Dear valued constituent,
I’m writing to share some thoughts on pending legislation that would legalize “Marijuana” for recreational use in Illinois. Please keep in mind, “Marijuana” is not what the media and others have been calling it. “Cannabis”, a carefully poll-tested word making most people feel comfortable, is what it’s being called. Don’t be misled, Cannabis is the same drug as marijuana, pot, dope or weed.
I’ve researched and met with those supporting and opposing this initiative. My conclusion is legalization will be harmful to society and alarming for our young people.
The Center for Disease Control says currently 1 in 10 adults using dope regularly develops an addiction, as well as 1 in 6 adolescents. We know from data released by commercialized states these rates will increase, particularly in young adults. Legalizing another addictive substance, along with alcohol and tobacco, is simply a huge step backward for public health. 1 in 4 children said they would try dope or increase their use if legalized. What possible benefit could outweigh this? Is the message to our children getting stoned is a condoned recreational activity?
There’s zero debate in medical literature about the harm of dope. It is both physiologically and psychologically addictive. There’s no confusion about this in medical science. Dope is addictive just like alcohol, slowly, over time. Of 13 studies, 10 have shown users are at significantly increased risk of subsequently developing psychotic symptoms or schizophrenia-like psychotic illness having serious social consequences.
Road safety is a huge concern. The data is clear, states that have legalized show increased rates of drugged driving, crashes and motor vehicle claims related to drugged driving. Today’s meticulously cultivated kind, orders of magnitude stronger than dope in the past, which generally contained less than 2% Tetrahydrocannabinol THC. Today routinely contains 20 to 25% THC, thanks to sophisticated farming & cloning techniques, as well as a demand for a stronger, faster high.
Additionally, there’s a lack of reliable tests to determine if someone is currently driving impaired. We lack scientifically valid testing for THC one of the most harmful poisons in dope. Even if we try to measure blood THC level, currently this is done through a blood test, which will not be performed roadside. Employers have concerns especially those who operate trucking or heavy equipment.
Lastly, legalizing dope will not cause illegal sales to disappear. Not only will illegal sales continue, but the new open legal environment will provide additional cover and greater opportunity for illegal operations to flourish. The disturbing outcome will be more youth gaining access having a massive disproportionately negative impact on African American and Hispanic youth.
For these reasons, I oppose the legalization of dope for recreational use. Please join me in the fight to prevent our state from going down this harmful and possibly deadly road.
Thank you for your support and consideration.