you know, that could jeopardize some things like that as well. Right.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Yeah, marijuana is really a legal minefield, um, and people don’t, don’t understand that. But, um, whether you’re talking about, uh, Delta 8, which is, uh, you know, something that’s supposed to be legal in a lot of areas. If you really look into the, the, the, um, the, the true legalities of it. Um, it’s, it’s made in a synthetic form, which makes it illegal in a lot of places.

Um, you, [00:26:00] you can’t separate the Delta 8 and the Delta 9. And even if you’re using Delta 8. Uh, it, then it can, it can still, uh, make you test positive for marijuana. Um, and marijuana itself, um, you know, there’s a lot of jobs that, that you may have, um, that you really are not supposed to be using marijuana, the healthcare field, um, law enforcement.

Um, so, so many different fields that, that if you test positive for that, uh, the legal ramifications are, are really, uh, not on your side. The, there’s, there’s a lot of problems that you can have and it could cost you a lot of money to, to fight it and it could also cost you a career as well.

Scott DeLuzio: That’s true too. Um, you know, anything I got to mention. Anything with a security clearance probably is, is in the same category. Uh, you mentioned law enforcement, healthcare, um, you know, anything with maybe, [00:27:00] um, heavy machinery and equipment and stuff like that. I got to imagine they have some sort of testing like that, um, because you don’t want somebody, you know, under the influence of something like that while you’re, you’re moving heavy equipment and, uh, you know, potentially could, could get somebody killed in the process. Um, you know, as far as the. Um, you know, I, let’s just call it special interest groups who are advocating for the usage of it. There’s, I mean, it’s kind of strange when you, you mentioned that earlier, cause I was thinking to myself, you know, there’s no Marlboro man or Joe Camel or, you know, those types of things in the, uh, marijuana industry, the way they were in, you know, with the big tobacco and, uh, you know, things like that.

So those were like easily identifiable in the, uh, The tobacco, uh, industry, right? Um, the big billboards back, back in the day and all the magazine and newspaper ads and all that stuff. You knew who those, uh, [00:28:00] those figures were and who, what they represented. Um, but now it just seems like it’s just a, you know, little stores that are popping up all over the place and there’s no real structure, but apparently there is like, where’s that structure coming from and, and is there a way to, uh, you know, kind of. Organize on the other side in a similar manner.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Yeah, there’s a lot of really large corporations behind, uh, a lot of these stores, uh, a lot of the growers, et cetera. Um, a lot of the licenses in, in California, for instance, uh, many, many of the licenses were, were really under just a few different, were, were, uh, obtained by just a few different corporations.

Uh, so there’s huge money, uh, behind this that, that people don’t understand.

Scott DeLuzio: That’s interesting. Yeah. Um, and, and these companies, like, I don’t know who they are, you know, like I can easily identify, uh, you know, a [00:29:00] Marlboro or, you know, things like that from back way back when, um, but you know, they, they kind of are. In the background, and they’re not making their name well known, uh, you know, or maybe they are, and I just am not that close to it, but, um, it’s, it’s interesting, because you don’t really know who’s behind all of that, right?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: There, and there’s a lot of, uh, I was just reading, uh, an article the other day, uh, that talks about all of the, there’s Chinese money, there’s Russian money, there’s Ukrainian money. Um, that are behind, uh, a lot of these, uh, a lot of these corporations are, are not U. S. based, U. S. backed. They’re, they’re foreign entities that have come in and gotten these licenses, um, in, in many of the states.

And there’s a lot of organized with that as well. Um, uh, there’s some pretty fascinating articles that it’s not too difficult to, to find those articles.

Scott DeLuzio: yeah, and, and that’s, that’s a, uh, A bit of a concern as well when you [00:30:00] have, you know, countries like China and Russia who are, uh, maybe backing some of this stuff. It’s like, well, why? You always want to know why they’re doing that kind of stuff. And, um, well, you talk about some of the negative effects that it has.

And if, um, they’re aware of those negative effects and, um, You know, if we’re not too friendly, why wouldn’t they want the American people to suffer from some of those negative effects, right? That, you know, that, that could be, uh, you know, an easy motivation right there. Um, as far as the legalization and, and things like that, what are some of the messages that you would want policymakers and, and the general public to understand about these harms?

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Well, um, I I would love for, for people to really understand that, that there are a lot of negative ramifications that, that they just don’t hear, uh, in the public a lot. [00:31:00] Um, legalization definitely increases, uh, Use and it destroys lives, uh, like we said, whether it’s automobile accidents, um, there’s increased violence.

People think that it makes them mellow, but actually when they come down from it, there’s, there’s a lot of, of articles, um, that, uh, talk about, uh, the increased violence, increased domestic violence, increased, uh, uh, dating violence, um, and not only, uh, are you more likely to be a perpetrator, but you’re also more likely to be a victim of it, uh, if you’re using, uh, Um, and, uh, despite popular opinion, um, There’s a lot of problems again with, with health, um, and people think that, uh, there, there’s a misconception out there that marijuana, uh, has been approved by the FDA.

Uh, to, to smoke it, uh, to, for a lot of medical uses, and there’s [00:32:00] absolutely, uh, no FDA approval, uh, for the cannabis plant itself. Um, there are very specific parts of that plant, some cannabinoids, some, some of the active products. Some of the, uh, very purified CBD oils, there’s some, uh, purified, uh, versions that are like THC, but not really THC, um, that have been FDA approved, but the actual cannabis plan itself has never been approved, so why are we legalizing this for, for medical use when, when there’s really no legalization?

No true medical use for, for the cannabis plant itself. I do think there’s, there’s going to be a place in medicine for it, but again, I think it’s going to be, uh, purified substances and, uh, synthetically derived substances that are very similar, uh, to, uh, some of the, the active cannabinoids in, uh, And, uh, the cannabis plant.

So why are we doing [00:33:00] this when, when there are so many downsides? Uh, you, you have to think about that. If you’re someone who, uh, has, uh, a power or you’re a policy maker, um, you have to think about the lives that, that you’re destroying and possibly, uh, even, uh, causing the, the death of, of. Many people. And it can, can not only be people who are users, but it can be other people as well.

I was just talking with a mother the other night. Um, I’m going to be using, uh, her, her story in my book, but her daughter ran through, uh, went through a green light and someone went 82 miles an hour and hit her daughter and ended her daughter’s life instantly. Um, and those are things that. That happen at a much increased rate whenever we, uh, whenever we legalize marijuana.

So you have to think about these things. What are you doing to society, um, and potentially even to your own [00:34:00] family, uh, whenever you, uh, are wanting to legalize these things?

Scott DeLuzio: You know, part of it is, you know, a legalization, uh, uh, conversation, but the, I think another part is the, uh, education conversation too, because back when people, you know, had, had a better understanding that there were some negative consequences to it, people just didn’t want to use it. And so, uh, and I can’t say everybody didn’t, because obviously there were people who used it back then too, right.

But, um, but it was a lot lower usage, uh, back then. So I think. I think partially it’s an education thing. And, you know, I don’t know if it’s a matter of, uh, getting into the schools or, um, public campaigns, kind of like the, uh, you know, this is your brain on drugs with the eggs on the frying pan, uh, commercials and those types of things. Um, you know, I don’t know what the answer is. Um, but, but perhaps [00:35:00] something like that is what’s missing from this conversation and, and maybe, uh, would, would help, uh, in some cases here. Right.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Uh, absolutely. Um, I know that, that even though a lot, a lot of people, uh, make fun of those types of, of, uh, campaigns. They really were effective, uh, when, when they were being used. Um, and then also, uh, just people getting out, uh, you know, myself, uh, you’re helping in this right now. Um, just getting the word out, uh, really.

Helps people understand that, Hey, this isn’t the benign drug that we all think it is. It really causes a lot of problems. And so, um, if we can educate people, again, those who, who understand the problems are six times less likely, especially young people that study is about, but they’re six times less likely to use marijuana if they understand the risk.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, and I think maybe for the listeners, like, do your research, um, there’s, there’s [00:36:00] evidence out there, obviously, we’ve been talking about some of that, um, and, and do, do your research and find out, you know, before you get involved with it, you, uh, you know, to figure out is, is this even true. Thank you. You know, something that you want to consider.

And, and, you know, I would suspect that after doing the research and, um, really thinking about it objectively, you know, hopefully you’re, you’re going into it with an open mind. Um, you’ll, you’ll discover that maybe this isn’t the right thing for you. Um, and, and that’s, I think the education piece that we’re just talking about here.


Dr. Raymond Wiggins: And one thing that, that a lot of people don’t understand as well, a lot of people don’t believe that marijuana can be addictive, but the, the higher THC, the, the more potent, uh, marijuanas that we have now, if you go back to, to 1980, uh, excuse me, 1969 to Woodstock, marijuana was one to 2 percent THC, the really good stuff was, was 3%, you fast forward to 1995 and it’s about four times that, well [00:37:00] today, the average THC percent, right?

Um, it is somewhere around 22 to 23%, um, and anything over 10 percent is considered high potency. It’s four times more likely to be addictive and it’s not only a, a psychological addiction like the low potency marijuanas, but, but it’s a high, it’s, it’s a, uh, a physically addictive substance. And so.

Somewhere between, depending on the studies that you read, somewhere between 9 30 percent of people actually become physically addicted to this drug. And you never know if you’re going to be the one that becomes addicted. So, you have to think about those things whenever you start using. You could become physically addicted to this and not be able to stop.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And, and coming off of an addiction of any site type, uh, you know, no matter what the, uh, substance is, is not. An easy thing to do, and in some cases it’s, it’s uh, may even be impossible for some people, right? And that’s, that’s not where you want to be. Uh, you don’t want to be in that situation where you’re, [00:38:00] where you’re stuck in, in uh, you know, feeling like you need to have it all the time, right? Um And so, I guess, yeah, do that research, look into it, and make sure you understand everything, uh, you know, about it, all the different sides, and go into it with an open mind, um, you know, including the addiction aspect and all the other things that we talked about here. So you have a book that’s coming out, uh, in a, probably in a couple of months here, um, tell us about that book and what people can expect from it.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Well, the book is called Weeding Out the Myths About Marijuana, and there’s actually a, a, uh, one of the books is going to be a medical and a, uh, spiritual perspective. It’ll have both. The other one is for, for those people who, uh, don’t want to, to look at the spiritual side of things and maybe for public schools, et cetera, public institutions, um, that won’t allow that.

[00:39:00] And it’s just going to have the, the medical side of things. So it’s going to be two different books. Um, really on the same subject, just looking at it from different perspectives. But Weeding Out the Myths About Marijuana is going to be the name of the book. And then also, um, there’s study guides for both of those so that, that, uh, you can talk, uh, have small group studies, et cetera.

And, uh, learn more about it and go, go deeper if, if you want to do that. And you can go to, to, uh, drwiggins. com and if you’ll sign up for my connection email page, um, or connection email list, um, I’ll let you know when the book comes out and also you’ll get a discount on the book when it comes out as well.

Scott DeLuzio: Excellent. And I’ll have a link to that in the show notes for folks to check it out so that they can, uh, get a copy as soon as the book comes out and be able. Be informed anyways, when the, when the book comes out so that they can get their copy, [00:40:00] um, you know, right away. Um, and a lot of times, especially when, um, you know, there’s a little bit of gap in between the time you hear about something and you’re interested in the time that it actually comes out, there’s, uh, um, there’s that memory lapse and things like that.

So getting on that email list will be a good idea. So, uh, you’ll, you’ll get a reminder when the book actually comes out. So that’s, that’s a good thing. So we’ll have that link. Um,

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: And you, oh, I’m sorry, I’m sorry,

Scott DeLuzio: ahead. No, go ahead. Go ahead.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: you can also connect with me, uh, on social media. Again, if you go to drwiggins. com, that’s d r w i g g i n s. com and connect with me on social media, there are several things that are going to be coming out before the book comes out. Actually, there’s going to be some videos, et cetera.

Uh, that are gonna talk more about this subject and, and educate people, uh, more, uh, about what we were talking about tonight.

Scott DeLuzio: And I’ll have links to your social media. I know you said it’s going to be on the website as [00:41:00] well, but, um, I’ll, I’ll have those links in the show notes. So, um, make it easy for people to click through and connect with you and follow you and you know, message you and all that type of stuff to, uh, just get connected.

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So, um, At this point in the show, uh, towards the end of the show, I like to, uh, add in a bit of humor. Um, a lot of times the subjects that we talk about on the show are a little heavy, a little, little dark sometimes, and, and we, uh, uh, I I, I like to equate it to, uh, heaven dessert at the restaurant, you know, leave you with a good taste in the mouth.

And so, um, I, us usually either tell a [00:43:00] joke or watch a funny video of people doing stupid things or whatever, but, um, some of the jokes that I, I do are. Pretty corny, but if it gets someone to laugh, I don’t care. I’ll make a fool of myself and that’s fine. So, um, you know, we did talk a little bit on the spiritual side of things.

And, uh, so I’m going to, um, I’m going to stick with that, that theme right now and, and go with, uh, with this joke here. Um, so. One day, Sally, this girl Sally, she wasn’t the best student at Sunday school, um, a lot of times she fell asleep, one day while she was sleeping, the teacher asked her a question, and the question was, who is the creator of the universe? And, Joe, another kid in the class, was sitting next to Sally, and decided to poke her with a pin to wake her up. And Sally jumped up and yelled, God Almighty! And so the teacher congratulated her for getting the question right. A little later, the teacher asked another question. She said, Tell me, who is our Lord and Savior? And Joe poked her [00:44:00] again with a pin, and she yelled out, Jesus Christ! And the teacher congratulated her again, because she got the answer right. Later on, the teacher asked, What did Eve Say to Adam after their 26th child. And Joe poked Sally again with the pin and, and she shouted, if you stick that thing in me again, I’m going to snap it in half.

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: That’s funny.


Scott DeLuzio: Anyways, so hopefully that put a smile on some people’s faces. I like to tell corny jokes, so. You know, it is what it is. It’s my show. Um, anyways, thank you again, Raymond, for taking the time to join us and sharing what you’ve discovered and what you’ve come across through your research and your, uh, you know, personal and professional life, uh, with, uh, with the effects of marijuana, um, I do appreciate you taking the time to come on the show and chatting about this.

So thank you.[00:45:00]

Dr. Raymond Wiggins: Thanks so much for having me, Scott. I really appreciate it.

Scott DeLuzio: Thanks for listening to the Drive On Podcast. If you want to support the show, please check out Scott’s book, Surviving Son on Amazon. All of the sales from that book go directly back into this podcast and work to help veterans in need. You can also follow the Drive On Podcast on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and wherever you listen to podcasts.

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