The Marijuana Debate Continues

Dear readers: We apologize to those who complain that we are focusing too much on the legalization of marijuana. We will return to other topics soon.

For those following the issue, this post is a continued discussion on the possibility of voters legalizing marijuana, see and  comments for background.

Arron is a writer for CannaCentral, see

Best, Adam and the contributors to Crime in America.Net

Hi Aaron: This is a much better response than your last; it places reasonable arguments before the public.

Marijuana may be legalized. Voters throughout the country have approved an endless array of acts deemed potentially harmful. Whether you ride your motorcycle without a helmet or smoke or drink alcohol or carry a gun, voters or their representatives agreed to legalize all cited and more.

Our principle objection is the lack of an objective debate. There’s not a pot user in this country who has not seen first-hand the damage that marijuana can cause either in themselves or their friends.

The research cited in Crime in America.Net is statistical in nature; it simply documents the connection to crime or treatment admissions or accidents. It takes no position as to the legalization of marijuana and the marijuana statistics are simply one of many cited. Few within the university-based research community seem to care if marijuana is legalized or not.

Organized crime engaged in the growing or importation of marijuana is also engage in other acts. They will not go away simply because marijuana is legal. We would have to decriminalize every drug and every vice for that to occur. There is no benefit for the legalization of marijuana.

Americans want freedoms to do things that have negative statistical backing. The data on guns seems clear that guns in the home have a greater statistical chance of harming a family member than a bad guy that invades yet the right to carry guns now exists in 35 states.

The arguments of gun proponents are very similar to yours. That’s neither good nor bad; voters simply choose to ignore the data and approve gun rights.

Personal use of marijuana may be approved in similar fashion but we warn proponents that claims that marijuana is not harmful will doom your cause.

Marijuana is a powerful drug that’s statistically connected to a wide array of harmful acts; if legalized it will create immense harm for our society and create social burdens that states cannot afford. It’s impossible to look at the data and not come to that conclusion.

As to arrests, we have consistently stated that people should not be arrested for personal use. The criminal justice system has more important things to do.

But arrests are happening because marijuana is being used while driving or during criminal acts. Any officer who arrests solely for possession is creating more harm than good.

So let’s leave it up to voters. Let’s place objective data before them without all the silly rhetoric and distortion and let them decide.

We’ve approved many acts that carry social consequences. Marijuana may be one of them. Just agree to place money for safeguards (similar to gambling and counseling for destructive gambling) in place to help the many who will need it.

More importantly, if approved, create social pressure for responsible use in the same way we approach drinking and driving.

Best, Adam.



  1. Would you provide some links to references supporting this statement:
    “Marijuana is a powerful drug that’s statistically connected to a wide array of harmful acts; if legalized it will create immense harm for our society and create social burdens that states cannot afford.”
    I am reading up on the subject and have not been able to find studies which support your conclusion. I would like to have both sides of the debate.
    As for driving, I don’t condone doing it on any substance; alcohol, prescription drugs; marijuana, or other illegal substances.

    • Hi. If you go to the header of this site, it will contain a variety of marijuana related.studies supporting our conclusions.
      Best, Adam.

  2. Myth: Marijuana Use is a Major Cause Of Highway Accidents. Like alcohol, marijuana impairs psychomotor function and decreases driving ability. If marijuana use increases, an increase in of traffic fatalities is inevitable.

    Fact: There is no compelling evidence that marijuana contributes substantially to traffic accidents and fatalities. At some doses, marijuana affects perception and psychomotor performances- changes which could impair driving ability. However, in driving studies, marijuana produces little or no car-handling impairment- consistently less than produced by low moderate doses of alcohol and many legal medications. In contrast to alcohol, which tends to increase risky driving practices, marijuana tends to make subjects more cautious. Surveys of fatally injured drivers show that when THC is detected in the blood, alcohol is almost always detected as well. For some individuals, marijuana may play a role in bad driving. The overall rate of highway accidents appears not to be significantly affected by marijuana’s widespread use in society.

    Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse. “Legalization: Panacea or Pandora’s Box”. New York. (1995):36.

    Swan, Neil. “A Look at Marijuana’s Harmful Effects.” NIDA Notes. 9.2 (1994): 14.

    Moskowitz, Herbert and Robert Petersen. Marijuana and Driving: A Review. Rockville: American Council for Drug Education, 1982. 7.

    Mann, Peggy. Marijuana Alert. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1985. 265.

    • Hi: Thanks for writing.
      I have lots of friends from the 1960’s and 70’s who drove when stoned; they said that they are lucky to be alive and doubly lucky not to have killed someone.
      There is a ton of research stating that people are just as intoxicated stoned as drunk.
      Best, Adam

  3. Why do you say that Marijuana is dangerous? There is an abundance of evidence that Pot users cause very few problems and have little to no health consequences from even long term use. As I’m sure you are acutely aware, it does not cause the user to become violent or incoherent as Alcohol does. For that reason alone I think it should be available for adults to use as an alternative to Alcohol. It is available in drinks much like “a beer” and if Prop 19 passes, I really feel as though many people will switch. It’s far safer than alcohol, is not physically addictive (although it can be very habit forming, like surfing the Net) but it’s reportedly very easy to stop. It also does not lead to harder drugs. Prohibition leads children to harder drugs by forcing them to buy their recreational “Pot” from criminals who operate in the black market and who offer them harder drugs, once the kids find out we have all been lying to them about the “extreme dangers of Marihuana”.

    What is your opinion on LEAP? Those guys are all high level Law Enforcement and they all agree that Prohibition doesn’t work and they support Prop 19 as do many in Law Enforcement.

    As you say, making pot legal isn’t going to put the criminals out of business, but it will hurt them more than we’ve been able to do in all the years of the drug wars. You don’t see any Al Capone types selling Booze from backyard stills too often anymore do you?

    • Hi: Thanks for writing.
      If you read the posts on this blog you will see that marujuana is a major health and crime problem. We wish is wasn’t true, but it is.
      Best, Adam.

  4. Thank you for the response. My own political view hinges on two important observations: government is rarely a solution (that works) and personal liberty is paramount above all else. People should be free to do as they wish so long as there is no harm to anyone else in their doing so. Any public “safeguards” put into place and funded through taxation (which is coercive, not “voluntary”) are wrong. Plenty of private interests can and have covered those bases before.

    Statistics that you cite I can refute all day with more statistics that say the opposite. Gun ownership, for example, is proven, statistically, to reduce crime in areas where gun laws are liberal (owning and using a gun is easy) whereas those areas that have rampant crime and violence are always the same areas that have strict gun control. Most statistics that say otherwise are including “suicides” as “gun deaths” and “children” as anyone under the age of 23.

    Further at least two recent studies have shown that smoking marijuana and driving does not negatively affect driving ability, contrary to what Drug War types would promote. So this is also a questionable argument against marijuana’s legalization.

    I brought up my personal political philosophy at the beginning because, in the end, nearly everything I write that is commentary in nature comes from that perspective. I do not write about governmental solutions to problems because I just don’t see any that will work. On the contrary, I’ve watched most of government’s solutions to problems merely create more problems and rarely actually solve what they set out to do in the first place. The EPA is a great example of that, having been originally founded to end our dependence on oil back in the Carter days..

    I also write for other outlets such as (mostly science-based alternative medicine and health), and (alternative fuels and vehicles). I own several websites of my own that are in those same two areas of interest and ghost-write technical (computer) and financial articles. I cover many subjects, but always from a free market, freedom-centered point of view.

    Again, thanks for the back-and-forth and I apologize again for the misunderstanding at the beginning where I confused your comments with the ex-government types you were quoting.

    –Aaron Turpen

    • Hi Aaron: You and I have strong Jeffersonian groundings and you are correct that Americans want the right to engage in behavior that many see as harmful. What astounds me is that we have legalized many acts deemed “harmful.”

      While riding my motorcycle in Pennsylvania I noticed that riders in that state do not have to wear helmets.
      It’s statistically “proven” that riders without helmets have a much greater chance for serious injury yet it’s allowed.

      We make these state-by-state decisions all the time (alcohol, tobacco, guns, questionable foods) thus Jeffersonians should be able to take some pride that, even if deemed harmful, we approved it anyway.

      It could happen with marijuana.

      We never intended to enter this debate but we could not understand the objection to a reasonable and objective discussion of issues.

      For example, the research cited as to marijuana use not being connected to auto accidents seems counterintuitive. Some who advise this site smoked marijuana when young and remember driving while stoned. They state that they are lucky to be alive and doubly lucky that they did not kill someone.

      All we are suggesting that proceeding with this kind of data will doom your cause. A lot of Americans used marijuana sometime during their lives and they remember the good times and the bad.

      They know it’s a two way street.

      Best, Adam and staff.


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