Why should we care about pot?

Published 12:00 am Saturday, May 11, 2013


Communities that care about IQ levels and academic achievement need to oppose marijuana initiatives. Why?

Marijuana use lowers IQ. Data from the National Academy of Sciences for the U.S., shows regular marijuana use begun in adolescence can have long lasting effects on the brain that may not be reversible. The more one uses marijuana, the greater the IQ decline. The decline is about 6-8 points overall. An IQ of 100, is about the 50th percentile; an IQ of 94 drops to the 35th percentile, a significant drop.

Communities caring about jobs and employability need to oppose marijuana initiatives. Why?

About 6,000 companies nationwide require employment drug testing. One cannot get a job if he/she can’t pass a drug test. About 6.6 percent of high school seniors smoke marijuana daily, rendering them unemployable.

If you care about highway safety you should oppose marijuana legalization. Why?

Marijuana is the most prevalent illegal drug detected in impaired drivers and injured drivers in motor vehicle crash victims. The Colorado Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS), Aug.’11, stated that drivers testing positive for marijuana in fatal car crashes DOUBLED between 2006 and 2010, the period when marijuana dispensaries were opened for people having medical marijuana cards in Colorado.

If your community cares about the economy, you need to oppose marijuana initiatives. Why?

The total overall costs of substance abuse in our country, including lost productivity, health and crime-related costs, exceeds $600 billion annually, and considering the money that’s been spent for alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drug rehabilitation, the cost is even higher (NCIRC).

Communities considering regulating and taxing marijuana like alcohol, to solve the economy need to think again. Why?

Federal and state alcohol taxes combined add up to a total of 6 percent of alcohol’s total cost to society. Federal and state tobacco taxes raise only about 13 percent of tobacco’s total cost to society. Costs to society as a result of marijuana addiction etc… will be enormous. Do the math. It’s the other way around. We’re going to lose money.

Communities caring about youth drug rates need to oppose marijuana initiatives. Why?

According to 2010 drug use studies, states with medical marijuana have drug rates twice as high compared to other states. Researchers from the University of Colorado have found that once medical marijuana was implemented in Colorado, youth marijuana rates skyrocketed. In 2008, in Adams County, Colorado, 2 percent of youth self-reported using marijuana. Statistics went up to 40 percent for youth 2 years later, which was after the dispensaries for marijuana became available. Also, 74 percent of kids in treatment for addiction in Denver reported getting their pot from medical marijuana card holders.

Communities caring about the safety of medicines need to oppose medical marijuana. The FDA is an effective national process used to approve the efficacy and safety of medicines. With this movement, people are asking to circumvent this process by simply voting this in by ballot initiatives.

Currently, there’s no scientific basis for using smoked marijuana as medicine, according to the Institute of Medicine. THC has the properties that get you high, but are not related to potential medicine.

According to The Impact of Legalization on Colorado’s Youth, May 22, 2012, advertisements for medical marijuana in Colorado are often women in bikinis or a nurse wearing a short mini skirt selling the product. Advertisements for marijuana are not geared toward the sick and dying, but toward young men and youth.

Sources: Monitoring the Future National Study Results on Drug Use, 2011. Volume 1:42;Secondary School Students. Ann Arbor: Institute for Social Research, The University of Michigan. Available; http://www.monitoringthefuture.org/data/10data.html#2011data-drugs.

Susan Short is the director of the Children’s Policy Council of Covington County.