A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Letter to the Editor: In order to protect state’s youth, marijuana should not be legalized in any capacity

In order to protect the youth of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the drug-free and prevention coalitions of Northern Kentucky wish to educate our communities and legislators with regard to marijuana. It is our opinion, based on the facts presented below, that marijuana use should not be legalized in any capacity.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has NOT recognized or approved the use of marijuana as a safe and effective drug for any indication (FDA.gov). Marijuana is still a Scheduled I drug, and as such is not able to be effectively researched for medicinal purposes.

Ultimately, the legalization of marijuana will lower the perception of risk. A lower perception of harm or risk historically leads to an increased usage among youth. Across the state of Kentucky, the perception of harm for marijuana continues to decrease with time (as seen below) according to the Kentucky Incentives for Prevention (KIP) Survey.

Finally, it should be noted that every state that has now legalized marijuana for “recreational” use started by legalizing marijuana for “medical” use. This is a particularly slippery slope in a region and state already so overwhelmed by substance use and abuse. We encourage our citizens and policy-makers to be mindful of our youth when making decisions that will be so impactful on our next generation.

Ben Brown, Chair, Boone County Alliance
Sarah White, Coordinator, Campbell County Drug-Free Alliance
Brian Brentlinger, Chair, Champions for a Drug-Free Gallatin County
Camille Croweak, Coordinator, Champions for a Drug-Free Grant County
Diana O’Toole, Coordinator, Kenton County Alliance
Sarah Paige Tuttle, Coordinator, Owen County Drug Prevention Task Force
Mary Pettit, Coordinator; Champions for a Drug-Free Pendleton County

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One Comment

  1. Captain Floyd says:

    These people stand to lose a lot of money if marijuana is legalized. No more court appointed sessions, and less teenagers abusing marijuana. According to the Federal Govt National Survey on Drug Use and Health it shows that states that have legalized marijuana have actually had less teen use since legalization.

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