Teens Getting Diverted Medical Marijuana? Advocates Respond
A new study out of Colorado claims to show that a lot of medical marijuana is being diverted into the hands of non-patients, specifically into the hands of teenagers.
Advocates are responding, like Michael Elliott, executive director of the Medical Marijuana Industry Group in Colorado. "Since Colorado regulated the sale of medical marijuana in 2010, Colorado has seen decreases in youth marijuana consumption, suicides, traffic fatalities, and crime. All of these studies point to one conclusion -- Colorado's medical marijuana framework is working," Elliot says, adding, "MMIG's members are responsible business owners who support rigorous enforcement of the Colorado Medical Marijuana Code, and work to ensure the industry is run with the highest standards."
Mason Tvert from the advocacy group SAFER also spoke out, saying, "We have hundreds of state-legal cannabis businesses operating in Colorado and they were able to cite a few dozen examples of problems over the past three years -- and relatively few were from 2012." Tvert is one of the sponsors behind Amendment 64 in Colorado, which would legalize and regulate marijuana like alcohol.
The fact is that opponents of medical marijuana have put themselves in a very tough position. They have to justify why sick people shouldn’t have the option of medical cannabis, an unjustifiable position. So they must claim doom and gloom about stoned teenagers running around everywhere and destroying society.
But as it the case with alcohol and cigarettes, if you want to limit teen exposure to something, you put it in a legal and regulated market. Drug dealers do not check I.D. It is literally impossible for teens to get something easier in a legal market as opposed to an illegal one, because only legal markets have any kind of “safeguards” at all regarding age.
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