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Legalization of Marijuana: What About the Kids?

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posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:19 PM
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Legalization of Marijuana: What About the Kids?

What about them? This is a question that comes up time and time again during the marijuana legalization discussion. This mother presents a grand idea instead of the standard yell hysterically tactic of the Just Say No campaign.



Today, the end of marijuana prohibition increasingly seems inevitable, with a majority of Americans favoring legalization, and three-fourths believing marijuana will eventually be legal nationwide.

While none of these new laws allow sales to minors, parents like me are understandably concerned about the potential impact of these reforms on teenagers.

Many worry that legalization might "send the wrong message," leading to an escalation in teenage use.

As a federally funded researcher, I regularly check survey data and am reassured by the annual Monitoring the Future survey of high school students' drug use, which found recently that a majority of teens say that even if marijuana was legal, they would not try it. Preliminary data from the post-legalization 2013 Healthy Kids Colorado Survey revealed that high school marijuana use in Colorado had actuallydecreased.

This has also been the case in states where medical marijuana is legal. Research published in prestigious journals such as the American Journal of Public Health and the Journal of Adolescent Health generally show no association between medical marijuana laws and rates of teenage marijuana use. In California, where such laws have been in place for 18 years and are perhaps most lenient, marijuana use among teens is less prevalent now than before medical marijuana was legalized, according to the recent California Student Survey.


It's nice to a see a mother that enjoys using facts and knowledge to raise her children instead of fear and paranoia.


Teenagers have used marijuana, along with alcohol, pharmaceuticals, and a host of other intoxicants, for decades. Parents and educators have consistently advocated abstinence, but despite our admonitions and advice, significant numbers of teenagers have continued to "experiment." Legalization presents just one more challenge, as marijuana becomes a normal part of the adult world, akin to alcohol.

It's time to get realistic -- to devise innovative, pragmatic strategies for dealing with teens, marijuana, alcohol, and other drug use in this new era.


Whoa! A parent admitting that not all teenagers listen to the abstinence of drugs idea? What's next she going to suggest that we educate these kids about responsible drug use and good scientifically backed information about the drugs?


Schools have a unique opportunity to use legalization to enhance civics lessons, in real time, about the process by which laws are made and how and why they are changed. Surely this will capture students' attention. Drug education should provide honest, science-based information, rejecting the ineffective scare tactics that characterized now-outdated programs such as DARE. "Just Say Know" should be our mantra.

Abstinence, of course, would be the best choice for teenagers. My bottom line, however, as a parent, is safety -- and drug education that emphasizes personal responsibility, knowledge, common sense and moderation. Students must understand that legalization applies only to adults, and the legal and social consequences of marijuana use remain mostly unchanged for them until they reach the age of 21.

Parents should approach the "marijuana conversation" by learning all they can about the influences in their teen's life, from the internet and social media to music. They should read up on marijuana, using balanced, credible sources, rejecting any source that is completely one-sided. And parents need to listen, non-judgmentally, to what their teens have to say. Advice is most likely to be heard when it is requested, and threats of punishment can backfire.


Well damn.
edit on 3-12-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:29 PM
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Abstinence, of course, would be the best choice for teenagers


How does she know this exactly?, seems pretty close minded.




Parents should approach the "marijuana conversation" by


Blazin a fat skunky reefer listenin to some tunes and relax.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:29 PM
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What? Kids experimenting with substances? Whatever next?

Maybe they'll start throwing strops left, right and centre and refuse to speak to their parents at any given notice (even without).

All we can do as parents is educate them to the dangers of certain substances and allow them to make informed choices. But, 'Nanny State' knows best surely?



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:33 PM
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a reply to: Cobaltic1978

Maybe they can have the "marijuana conversation" while they're telling them how dangerous alcohol can be.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:36 PM
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As a Denverite and a mother who gave Amendment 64 two big thumbs up, I plan on teaching personal responsibility regarding marijuana to my children. Along with sex, and alcohol use, and parties, etc. Unless I lock them in their rooms, they WILL be exposed to these things. Instead of taking the "out of sight out of mind" approach like my parents did, I have already accepted the fact that my children will want to explore all of these things like the curious creatures teenagers are. I will talk about responsibility, long term effects, addiction issues, employment problems and so on.

On a side note... I love my state and am reaping the benefits of our exploding economy. I love the sense of unity here.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:38 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Honestly hopped on here expecting to see the same old hogwash. People advocating the D.A.R.E. propaganda. I bet D.A.R.E. did more harm than good. Actually I know it did. But would be violating the T&C if it told how I know this.
This is the kind of approach that needs to be taken towards this flower. Intelligent, informed parents stepping up.

But in all honesty the main reason this plant is illegal is the 10,000+ commercial uses the male plant(hemp) has. It's harder to find some hemp(CBD) based products right now than the cannabis(THC) counterparts. That should say something...



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:38 PM
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DOUBLE POST.
S&F btw.
edit on 3-12-2014 by JAY1980 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:39 PM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

Awesome! Always great to see a parent who is on the ball. Nothing good comes from pretending an issue doesn't exist.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:41 PM
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a reply to: JAY1980

I think part of the point with how the article was titled was supposed to illicit that response only for the person to read on and find that they agree with the points instead of be outraged about it. Great clickbait strategy for a good article.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:41 PM
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Alcohol is legal and kids seem to get by with that. Sure some get a hold of a bit and might experiment, but the best lesson they can get from that is the hangover. I think telling kids the truth is important. If we tell them that all drugs are equal and they are all deadly, then what if they try smoking some reefer and find out it's not at all like they were told. Then they might say, hell, pot wasn't so bad, maybe some meth isn't bad either. And then you have a kid strung out or dead.

Knowing the truth about all the dangers is about the only way to approach this touchy subject. (IMHO)



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:43 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Agreed it caught my attention. Gonna stick around a while and watch the bait for a bit.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 02:50 PM
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a reply to: network dude

I remember when I was back in middle school and was talking to a kid who smoked pot. At the time I was still brainwashed by the Just Say No campaign so I was against it. I asked him why he smoked when it was so bad for you. He responded simply, "how is it bad for you?" I just stopped talking. I couldn't think of a single reason WHY pot was bad, just that I had always been told it was bad.

This conversation started my long journey down marijuana education lane. Granted I didn't rush out to go find some to smoke after I left class that day, but that was the seed that was planted in my head that started to open my eyes to the lies. Unfortunately none of that education came from my parents or my teachers. It was all self-taught.
edit on 3-12-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 03:34 PM
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Looking at what alcohol and tobacco does to youngsters is marijuana really that bad? I don't think kids should have it unless it's a medical issue but compared to what the alternatives are?

Kids who chainsmoke since the age of 5? I've known two in my life. Of course I went to school in the Catskills so if it was alcohol or tobacco it was harder stuff, not including the stunning lack of genetic diversity in the area (literally, everybody is everybody's cousin, brother, uncle, sister by parent's casual relations and the county has a huge concentration of special needs, unemployment and crime).

The plant has medicinal benefits, it's easier on the body than the alternatives. I wouldn't want a little kid smoking for kicks but if they had a legitimate medical issue then I don't know why they can't take it other ways....



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 03:42 PM
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the kids must be warned of the perils of the demon weed!!




posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 05:36 PM
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well i say
legalize
and i will worry about my kid.
your kids(not you OP...i just mean other people) and their drug issues or lack of have nothing to do with me

you know, be a parent



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 07:11 PM
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Maybe the best solution is just not to have kids. Problem solved by avoiding the problem altogether. Next. Kidding of course. Obviously the social stigmas play a much larger role in what is legal or illegal, as it has nothing to do with what is actually dangerous. The alcohol-marijuana comparison proves this point. Alcohol is more dangerous, causes more deaths and more health problems, is addictive, and is just worse for your body, yet it is socially acceptable. It seems to me that there are individuals who simply cannot seperate the stigma from reality. They call these "conservative values," or just "values," as if they are somehow morally correct, when this is simply not the case. Children are going to learn everything one way or another. Think of all the stuff you know, because your kids will learn all that at some point. So parents should probably decide the best way for their kids to learn that stuff, and then take whatever action may be necessary. If you think they should learn it "on the streets" then don't talk to them about it. If on the other hand parents want their kids to learn the truth and to buck the social stigmas, then they should teach them. But my advice is not to lie to your kids, because they will learn the truth eventually. But I don't want to give parenting advice when I have never had any kids...I think I'll start with a monkey, sort of like how they used to give children eggs to take care of. Same principle. But then I might forget that a human child won't catch the tree branch, and things could end badly.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 07:18 PM
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a reply to: JiggyPotamus

It has always puzzled me why people think it is better to hide their children from the truth like they honestly believe that they won't learn the truth eventually anyways. And a lot of times when they learn the real truth it causes backlash and misunderstandings.
edit on 3-12-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 07:37 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Treat it like Nicotine or Alcohol, they can't have any till they are 21 or 18 depending upon the state. Not much of an argument with most people even the heavily pro Marijuana people should be against little kids getting into the pot.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 08:03 PM
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a reply to: Royal76

The way I see it. It is easier to keep it out of the hands of minors if it is legal. When it is illegal, a kid can just go to a dealer, give him some money, and he'll get a bag no questions asked. When it is legal, it has to be sold in a store that is subject to the law (and spot checks by the police like they do with liquor stores) and can get shutdown for selling to kids.



posted on Dec, 3 2014 @ 08:19 PM
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thats a tough one..friend of mine has been using weed since high school and never seemed to grow up.. he is 50, do we want that to happen to our kids? Ive seen the same affect in other people also..Im not against MJ just cautious for young developing minds.



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