Opinion » Letters

Marijuana is not addictive

San Luis Obispo

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Norm Jackson’s stance against legalizing marijuana (“Legalizing marijuana makes no sense,” June 17) is rooted in embellishments. He falsely classified marijuana into the same group of mind-altering substances as alcohol, claimed it is addictive, and embraced the ultimate slippery slope fallacy: Legalizing marijuana would lead to societal instability.

Addiction is a special term reserved only for those substances that cause users to be unable to consistently abstain, and without treatment will lead to disability or even death. This is undeniably true of alcohol: Doctors and emergency room staff would testify to the detrimental physiological and behavioral effects of alcohol. Liver damage, brain damage, and overdose are dangers of drinking. However, no medical doctor would say these symptoms are likely to occur from regular use of marijuana.

I sympathize with everyone who’s lost family and friends to drivers impaired by legal or illegal drugs. Unfortunately, whether it’s legal or illegal to consume certain substances, there will always be some people making irresponsible decisions when it comes to medication. The enemy is not marijuana; it’s ignorance.

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