'I was almost a school shooter': Following Parkland shooting a 'family man' confesses lack of access to guns stopped him

If there is a mental health issue underlying school shootings, it is love—or the lack thereof—says Aaron Stark, who this week wrote an open letter about how he "was almost a school shooter" in the mid-1990s. Instead, 25 years later, Stark says he is a "father and family man."

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I love California deeply -- and here's why I'm one of the thousands who had to leave

It’s mid-March in Portland, Oregon and a chill rain is pelting the roof. I’m bundled up in three layers, a scarf and sweatshirt—indoors. I know that for much of the country this time of year, this is just an everyday afternoon. But not so much in my native home on the central coast of California.

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Here are 7 reasons to give up booze and start smoking pot in 2016

No substantial evidence links marijuana to traffic accidents, domestic violence or cancer, yet pot is illegal and listed as a Schedule I controlled substance by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Meanwhile, alcohol remains legal despite the fact that it has been proven to contribute to many societal ills, including domestic violence and auto accidents.

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Top 50 most influential marijuana users

You might be surprised about who's on this list.

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This plant gets you high and reduces opiate addiction -- and it's totally legal

Why are people across the U.S. chewing on the small, glossy leaves of the Southeast Asian kratom tree? An ancient plant medicine related to coffee, it produces a high that’s both euphoric and legal. Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa) has long been used in Thailand and Malaysia to relieve pain, settle the stomach and reduce opiate dependence. Now it’s taking off in the West.

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Neuroscientist Carl Hart: Everything you think you know about drugs and addiction is wrong

Carl Hart grew up in Miami in what he calls the 'hood, a poor community with high rates of crime and prevalent drug use. He kept a gun in his car, engaged in petty crime and sold drugs. Today Hart is a neuroscientist and associate professor of psychology and psychiatry at Columbia University. He's also an expert on drug addiction. In a TEDMED Talk earlier this month, Hart explained how he went from dealing drugs in the 'hood to studying addiction at one of the world’s top universities. His talk summarizes some of the major themes from his book, High Price: A Neuroscientist’s Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society (HarperCollins, 2013).

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New marijuana PSA mocks Maureen Dowd’s pot freakout

New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd traveled to Colorado for some marijuana tourism this June. Then she penned a panicked writeup describing a petrifying psychological breakdown that kept her trapped inside her hotel room after munching too much of a pot-laced candy bar.

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Prestigious 'Scientific American' calls on U.S. to open doors to LSD, MDMA, pot research

Cannabis, LSD, psilocybin (“magic mushrooms”), MDMA (the “ecstasy” drug) and other psychedelic drugs all have significant potential medical uses, as illustrated in the limited research organizations like the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Science have facilitated over the years. But the war on drugs and resulting classification of those psychoactive substances as Schedule I—meaning with “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration—has caused a national research blockade and left that medical potential almost completely untapped.

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