In a news release, Boyer claims alcohol "contribute[s] to violence and injuries." No dispute there, except to note that there has been little research into the role of the kind herb in traffic accidents. Several studies indicate that because the effects of dope vary widely in individuals, it's difficult to assess impairment. Statewide, in 2012, about 10 percent of people seeking help for drug dependency said their primary problem was marijuana. While that's less than those trying to deal with drinking, it's still significant. And booze-related problems have declined since 2009 by 38 percent. Those reporting troubles with wacky tabacky declined less than 6 percent over the same period and increased 17 percent between 2011 and 2012, according to the report "Substance Abuse Trends in Maine."
One reason the pro-potsters are attacking alcohol is because of a history of alcohol attacking them. Big Booze contributed heavily to anti-hemp campaigns in California in recent years. But so did the tobacco industry. And law enforcement political action committees. And the owners of medical marijuana clinics, who'd be put out of business if patients didn't need prescriptions to get their drugs.
Oddly enough, legalization proponents also claim — almost entirely without evidence — that major distillers, brewers, and cigarette companies are poised to seize the dope market once laws are changed. Which doesn't explain why they're fighting to maintain the status quo.
Contradictions, distortions, falsehoods, and phony moralism seem to be the hallmarks of the campaign to legalize marijuana. With a platform like that, you might mistake it for a candidate for governor.
Except it's even stupider.
Inhale deeply. Relax. Now that you're calm, email your comments to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
: The Editorial Page
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