Letters to the Editor

Our ‘progressive’ leaders are too cavalier about the dangers of marijuana

In this Sept. 15, 2015 file photo, marijuana plants are a few weeks away from harvest in the "Flower Room" at the Ataraxia medical marijuana cultivation center in Albion, Ill.
In this Sept. 15, 2015 file photo, marijuana plants are a few weeks away from harvest in the "Flower Room" at the Ataraxia medical marijuana cultivation center in Albion, Ill. AP

I opened The Tribune one morning and read the headline “Marijuana crackdown is so yesterday” in the Opinion section (March 11). I had just returned home from co-facilitating an early morning men’s group attended by guys recovering from some form of addiction. They shared stories of broken lives and devastated families.

A few days prior, I spent time with a young man who had just lost his job as a result of recurrent psychotic episodes he claims were initially triggered by pot use. Two other young men connected to our church are fighting ongoing mental issues they say were initiated or exacerbated by marijuana abuse. As a guy who used and misused marijuana in my late teens and early 20s, I am familiar with its negative impact.

It seems so ironic that some of our “progressive” community leaders gloat about outlawing cigarette use in public places in San Luis Obispo, yet seem cavalier in their attitudes toward recreational marijuana. The medicinal applications have merits, but societal endorsement by community leaders seems very short-sighted. I thought our community goals were to keep “progressing” toward healthy mental and physical lifestyles, not endorse destructive ones?

Mike Sparrow, San Luis Obispo

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