Vice Squad
Tuesday, July 20, 2004
"Stronger marijuana poses risk for young"

That's the title appearing on Yahoo's homepage right now (12:18 AM, CDT) linking to this Reuters story. The story itself is only slightly less balanced, but it does include some comments from a marijuana legalization advocate towards the end. The worrying news of more kids in treatment for marijuana is not challenged, however: "The number of children and teen-agers in treatment for marijuana dependence and abuse has jumped 142 percent since 1992, the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University reported in April." (Here's one challenge, from the Drug WarRant archives.) But the really bad news is in the second paragraph of the Reuters report:

"Pot is no longer the gentle weed of the 1960s and may pose a greater threat than cocaine or even heroin because so many more people use it. So officials at the National Institutes of Health (news - web sites) and at the White House are hoping to shift some of the focus in research and enforcement from "hard" drugs such as cocaine and heroin to marijuana."

It's about time that we started to think about arresting marijuana users! Oh, wait, we already arrest more than 700,000 such users per year? Never mind.

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