[Letter to the Editor (LttE)]

I am planning to vote against the proposal to legalize marijuana now in the Vermont House of Representatives. It came over to us from the Senate about ten days ago.

Here are some of the reasons why I think I should vote no:

  • Research completed by the American Academy of Pediatrics shows a decrease of eight IQ points from adolescence to adulthood among heavy users of marijuana who started in adolescence. This drop is comparable to the decrease experienced by children who have high exposure to lead.
  • There is a documented negative impact on brain development, both in structure and function. Keep in mind the young brain matures until the person is in mid twenties. True especially for boys.
  • Poorer working memory is evident, poorer visual scanning and less cognitive flexibility, and decreased concentration.
  • There is significantly reduced chance of completing high school and of degree attainment.
  • Increase use of illicit drugs, mental illnesses and increased suicide attempt.
  • As the perceived risk goes down, usage goes up, especially among teens.

Also I have learned that in the first year of legalizing marijuana in Colorado the number of 12-17 year olds using increased eight percent. The number of 18-25 year olds increased eleven percent.

Every police officer with whom I have spoken opposes it.

I want to hear from you. Let me know what you are thinking about this issue. Contact Me!

Rep. Carolyn Branagan
Franklin-1, Georgia
Vermont House of Representatives

By | 2017-05-23T16:07:07+00:00 April 1st, 2016|2016Session, LetterToTheEditor|3 Comments

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3 Comments

  1. Robert Lutz April 1, 2016 at 2:30 pm - Reply

    I agree. Passage is a sellout and nothing else. Thanks.

  2. K. R. Conger April 1, 2016 at 9:50 pm - Reply

    Carolyn,

    I am glad to hear you will be voting against legalization In addition to the points you made , I am concerned about the repercussions from”second hand smoke” on our youngest and most vulnerable lives. It would be very difficult to police all the in home use to protect the young ones.

  3. Pearl Gilbert April 1, 2016 at 9:51 pm - Reply

    Thank you Carolyn for your decision. It is one I strongly agree with. Mitch our addiction problems in VT presently and getting worse I feel this is a correct position to take. In 1962 I did a research paper on marijuana and even back then it recognized the memory issues, and stated it was a gateway drug to stronger addictions. I worked with a gentleman back in late 80’s who was a daily user. I was responsible for,his on job training. So frustrating each day to have to start at ground zero because he could not remember a thing he learned from the previous day. I pray VT wakes ups soon and stops just being greedy and looking at the $$$

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