Letter: Marijuana puts youth at risk | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Marijuana puts youth at risk

Residents of both Pitkin County and Glenwood Springs have expressed concerned with the odor of marijuana production. Glenwood, however, has a greater fear of approval of applications for what could be a pot shop on every block. Our existing outlets already send plenty of messages to our youth that marijuana will be enjoyed with few consequences. We can’t tolerate more promoters.

I know of no marijuana shop in Colorado that expresses concern for our adolescents by educating them on the dangers they face with marijuana’s permanent alteration of a youth’s brain function, especially from grade school to adulthood. The ingredient in marijuana THC gradually impairs and permanently changes the way a youth’s brain cells function, affecting movement, coordination, learning, memory, judgment and pleasure. A New Zealand study found that long-term use beginning at a young age to adulthood reduced IQs by as much as eight points.

The California Environmental Protection Agency report “Evidence on the Carcinogenicity of Marijuana Smoke” found that marijuana smoke has been “clearly shown through scientifically valid testing according to generally accepted principles to cause cancer.” Of the 33 cancer-causing chemicals, the most recognizable are arsenic, benzene, cadmium, chromium, formaldehyde, lead, mercury and pyrene.

I agree with the Swiss physician Paracelsus (1493-1541), who 500 years ago revealed a scientific fact: “It is only the dose which make a thing poison.” Today, however, marijuana is an obvious and very present danger to our youth.

Floyd Diemoz

Glenwood Springs