Marijuana smokers everywhere rejoiced when the legalization of marijuana took center stage in Colorado. The scent of those legal green leaves now drifts out of local neighborhoods, but the decline in society has anything but a calming effect.
The Gazette reports, “Five years later, we remain an embarrassing cautionary tale.” The disappointing statistics range from increased drug use in K-12 schools, area homelessness topping the most growth in the country, and fatal, drug-related automobile accidents skyrocketing in number.
“The number of drivers who tested positive for marijuana use jumped 145 percent,” reports the Denver Post. Expect a heightened awareness on the effects of drugging and driving to follow the drastic increase in traffic incidents caused by drivers under marijuana’s influence. “The 2013-16 period saw a 40 percent increase in the number of all drivers involved in fatal crashes in Colorado, from 627 to 880, according to the NHTSA data.”
Teen drug use in Colorado is the highest in the nation, leading authorities to wonder what the overall effect will be on a nation already struggling with an addiction epidemic. According to Colorado’s Marijuana Accountability Coalition, “It’s one thing to decriminalize marijuana, it’s an entirely different thing to legalize an industry that has commercialized a drug that is devastating our kids and devastating whole communities.”
The Marijuana Accountability Coalition aims to create a momentous drive towards an effect on policy by uniting “one common purpose: to fearlessly investigate, expose, challenge, and hold the marijuana industry accountable.” The “Are you better off that you were 5 years ago” campaign will likely be followed by one addressing the dangers of “drugged driving.”
Five years later, the negative effects of legalizing marijuana in Colorado could statistically change the way the we consider legalization in other parts of the country.
Source: 420 Intel – United States