Legalizing recreational marijuana is the most stupid policy ever proposed in view of the damning evidence against two other legalized substances, tobacco and alcohol, which although regulated are responsible for many diseases, deaths, and social costs to society.
Specifically, recreational use of marijuana has been shown to have serious medical and psychological effects, and no sane legislator would be so oblivious to the facts just to generate tax revenue.
A study by Abood & Martin found that marijuana use is significantly correlated with memory impairment and defects in conceptualization, learning, attention, and signal detection. Studies have also linked marijuana smoking with bronchial irritation and inflammation, and signs of early stages of emphysema.
What about second-hand pot smoke, which nonsmokers will be forced to breathe in public places and accommodations?
Driving while intoxicated on marijuana is more dangerous than drunk driving, since one may deceptively feel capable of driving yet impaired in motor functions for four to eight hours. How will MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and de Blasio's zero-tolerance against pedestrian car accidents counter the pothead drivers on the road?
And what shall the state do with the excise tax of $50 per ounce of marijuana and the locally authorized sales tax? Well, a portion of the tax revenue collected by the sale of marijuana would go into substance-abuse and job-training programs in low-income, high-unemployment communities.
It is absolutely illogical to encourage recreational drug use in general, and concomitantly apportion the taxes to drug treatment programs. Let's put the kibosh on any recreational pot plans immediately.
Joseph N. Manago