Oppositions to Legal Marijuana


Sydni Bratthauar, Writer

Marijuana has been legalized in all states except for four: Kansas, Nebraska, Idaho, and South Dakota. Most of the states following “It’s safer than alcohol or tobacco” statement. However, there are people- doctors, police, auto officials, parents, scientists- who oppose to using legal marijuana. The critics say that even though marijuana may be safer than alcohol or tobacco doesn’t mean that it’s actually safe.

For one, studies have shown that marijuana has caused a 6% increase in car crashes between 2012 and 2017. Driving while under marijuana is like driving drunk.

Marijuana isn’t like a prescribed medication. The doctors can’t tell someone how much to take, how to take it, or tell you how much to decrease or increase dosage by. It’s a risky ‘medication’ so to say. Some states (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois) are allowing people to use marijuana as a substitute for opioid painkillers. This replacement is supposed to be able to “wean [people] from opioid addiction”. Whether this is true or not, there’s not enough evidence to support either case. Scientists and doctors have said that state laws are outpacing science, which makes them concerned.

Opponents are also saying that marijuana increases/causes psychosis. Of course there isn’t much evidence for or against this statement, but there is this chemical called THC. THC is the psychoactive component that makes people feel ‘high’. An average marijuana plant consists of 3% THC and marijuana sold at medical stores has as much as 25% THC. Eating food containing marijuana actually contains more THC than that.

Parents of a little girl in Indiana gave their daughter tiny doses of THC in hope that it would stop her seizures for a little while. They say that it worked, but medical experts say that they don’t endorse THC to control seizures. In fact, studies have shown that THC has a neutral effect on seizures. It might even promote them.

In another study, marijuana users had a drop in their IQ by 8 points. The National Academies found that learning, memory, and attention are damaged soon after marijuana use.

The evidence to support both sides legal marijuana is very limited. We don’t know if it actually helps or makes things worse. All in all, people are going to use marijuana whether it’s legal or not. We just have to wait for the science to catch up. 

Source: The USA Today