Wed | Aug 4, 2021

Educate masses on dangers of marijuana

Published:Saturday | June 12, 2021 | 12:06 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

The rampant and indiscriminate use of marijuana is becoming a chronic national problem which needs to be urgently addressed.

Marijuana is addictive and contains mind-altering chemicals, the main one being THC, which is a psychoactive compound in cannabis that produces the high sensation. The most worrying trend is that research has shown that a number of young people think that consuming marijuana is not dangerous and risky. This is mainly because of the desensitisation over time because of the legalisation for medical use and for adult recreational use. These actions by governments across the world have created confusion and are giving mixed messages, including law enforcement locally, who seem to have literally turned a blind eye to the rampant and illegal use of the drug.

It has got to the point where I have seen advertisements encouraging youths to get ‘high’ at various legally established commercial outlets, if they want to perform better in sports. This has been championed by one of our revered footballers.

There needs to be widespread community education on the laws pertaining to the use of marijuana and on the negative effects of its use on the brain development of children and adolescents.

As a society, we need to decide where we want to go and how we are going to get there. It would suffice to say we cannot get there by losing half of our youths because of marijuana abuse and the lack of education on the dangers of this strong narcotic, mind-altering drug.

DAVE CARRUTHERS

Portmore, St Catherine