Just because we decriminalize an activity, doesn’t make it a good idea.
I predict Colorado’s achievement of making marijuana legal (and taxable) to be along those lines.
Many folks would line up in two groups — those who has smoked marijuana (and broken the law) – and those who know someone who has smoked marijuana.
Those who have smoked marijuana would approve of Colorado’s change. Those folks, of course, would believe that an occasional joint is no worse than an occasional drink.
Most people who haven’t tried marijuana probably believe legalization is a bad idea.
The American Medical Association (AMA) has suggested that, “cannabis is a dangerous drug and as such is a public health concern. It is the most common illicit drug involved in drugged driving, particularly in drivers under the age of 21.”
The AMA has suggested that heavy pot usage in adolescence has been tied to lower IQ and higher rates of anxiety, mood, and psychotic thinking.
Public sentiment has backed Colorado’s legalization. Shoppers endured long lines to buy America’s first legal recreational marijuana.
Colorado reported an estimated over $1 million in sales for Jan. 1, the first legal day for sales. A conservative estimate is there will be $600 million in sales and $67 million in tax revenue for 2014.
Coloradans must be 21 years old to buy marijuana. Residents can buy up to an ounce at a time while out-of-state buyers are limited to a quarter of an ounce.
However, smoking pot in public places remains illegal. Apparently, “breaking the law,” is OK in the privacy of your own home.
There is little doubt the state’s grand experiment will increase the number of impaired drivers on the road. There is a sobriety test for too much alcohol for a driver. I don’t know of such a test for a marijuana-impaired driver.
A sobriety test for marijuana in Colorado will be the state’s latest barometer for how well their legalization of pot is working.
What makes me most nervous is the perception that for the first time last year, a majority of Americans support legalization of pot.
Just like legalized gambling, the trend of legal marijuana will spread to other states.
There are a lot of things bad for you, but last time I checked, no one has lost brain cells by using too much salt.
Colorado is proof that our nation is going “to pot,” one state at a time.