By: Jared Evan
For decades, libertarians and harm reduction advocates have pushed for marijuana to be legalized, and in March 2021, NYC became the 15th state to fully legalize the dreaded “devil’s weed”.
While marijuana, is legal for those 21 and over to use, many are concerned with youngsters toking the refer. The NYC department of health is concerned with this issue and is working on getting a message out.
NY Post reported: In an email blasted out last week to city doctors and public health officials, DOH chief medical officer Dr. Michelle Morse described a troubling uptick in kids puffing on pot, e-cigarettes, and hookah.
Though just 3.3 percent of city public high school kids smoke cigarettes, 17.7 percent reach for reefer, Morse wrote in the email, a copy of which was obtained by The Post.
The dept of health, also focused on the popular trend of vaping “e-juice” which has replaced smoking traditional cigarettes, especially among the youth.
Marijuana can play a roll in lower educational achievement, and this is a serious concern, much like alcohol, weed can become a serious distraction for kids. There have also been studies which show, youths smoking marijuana before their brains are fully developed can damage cognitive skills, it is safer for adults who are fully matured to smoke the weed, generally speaking it is recommended for people over 21. It is especially troubling for much younger children to smoke pot.
Legalizing marijuana has created panic, among prohibitionists since the movement has picked up steam. Social conservatives predicted literal doom and gloom when states such as Colorado and Massachusetts, legalized cannabis. The predictions of thousands upon thousands of deaths due to driving stoned, did not materialize. The predictions of a complete destruction of society over marijuana did not occur either. However, it is important to educate the youth as to why marijuana is not something growing youths should indulge in. The dangers of smoking weed to a developing human, must be stressed over unrealistic tales of terror.
Research suggests that most human brains take about 25 years to develop, though these rates can vary among men and women, and among individuals. Although the human brain matures in size during adolescence, important developments within the prefrontal cortex and other regions still take place well into one’s 20s. Marijuana can hamper the development.
The frontal lobe (prefontal cortex) is responsible for higher cognitive functions such as memory, emotions, impulse control, problem solving, social interaction, and motor function.
Proper education about cognitive development should be stressed to the youth instead of unrealistic scare tactics. Most people do not want to be lacking in the “brains department”, and this subject should be presented in a scientific mater to kids, instead of a fear mongering presentation, which has been proven to never work. Realistically, millions of adults smoke marijuana and are fully functional and productive adults.
“Moderation and education is key to having marijuana legalized. The old doom and gloom messages of the past have never worked, telling children marijuana will lead to the total road of ruination, actually lead to people trying harder and more dangerous drugs. If marijuana did not kill me, might as well try some cocaine. This has to be presented in a realistic way to the youth, they will not fall for the scare tactics, science is the key to educating them”, a marijuana advocate explained to TJV.