Pubdate: Sat, 17 May 2014
Source: Hartford Courant (CT)
Copyright: 2014 The Hartford Courant
Author: Trudy Horan


Regarding the Buzz poll [May 12, "Should State Legalize Pot?"], why 
is so much evidence surrounding this issue being ignored?

There are numerous ongoing studies from New York to New Zealand on 
the negative effects of marijuana.

In the 1960s, as a student nurse, I learned that the substance could 
alter genes. At that time, the amount of THC in a joint was about 2 
percent. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, today the 
average joint is 12%.

No one denies the plant succeeds in relieving chemo-induced nausea, 
but there are synthetic meds in pill form (nabilone and dronabinol) 
that are FDA-approved that accomplish the same thing.

One of the studies at Columbia has documented some of the side 
effects: increased likelihood of cancer, impaired immune sysytem, 
earlier onset of psychoses. Marijuana affects your brain. Should we 
be exploring a relationship to autism?

While alcohol (in moderation) has a cardiovascular benefit, no proven 
health benefit exists for marijuana.

Last year the DEA released this statement "Legalization of marijuana, 
no matter how it begins, will come at the expense of our children and 
public safety. It will create dependency and treatment issues, and 
open the door to use of other drugs, impaired health, delinquent 
behavior and drugged drivers."

Trudy Horan, Old Saybrook
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