Top Pro & Con Arguments
Legalizing marijuana increases use by teens, with harmful results.
The percentage of 12- to 17-year-olds using marijuana is higher in every legal marijuana state than the national average. For example, 16.21% of Colorado teens and 18.86% of teens in Alaska reported marijuana use in the past year, compared to an average of 12.29% for the United States overall in 2015-2016.Colorado past-month teen marijuana use jumped 20% in the two-year average after marijuana was legalized for adults.
Marijuana is especially dangerous for young people, because human brains are not fully developed until around age 25 (four years past the legal age in states that allow recreational marijuana).The American Academy of Pediatrics said that adverse effects of teen marijuana use include “impaired short-term memory and decreased concentration, attention span, and problem solving, which clearly interfere with learning. Alterations in motor control, coordination, judgment, reaction time, and tracking ability have also been documented; these may contribute to unintentional deaths and injuries.” Studies show that students who use cannabis perform worse in school. Read More