Af­fects of smok­ing pot re­main hazy

Edmonton Journal - - EDITORIAL -

It has taken years to per­suade in­di­vid­u­als that smok­ing causes can­cer and years to per­suade var­i­ous lev­els of gov­ern­ment, cor­po­ra­tions, schools and other or­ga­ni­za­tions to ban smok­ing in pub­lic places.

Now we are faced with a new but sim­i­lar peril which seems to par­al­lel to­bacco smok­ing. There are many un­knowns that cause us con­cern, like the ef­fects on health, ad­dic­tions, dis­tracted and im­paired driv­ing and psy­chi­atric im­pli­ca­tions.

We un­der­stand the need for med­i­cal mar­i­juana use but do we need to rush into some­thing that re­quires a lot more thought and re­search into long-term ef­fects just be­cause of the pres­sures of mar­i­juana grow­ers and by users who want eas­ier ac­cess for their habit?

Smok­ing to­bacco at­tracted an in­creas­ingly younger crowd over the years lead­ing to ad­dic­tion when they be­came adults. Why would mar­i­juana use be any dif­fer­ent?

Will we be sub­sti­tut­ing one dan­ger­ous smoke haze for another whose ef­fects of early and con­tin­ued use is as yet un­known?

Eve­lyn Mill­man, Ed­mon­ton


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