Wed, Feb. 19

Letter: Let’s avoid the slippery slope that comes with legalization of marijuana

After reading the article in the Aug. 11 Verde Independent, I was moved to write in response.

The lead headline was about the push to legalize the use of recreational marijuana.

Of course the push is coming from the industry itself, which has their own bottom line as their motivation.

It is no help to society. They claim that the initiative is ‘smart and safe’, but I have to agree with Yavapai County attorney Sheila Polk, who said that it is neither smart nor safe.

The claim of the proponents of legalizing recreational marijuana say that there will be financial benefits to schools, public safety, health programs, and road repair.

Sin taxes from other sources such as alcohol, tobacco, gambling, etc., may have had a little financial impact, but the negative results on personal health, finances, and well-being have overwhelmingly negated anything positive from those revenues.

By legalizing a product that is against federal law, has minimal therapeutic if any, is not FDA approved, we are going down another slippery slope. We send a message to our young people that it is good and worthwhile.

For sure they will be getting a hold of it as minors, just like they do with alcohol, tobacco, and vaping. It has been shown that marijuana has negative effects on the developing brain of adolescents.

Our young people need all the help they can get during their development. The human brain is the most valuable gift and endowment for humanity.

Do we want another product available that can cause addiction, habituation, and dependence?

Do we want to handcuff employers in being able to find employees that have the ability to pass drug test and have good cognitive abilities?

Don’t we want our drivers to be safe, for our medical personnel, pilots, etc., to be alert and attentive?

Let’s vote No on any marijuana initiative.

Dr. James P. Joseph, DDS

Dr. Matthew Kelly, Ph.D.

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