While Americans of all ages in Colorado happily celebrate the legalization of marijuana in various forms on April 20, 2014 as a “smoking holiday” the mental health and safety risks are being ignored by the media.
Mental health dangers and marijuana use
As the national media spent a lot of time hyping the legislation passed in Colorado it spent little time in talking about recent studies that indicate pot damages the developing brain and may be one reason for the increase of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in the aging population, particularly those using it while in college. Scientific research continues to connect even casual marijuana use with severe mental illness such as schizophrenia.
Recently the British Royal College of Psychiatrists wrote
The regular use of drugs has appeared to double the risks of developing a psychotic episode on long term schizophrenia.
Even the Erowid Center, a supporter of the legalization of pot use, admits that
Marijuana worsens symptoms in some vulnerable to psychotic disorders.
Safety factors and marijuana use
Research has indicated that marijuana negatively affects the users ability to drive. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuses
….stoned drivers have more trouble staying in lanes, they struggle to do multiple tasks at once.
Media ignores the impact of marijuana use
According to the Media Research Center (MRC) the news networks ignored the risks of using pot 93 percent of the time. ABC, CBS, and NBC evening news programs rarely addressed marijuana-related mental health and safety risks.