Nevada Attorney General Adam Laxalt has come out against a ballot measure set to go before the voting public in the upcoming November election that aims to legalize a taxed and regulated cannabis industry similar to the one currently underway in Colorado.
It was during a recent press conference that Laxalt, standing alongside the Nevada Sheriffs’ and Chiefs’ Association, took a stand against the concept of bringing a legal cannabis trade to Nevada, regurgitating the same played out propaganda that all of marijuana’s opposing forces across the nation choose to cite when speaking to the public about the so-called “dangers” of legalization: It will be a detriment to the children, lead to increased rates of addiction, and motor vehicle impairment along Nevada’s scenic roadways.
“None of us care if a 60-year-old baby boomer is smoking marijuana at home. That’s not our concern as it relates to this ballot measure,” Laxalt said. “Our biggest concern is this ballot initiative was written by major marijuana interests that their biggest concern is making money,” and “when you legalize a drug in our community, you put more impaired drivers onto the road that we all have to share.”
The proposal that will go before Nevada voters this November was designed by the “Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol,” which seeks to make retail weed available to adults 21 and over. It will impose the same type of strict regulations found in Colorado, which the latest data finds is keeping marijuana out of the hands of the state’s youth.
“The survey shows marijuana use has not increased since legalization, with four of five high school students continuing to say they don’t use marijuana, even occasionally,” according to a news bulletin published by the Colorado Department of Health.
Campaign spokesman Joe Brezney recently told KOLO News Now 8 that state officials are obviously drinking from a cup of confusion and misguided intent because their argument against legal marijuana implies the state should continue to put its “support behind drug cartels and gangs instead of regulated Nevada businesses.”
“Their position is no different than if they had come out in support of Al Capone and other leaders of organized crime toward the end of alcohol prohibition,” he said.
Attorney General Laxalt’s anti-legalization comments mirrored those expressed last week by the Nevada Sheriffs’ and Chiefs’ Association. Both parties are concerned that the passing of “Question 2” will lead to cannabis edibles become a savage scourge across the Nevada landscape — sending kids to emergency rooms for THC overdoses at an alarming rate.
Laxalt even went as far as to suggest these edibles accidents were killing kids.
“There have been many reported deaths and overdoses from children that unknowingly ingested edibles,” Laxalt said.
Yet, as Reason Magazine’s senior editor Jacob Sullum pointed out in his recent analysis of unintentional marijuana exposure in Colorado children, “Marijuana still accounts for a minuscule share of emergency room visits and poison center calls for children 9 and younger: about 0.6 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively. Furthermore, the harm suffered is usually not serious.”
No children have died from accidental ingestion of marijuana edibles.
Laxalt is also worried that legal weed will turn the Nevada highways into a bloody scene of vehicular fatalities. However, recent report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety indicates that is not necessarily true. While some of the data shows an increase in drivers testing positive for THC — marijuana’s active component – the study found no evidence to “indicate that drivers with detectable THC in their blood at the time of the crash were necessarily impaired by THC or that they were at fault for the crash.”
Interestingly, the noise coming from Nevada officials is not much different than the opposing juices spewing from the mouth of Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper prior to the passing of Amendment 64. Hickenlooper once called the legalization of marijuana “reckless,” but now his opinion has changed.
“I think we’ve made real progress. And there might be a way to have a better system come out of this… I am not as negative as I was,” Hickenlooper told Katie Couric. “I am cautiously optimistic, like we might actually do this. This is going to be one of the biggest experiments of the 21st century.”