An argument for voting ‘No’ on Prop 207

This statute would essentially legalize marijuana for those over 21. The precise rules, such as the limit of 6 marijuana plants, don’t matter because once you take the police out of this business, the rules will become a kind of honor system. Here are the arguments for. Here are the arguments against.

There are over 100 unique essays urging a ‘No’ vote. Some bear multiple signatures. The essays come from our Catholic bishops, our governor, many of our legislators, and from medical professionals, law enforcement, psychiatric counselors, and parents, people who have experienced the effects of marijuana on their children.

There are 10 essays urging a ‘Yes’ vote, two from Chad Campbell, first in his capacity as the sponsor of this legislation, and a second one, in which he presents himself as a private citizen. (He is, in fact, an executive for the advocacy firm Strategies 360.) There are two essays from retired politicians predicting job creation by the marijuana industry. There is an essay from a lawyer lamenting harshness of the punishments under existing law. The rest are from commercial sellers of marijuana.

Will Humble (director of Arizona Public Health Association, an advocacy organization) submitted the same essay under both ‘Yes’ and ‘No.’ He predicts both costs and benefits.

The recent book Tell Your Children, by Alex Berenson, makes two points:

  1. we have long experience of alcohol, but almost none with today’s high-potency THC.
  2. there is lots of evidence that, for some people, THC is a gateway drug, and for some, THC may cause violent, psychotic behavior.

No one knows for sure what will happen if this legislation passes, but the most important thing to realize is that if it passes in this form, as a ballot initiative, bypassing the legislature, we cannot easily undo it or amend it if it turns out to be a mistake.

To love thy neighbor as thyself means wanting good outcomes for your neighbors. There are no good outcomes in drugs.

Vote ‘No’ on Proposition 207. If you think marijuana should be legalized, tell your representatives in the legislature.

Here is a recent report from Colorado.