California recently became the fifth state to “legalize” recreational marijuana even though the substance is still classified by the federal government as a Schedule 1 drug, and is illegal under federal law in all 50 states.
The other states that have legalized recreational marijuana are Washington, Oregon, Nevada and Colorado.
This sets up a dangerous conflict between the federal and state governments that could lead to a constitutional crisis.
The Obama administration had a policy of discouraging the enforcement of federal law in states that had legalized marijuana. However Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked that policy and gave U.S. attorneys discretion to enforce federal law.
But more importantly, the nationwide campaign to legalize marijuana has major concerns for many health-related organizations. Among the health concerns, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are brain health, cancer, heart health, lung health, second-hand marijuana smoke, mental health, poisoning and the risk of using other dangerous drugs.
The CDC notes that some people think marijuana is not truly “addictive” or that people can’t become “hooked” on the drug, but research shows that about 1 in 10 marijuana users will become addicted. In addition, it states, for people who begin using before the age of 18, that number rises to one in six.
“It is also important to be aware that the amount of tetrahydrocannabinoil (THC) in marijuana (ie., marijuana potency) has increased over the past few decades,” the CDC reports.
The American Lung Association points out that marijuana smoke contains many of the same toxins and carcinogens as tobacco smoke and there are also health concerns about pediatric poisonings caused by accidental ingestion of edible marijuana.
“It is also important to remember that marijuana affects children differently than adults. Since marijuana has become legal in some states, children have accidentally eaten marijuana products that looked like candy and treats, which made them sick enough to need emergency care,” the CDC notes,
There seems to be a rush in the nation to legalize marijuana, but with it are coming a host of legal, constitutional and health concerns that could have very negative impacts on the entire nation.