Lester Grinspoon, influential marijuana scholar, dies at 92

He believed pot was dangerous until his research convinced him otherwise. He then became a leading proponent of legalization
The New York Times (US)
Thursday, July 2, 2020

Lester GrinspoonDr. Lester Grinspoon, a Harvard psychiatry professor who became a leading proponent of legalizing marijuana after his research found it was less toxic or addictive than alcohol or tobacco, died on June 25 at his home in Newton, Mass. He was 92. He concluded that marijuana was a relatively safe intoxicant that should be regulated like alcohol. The real danger, he said, was criminalizing its users. After previewing his findings in an article in Scientific American in 1969, Dr. Grinspoon wrote “Marihuana Reconsidered.” It was published in 1971. “The greatest potential for social harm lies in the scarring of so many young people and the reactive, institutional damages that are direct products of present marihuana laws,” Dr. Grinspoon wrote.