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Legalization of Marijuana

Arguments Against

Nevada law classifies possession of one ounce of marijuana a misdemeanor subject to a ticket and a fine. Therefore, we believe law enforcement and courts are not over-burdened with minor marijuana offenses.

Statements regarding the number of persons charged with a marijuana offense are misleading because they do not differentiate between a person who gets a ticket for a small amount of marijuana and a trafficker with several tons.

We believe laws prohibiting marijuana sends the message to our youth that it is a dangerous drug. Legalization of marijuana for adults will increase use by minors. When Alaska permitted the private use of marijuana, use among children rose rapidly reaching

twice the national average. A Canadian study found that the country’s liberal marijuana policies have resulted in Canadian youth topping all other nations for frequent use of marijuana. The lead  researcher attributes the increased use to affordability, availability and acceptability.

After marijuana became legal and sold in smoke shops in the Netherlands, consumption nearly tripled among 18 to 20 year olds. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Managers Supervisors Association, the Las Vegas Police Protective Association Metro and the Nevada Sheriffs’ and Chiefs’ Association, believe criminals profiting from illegal drug sales won’t be out of business, they will likely increase efforts to expand the number of underage users. Nationwide, Marijuana was involved in more than 215,000 emergency department visits impacting an already burdened emergency care system.

Smoking a marijuana cigarette deposits about three to five times more tar into the lungs than one filtered cigarette. Smoking three to four joints per day causes as much harm to the respiratory system as smoking a full pack of cigarettes a day. Marijuana smoke contains 50 to 70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than tobacco smoke.

Subject to certain exceptions, doctors, teachers, bus drivers, police, firefighters, and others over the age of 21 would be “exempt from arrest, civil penalty” and CANNOT face “discipline by any state or local licensing board” for “possession, transfer or use of one ounce or less of marijuana” if Question 7 passes. Marijuana users have 55% more industrial accidents than non-users and have been shown to have a 78% increase in absenteeism over non-users. Workers who tested positive for marijuana use had disciplinary problems at work 64% more often than workers who test negative for marijuana. Accident records from one study showed that up to 12% of non-fatally injured drivers and up to 16% of fatally injured drivers had marijuana in their bloodstream.

The above argument was submitted by the Ballot Question Committee composed of

citizens opposed to this question as provided for in NRS 293.252