Tag Archives: Chicago Tribune

Alex Berenson editorial suggests parents step up to the plate

This was supposed to be the year full cannabis legalization in the U.S. moved much closer to being a reality.  Instead it has been a disaster for advocates.  Although Illinois legalized recreational use on the final day of its legislative schedule, a half-dozen other deep-blue states that were expected to legalize failed to follow — including New York.

Advocates want to believe legalization on their terms, with few restrictions on marketing and limits potentially as low as 18, remains inevitable.  Polls show that between 62% and 66%of Americans support legalization.  But cannabis supporters are wrong, and the pushback against marijuana has only begun.

Why?  Because teen use is on the rise.  And the experience of the 1970s — the last time cannabis advocates believed they might win full national acceptance — shows that the strongest voices against cannabis use aren’t police officers or even physicians.  They’re parents. …As teenage use of cannabis exploded during the 1970s, many parents became deeply concerned. The drug seemed to damage their children’s motivation, memory and grades. …

Not coincidentally, in states where legalization failed this year, wealthier suburban lawmakers proved a crucial political stumbling block.  Because of the cost of vaping, the habit seems to be more attractive to upper-middle class kids, and their parents are nw seeing marijuana’s real risks up close.  As that knowledge spreads, the media is likely to take a more skeptical stance, and national support for legalization will shrink.  

Alex Berenson, The Wall Street Journal   

As published in the Chicago Tribune, July 3, 2019  

Alex Berenson is the author of Tell Your Children the Truth about Marijuana, Mental Health and Violence and 12 other books.

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Four States decline to legalize pot through legislatures this year

Marijuana legalization hit stone walls in New York and New Jersey this week and another effort died in New Hampshire.   In Vermont, legislation to establish a commercial marijuana market faltered, too.  Four states failed.  Tiny windows of opportunity may still be open, but passing bills doesn’t appear possible before the end of this year’s legislative session.

It was the second year New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy tried to implement marijuana legalization through the legislature.  In New Jersey, Continue reading Four States decline to legalize pot through legislatures this year

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Ask Amy: No it’s Not SAFER When it Comes to DRiving

Amy Dickinson writes a syndicated column for a number of newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times.  This question and answer appeared in the April 6, 2017 editions.  The marijuana lobby wrote a book, Marijuana is Safer,  full of misinformation.  We believe it’s important to publish this message from the Ask Amy column. 

Dear Amy: I have a 25-year-old granddaughter who will call a taxi or use a designated driver if she is going to be drinking, but she thinks it’s fine to smoke pot and get behind the wheel of a vehicle.

I have told her that she is probably more impaired after smoking pot then if she had a couple of drinks.

She totally disagrees. I have spoken to other pot smokers, and a lot of them agree with her.

How can I get her to understand the severe consequences that could happen to herself or some innocent person if she drives impaired?

— Frustrated!

Dear Frustrated: I shared your question with a spokesperson with the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which has published studies on this.

Their response: “There seems to be a common misperception — that people can compensate (and in fact drive more slowly than normal) under the influence of marijuana. But the research says something different — marijuana increases your risk of being in a car crash about two-fold, and also increases your risk of being at fault for the accident.”

“These effects are not as dramatic as the effects of alcohol (which increases your risk about five-fold at the 0.08 legal limit), but the combination of the two — marijuana and alcohol — is even worse than either one alone.”

That last point is important. If your granddaughter is using alcohol and marijuana at the same time (as many people do), she should not drive.

For more information check www.drugabuse.gov.

The marijuana-induced crash that killed bicyclist Richard Tom and driver Joseph Marshall, April 26,2015. Photo: Elizabeth Murray, Burlington Free Press

Editor’s Note: The number of fatal crashes — especially in the states of Washington and Colorado — caused by THC-impaired drivers suggests that NORML and Marijuana Policy Project need to issue warnings  against marijuana and driving.

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