As the country begins to legalize Marijuana on a medical and recreational basis there are now 23 individual states that offer the use of Marijuana for medical purposes and four states including Washington D.C. that have approved the herb for recreational use.
With the plant becoming more accepted by the day, the question of how the government chooses to keep the medicinal herb away from children.
Pediatricians have made sure to only prescribe marijuana to youth who have seriously debilitating diseases but on the other hand, what are we to do about adolescent use.
As one state after the next decides to let down their arms about the safety and legality of the herb it has become far more accessible for adolescents to get their hands on weed. Dr. Seth Ammerman, a pediatrician at Stanford University has stated that it is not the right choice to persecute adolescents for Marijuana use.
A large portion of the united states marijuana related arrests are the product of youth getting caught up with the herb. Dr. Seth Ammerman says that youth who are persecuted for using the plant would be a public Health issue and not a criminal justice issue.
“There’s no evidence that legalizing will benefit youth, And the concern is that legalization will increase youth access to marijuana and maybe increase use.”
“Marijuana hasn’t been legal anywhere in the U.S. for very long, so no one knows how these changing laws will affect teen usage rates. But if marijuana companies start marketing their products like alcohol and tobacco companies have done, kids and teens could be affected” Ammerman says.
I strongly believe that marijuana should be available to users 18 and up on a recreational basis. Weed is something that has medical values as well as interpersonal values that can be helpful in medical and social situations, with this said at the least teens should not have to worry about being persecuted for using the plant in a state where it has been deemed legal.
So the question is now Why are we Arresting Teens for Marijuana Use?