Warns Virginia Legislators Not to Ignore the True Costs and Harms
Merrifield, VA—February 8, 2021–Opponents to the Virginia bills which will permit 400 retail marijuana shops and home grows in neighborhoods around the state, are hearing some alarming arguments in favor of the idea. Parents Opposed to Pot (PopPot), a drug prevention campaign, responds to the erroneous information currently being accepted by some legislators.
The reasons constituents are being given for supporting the legislation (SB 1406 and HB 2312) are in bold. What follows are the PopPot rebuttals:
There has not been an increase in the use of marijuana in states with legalization.
The recently released SAMHSA National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH 2018-2019) shows that drug use doubles when a state legalizes. MomsStrong.org recently published a helpful chart of this data. In the state of Colorado about 20% of teens use marijuana regularly, and half of those teens have progressed to the more dangerous high THC concentrates. These psychoactive drug products manufactured and sold by the marijuana industry include vapes and edibles. In jurisdictions where there is a high density of marijuana shops the rate is even higher. In Pueblo, Colorado, known as the Napa Valley of marijuana, the youth rate is 35%, and in Denver the rate is 25% for teens. Teens were not using these products before legalization.
Virginia Legislators Need to Evaluate Public Health Outcomes in Pot Legal States says PopPot
Merrifield, VA– February 4, 2021—[EIN Press Wire]—Virginia’s state legislature is fast-tracking a bill to legalize marijuana. Parents Opposed to Pot (PopPot), a Virginia-based educational nonprofit, calls on the legislature to slow down and consider the fact that this is an addictive drug that can cause severe mental illness.
“The governor claims his top priority is public health, and yet the only legislative committee not to review the pending marijuana commercialization law is the Health committee,” explains Aubree Adams, Assistant Director of PopPot. “Our website, poppot.org, contains dozens of stories of marijuana addiction, psychosis, and death, written by parents, former and current users of marijuana.”
Parents from every part of the country tell us that their teens claim “marijuana is safer than alcohol.” That’s because many teens take messages from social media and fake news.
The Surgeon General and Secretary of Health and Human Services issued a blunt warning today, clarifying why cannabis is not safe. Together with the heads of SAMHSA and NIDA, Dr. Jerome Adams and HHS Secretary Alex Azar spoke at a Press Conference today, detailing the risks of pot.
Marijuana farms are fouling the ecosystem and draining energy and water resources in states that have liberalized their marijuana laws. Governor Jerry Brown blames California’s wildfires on climate change, but he ignores marijuana, the biggest cause of environmental damage to his state. The environmental damage in California alone will be in the billions of dollars. This will be more costly than Exxon Valdez oil spill disaster.
Dr. Mourad Gabriel is the executive director of the non-profit Integral Ecology Research Center, based in Blue Lake, California. He studies endangered wildlife. When high levels of toxic rodenticides were first found in dead wildlife, it set off alarm bells, but Dr. Gabriel couldn’t figure out the source of the poison. At a scientific conference, he learned that drug cartels were setting up illegal marijuana farms in wilderness lands.
As he now leads investigations deep into the forest to locate and shut down these dangerous operations, he needs to wear kevlar, a protective body armor. One of the marijuana gangsters poisoned and killed Gabriel’s dog a few years ago, trying to scare him away. See the article in The Atlantic, Illegal Pot Farms are Poisoning California’s Forests.
Losing our Water and Natural Resources
These environmental travesties threaten America’s pristine natural wonders near Mount Shasta and Lake Tahoe. One former California resident warns that wilderness hikers can be in grave danger if they happen upon one of these illegal grow sites. Pot growers and other squatters are armed and will shoot to protect their activities.
The growers use poisons to protect their plants which in turn kill wildlife. One small mammal, the fisher is an endangered species at risk from these toxic chemicals.
These illicit growers are using a banned pesticide carbofuran, which is so potent that one eight of a teaspoon will kill a 300 pound bear. Forest rangers are finding the poison strewn around the forest floor in Vitamin Water bottles.
And, as to energy usage, California is about to legalize recreational marijuana, and greedy entrepreneurs are converting old warehouse space into indoor grows. These indoor marijuana facilities are known to use a tremendous amount of electricity to power the grow lights. See this article in the Guardian: Pot is Power Hungry.
In a society that prides itself on ‘going green,’ we must think carefully about the negative impacts of commercializing the plant that causes more environmental damage than any other. States like Massachusetts, Vermont and New Jersey should consider these environmental hazards. It is not too late to reverse the damage.
Governor Jerry Brown poses as an environmentalist on the national stage while enabling his own state’s environmental destruction. Money and pro-pot journalists kept Californians in the dark about the environmental disaster of marijuana, but the governor knew the truth. Governor Brown could have spoken out against Prop 64, but he honored a favor from his reelection in 2014.
Governor Brown spoke eloquently against marijuana on Meet the Press, on March 2, 2014. Four days later, Sean Parker and his wife donated $81,600 to Brown’s re-election campaign. The governor immediately abandoned a safety bill which would have limited the THC allowed in drivers to 2 ng.
Parker donated $9 million to the cause of California’s legalization campaign of 2016, even more than George Soros’ $4 million. The campaign was full of “dark money” hidden in secret groups, but included at least $12 million of marijuana industry donors. While Governor Brown didn’t come out for or against Prop 64, he could have used his environmental conscience to advocate “No.”