Pubdate: Sun, 20 Apr 2014
Source: Arizona Republic (Phoenix, AZ)
Copyright: 2014 The Arizona Republic
Author: Sheila Polk
Note: Sheila Polk, Yavapai County attorney


If legalized, 32,000 of Arizona's high-school students who have never 
used marijuana would be more likely to try it; 76,000 high-school 
kids who have tried it would be more likely to use it again. 
Legalization means a commercialized industry that knowingly promotes 
a drug for profit, and a culture that celebrates inebriation over sobriety.

Marijuana is a mind-altering substance, more potent today than ever. 
It substitutes a drug-induced euphoria for the brain's natural reward 
system, sucking ambition and jeopardizing school performance.

One in five 12th-graders uses marijuana on a regular basis; one in 
six kids who use it will become addicted. Regular, long-term use of 
marijuana by a young person results in a 7- to 8-point loss in IQ.

Arizona does not lock up people for using marijuana. Our law 
prohibits incarceration until a third conviction, promoting instead 
treatment and drug courts.

Annually, there are three times as many alcohol-related arrests as 
marijuana. Marijuana legalization does not mean fewer arrests. It 
means more charges for driving under the influence of marijuana and 
fatalities; child neglect; more drug-dependent newborn babies; and 
public disorder - putting it on par with alcohol.

For every tax dollar collected from alcohol sales, 10 more are spent 
to address alcoholrelated criminal conduct, treatment, unemployment 
and health care.

The American Society of Addiction Medicine advises us that legal 
marijuana poses a significant public-health threat. Listen to 
science, not those motivated by profit.
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