If you listen to the mainstream media, you would think that legalizing marijuana is a win-win situation for everyone. They claim that marijuana has many beneficial medicinal purposes by legalizing it, and those who need it for medical purposes should have greater access. It also brings in needed tax revenue to cities, counties and states. Legalizing marijuana prevents many people from facing jail time and criminal records for possession and use of marijuana. The media and marijuana advocates say that there are no negatives or harmful effects of legalizing marijuana.
Don’t forget that this is the same mainstream media that ignored the many crimes committed by Barack Obama and many within his administration, including Hillary Clinton. This is the same media that praised Bill Clinton for his adulterous affair in the Oval Office and crucified former Vice President Dan Quayle for misspelling a word.
Colorado legalized marijuana for medicinal and recreational use three and half years ago, so let’s take a quick look at the impact that has had.
On January 1, 2014, Colorado legalized the medical and recreational use of Marijuana. They claimed that it would add millions of dollars to the state’s revenue via state taxes which includes a 2.9% sales tax, 10% special sales tax and 15% excise tax, meaning the state would collect $27.90 for every $100 of recreational marijuana sold in the Rocky Mountain state.
In April 2014, 19-year-old foreign exchange student Levy Thamba plunged off a hotel balcony and died after eating legally purchased marijuana laced cookies. After eating just one cookie, Thamba became agitated and ran out onto the balcony and over the edge, falling to his death. The pot-laced cookies were legally purchased by a 21-year-old present at the gathering.
In September 2015, 47-year-old Richard Kirk purchased a Pre 98 Bubba Kush Pre-Roll joint and Karma Kandy Orange Ginger, a marijuana laced candy. Shortly after eating the pot laced candy, Kristine Kirk, 44, called 9-1-1 to report that her husband was hallucinating and frightening her and their three children. During her call, she told the police dispatcher that her husband had asked her to get the gun from their safe and shoot him. When she refused, she told the dispatcher that he was retrieving the gun. Twelve minutes into the emergency call, the dispatcher heard a gunshot over the phone and then the line went dead.
When police finally arrived at the house, Kristine was dead from a gunshot to the head and Richard was ranting and rambling to himself. In his ramblings, he admitted to killing his wife. Police said it appeared to them that Richard was definitely suffering the effects of some controlled substance and/or prescription drugs.
By October 2015, the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area released their annual report which reveals the impact of legal marijuana use. Among the alarming report, marijuana related traffic deaths have increased by 32%. Not all of those that lost their lives were the users of marijuana. They were the innocent victims of someone else who was driving while under the influence of marijuana.
They also reported significant increases in emergency room and hospital visits linked to marijuana use. Additionally, they reported that school expulsions have increased by 40% with the majority of them being related to marijuana.
These are only a few of the instances of the negative health-related impacts of legalizing marijuana. There is another negative impact that not’s directly health related, but has presented a danger to the safety and health of many.
Have you ever been to Durango, Colorado? I went years ago, and remember that it was a picturesque city in a beautiful part of the state. Today, many parts of Durango have been transformed in ugliness and it’s all due to the legalization of marijuana.
Durango has become a haven for homeless, panhandlers, drug users, transients and vagrants, most between the ages of 20 and 30. They have filled the sidewalks and loiter in front of stores, blocking access of customers. One store owner, Caleb Preston says he has to constantly kick vagrants away from the door of store. He told the media:
“Just this year there has been a major influx of people between 20 to 30 who are just hanging out on the streets. The problem is while many are pretty mellow, there are many more who are violent.”
Legalizing marijuana is NOT a win-win situation. It kills people in homes and on the roads. It transforms entire communities and leads many younger people to become homeless, panhandling vagrants. Yes, it can bring millions of tax dollars to government coffers, but at what cost?