The Effects Of Legalization Of Marijuana On Children
The nationwide efforts to legalize the use of marijuana have started to see positive results. Eighteen states and the District of Columbia have already established a lead by legalizing the use of medical marijuana. Among these eighteen states, Washington and Colorado have taken measures to legalize cannabis use for both medical as well as recreational purposes. However, seldom discussed is the effect of these actions on the future generation of the country.
The Justice Department has clearly stated that the effect of legalization on children would be a major factor in framing their response to the legalization of marijuana in the states of Washington and Colorado. The marijuana effects on children, though unpredictable now, can be of serious consequences in the future.
Attorney General Eric Holder expressed his own concerns with regard to this subject and said, “When it comes to these marijuana initiatives, I think among the kinds of things we will have to consider is the impact on children, along with factors such as violence connected to trafficking and organized crime.” He expressed his opinions in front of the Congress as well as in the House Appropriations subcommittee. When asked about the ballot initiatives that passed last year aimed at the legalization of marijuana, Holder said, “We are certainly going to enforce federal law.”
The Obama administration has taken a clear stand with regard to the implementation of federal law in the states where marijuana use has been legalized. In an ABC interview, the President himself stated that the federal government has no intention to prosecute recreational marijuana users in the states of Colorado and Washington where it has already been legalized. The Obama administration added that they are not completely in favor of the decision, owing to many factors including the yet unknown marijuana effects on children.
People like Rep. Andy Harris who is a Maryland Republican, were not quite happy with the governments stand on the matter and has urged the Justice Department to take a bolder stand that would send a clear-cut message to the youth of America that marijuana is not really a safe drug. “Your department could choose to attempt to overturn those laws. Kids need clear messages and I’m afraid we’re not sending them one,” said Harris.
Rep. Andy Harris directly expressed his worry to Attorney General Eric Holder regarding the impending the decision and asked, “Because children are dying from drugs. It is a scourge … can you give me a general idea of when that decision’s going to be made?” The response from Holder was a flaccid “As quick as we can.”