Pubdate: Sun, 01 Mar 2015
Source: Tampa Tribune (FL)
Copyright: 2015 The Tribune Co.
Author: Ray Strack
Page: Y3


The Florida Sheriffs Association did not support state Sen. Jeff 
Brandes' bill for medical marijuana. But sheriffs are not medical 
experts. The issue they should be concerned with - public safety - 
actually improved in the first dozen states to allow medical 
marijuana. According to peer-reviewed studies, prescription drug 
overdose death rates are down, as well as the violent crime rate, 
when compared to the other 38 states.

Additionally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 
found that crash risk for drivers who tested positive for THC did not 
show a significant increase after adjusting for age, gender, 
ethnicity and alcohol concentration. Although I would never advocate 
for driving while intoxicated, research like this is instrumental to 
writing effective policy. The sheriffs are well intentioned, but they 
should leave medical issues to doctors, the lawmaking to lawmakers, 
and solve crimes.

Ray Strack, Ft. Lauderdale
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