On election night 2018, while most of the nation’s attention was focused on the Democrats taking the House and the Republicans expanding their Senate majority, few noticed a funny smell wafting in from the Midwest.
Michigan became the 10th, and the first midwestern, state to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. New York and New Jersey seem to be next in line, and more members of Congress now favor federal legalization. Legalized pot, it seems, is on a roll.
All of this is, pun intended, stone-cold crazy. The recreational use of marijuana is dangerous to individuals and degrading to public health and safety.
Recently, in a lead New York Times op-ed entitled “What Advocates of Legalizing Pot Don’t Want You to Know,” Alex Berenson laid out the evidence for why this push toward legalization is exactly wrong. The article is sobering. Even frightening.
Key to the growing support for legalized weed—roughly 65 percent of Americans now favor it—is that marijuana lobbyists and for-profit companies have been blowing smoke (figuratively and literally) for years about the drug’s safety, and about the public benefits of legalization.
Advocates say marijuana is a medicine, not an intoxicant, and that legalization can slow the opioid epidemic. Not true, Berenson argues, pointing to an American Journal of Psychiatry study that shows “that people who use cannabis are more likely to start using opioids later.”
Pot advocates also downplay the mental health risks of using cannabis, but The National Academy of Medicine reports that using pot “is likely to increase the risk of schizophrenia and other psychoses; the higher the use, the greater the risk.” In fact, between 2006 and 2014, emergency room visits from marijuana-induced psychosis tripled to 90,000.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, John Stonestreet and David Carlson