A marijuana addict's life is controlled by marijuana
It is scientifically impossible to become physically addicted to marijuana.
Psychologically yes, a very small minority of heavy users can become so. But once a person decides to take the step to stop smoking they can do it. It's not like heroin or cocaine addiction where they need the drug to function.
Marijuana is not a gateway drug. Most reputable researchers say there's no such things even as a gateway drug.
However, once recent study: news.ufl.edu/2012/07/10/alcohol-gateway
Says that alcohol is the
true gateway drug.
"In the sample of students, alcohol also represented the most commonly used substance, with 72.2 percent of students reporting alcohol consumption at some point in their lifetime. Comparatively, 45 percent of students reported using tobacco, and 43.3 percent cited marijuana use. In addition, the drug use documented found that substance use typically begins with the most socially acceptable drugs, such as alcohol and cigarettes, then proceeds to marijuana use and finally to other illegal, harder drugs. Moreover, the study showed that students who used alcohol exhibited a significantly greater likelihood - up to 16 times - of licit and illicit substance use."
However, I tend to side with this study. One that was carried out of a 12 year period by the University of Pittsburgh:
While the gateway theory posits that each type of drug is associated with certain specific risk factors that cause the use of subsequent drugs, such as cigarettes or alcohol leading to marijuana, this study's findings indicate that environmental aspects have stronger influence on which type of substance is used. That is, if it's easier for a teen to get his hands on marijuana than beer, then he'll be more likely to smoke pot. This evidence supports what's known as the common liability model, an emerging theory that states the likelihood that someone will transition to the use of illegal drugs is determined not by the preceding use of a particular drug but instead by the user's individual tendencies and environmental circumstances.
Another question; in most countries now in Europe there is a vocal minority who are demanding that soft drugs such as marijuana be legalised. Is there something similar here?