Education and Marijuana – two of Arizona’s biggest voting points in the upcoming year.
One – a necessity that needs attention, proper consideration, planning and bi-partisan cooperation.
The other – a frivolous drug that is proving to be more and more dangerous as time goes on.
Legalizing recreational marijuana would be detrimental to the progress we have made for Arizona education.
State Representative Paul Boyer wrote today:
The marijuana legalization movement in Arizona is relying on a specious study to make the case for recreational marijuana at the ballot next year. Their study says marijuana is 114 times safer than alcohol. Interestingly, it also says meth is ten times safer than alcohol, while heroin and cocaine are twice as safe. On that logic, why not make meth, heroin, and cocaine like alcohol, as well?
Meanwhile, serious peer reviewed research regarding the effects of marijuana has been shown to increase high school drop outs, lower IQ, induce memory loss, and in some cases cause paranoia and psychosis – especially among adolescents.
For those of us concerned with the state of education in Arizona, this is extremely alarming. With considerable discussion about Arizona’s education funding, along with high school and college graduation rates, we should be working to improve our state of education, not exacerbate an already bad situation by legalizing a substance detrimental to every outcome we want for our children. And make no mistake, legalizing this dangerous drug for adults will lead to more use by children, just as we see with alcohol.
States that have marijuana-friendly legislation have seen a dramatic spike in marijuana exposure to children. The Journal Clinical Pediatrics found an over 600 percent increase in the amount of marijuana exposure to children six and under in such states. That study suggests, “the rate of marijuana exposure among children is associated with the number of marijuana users.” We don’t need that here in Arizona…
Given all our debates about funding education in Arizona, one is left asking what the point of all this would be if we introduce a substance into our society that will nullify, if not reverse, everything we have worked so hard to improve when it comes to our children’s education. Whatever plan we settle on with education, adding marijuana into the mix will render this debate, and its result, essentially pointless.
So, why should we consider legalizing a substance that would damage all of the progress we’ve made in education? Good question. We shouldn’t.
Read Boyer’s full article here.