The majority of states now allow some form of legalized marijuana. On the federal level, Sen. Charles Schumer is pushing to void the laws against marijuana and expunge criminal convictions. The public seems to have accepted the use of pot. My local government just voted to end marijuana screenings for applicants for public jobs. Does anyone see a downside to the proliferation of pot?
The quip from Ogden Nash, "candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker" now needs to be updated. Cannabis candy is far quicker and far more accessible because there is no smoke or aroma. Would anyone eat only half a gummy bear even though it contains multiple doses of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana? The easy consumption of laced cookies and candies encourages more consumption, especially among children. No worries about inhaling or not inhaling the smoke! A recent survey found that more than 30 percent of high school seniors had used marijuana within the last year (University of Michigan study).
No one disputes that marijuana negatively affects the developing brain, which is not fully developed until age 25. Prolonged use of pot is not a beneficial medicine, but a mind-altering drug that increases depression and causes memory loss and psychosis. The more that society accepts and promotes cannabis consumption, the more innocuous it seems to young people. Unfortunately, we may lose a generation before we see the lows from increased highs. Both individuals and society will pay a high cost.
Even worse, the inmates are running the pot asylum. In New York, those who have a marijuana arrest record now have priority for getting a retail license to sell pot! Unbelievably, government is rewarding lawbreakers and expects the felons to begin complying with the law by collecting and remitting the taxes on marijuana. The greed of state governments for the new tax revenue is tempered when they discover that illicit untaxed pot is still popular instead of the more expensive legal taxed version.