Comments about ‘Jay Evensen: Marijuana acceptance will lead to social costs’

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Published: Thursday, Aug. 21 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Marijuana is already available here in Utah and has been since Utah was conceived. The problems claimed to be unleashed are already unleashed. Did Jay want those boys from Texas thrown in jail? He didn't mention if he wanted that. Here in Utah we could just throw them in jail. I don't want that, and the majority of Americans dont' want that either as it turns out.

Far East USA, SC

"This might not have happened if the president of the United States had decided to enforce a federal law against marijuana use."

What happened to states rights and smaller federal government?

Everett, 00

I was at a fast food place,
and I saw 2 guys...drinking a beer!

Oh brother,
It would seem that someone must not realize that prohibition was reversed nearly 100 years ago,
and that alcohol [a much more dangerous drug] is legal in all 50 states.

FYI --
Utah deaths per year --

perscription drugs - 534
Guns - 510
Automobile accidents - 420
marijuana - 0

seattle, WA

The same arguments could be made to rid the country of legal alcohol and tobacco. However, these drugs are considered safe and are widely, legally available.

There are hundreds of legal prescription drugs available and in use by people of all ages. These drugs treat a variety of legitimate afflictions, but have the same effects as those described by this LTE. However, I don't see any movement to take away the extraordinarily profitable ventures of big Pharma to rid the country of life altering addictions.

If you don't like marijuana, don't smoke it. Same goes for legal booze and cigarettes. You might even try going cold turkey on those little happy pills, if it would not drive you to suicide. Illegal drugs, like alcohol and tobacco are public health problems that should be legally available and regulated. And spend some time analyzing the over medicated country for a change. Happy pills can be every bit as deleterious.

salt lake city, UT

A silly, subjective editorial. Pot is not a social experiment, decriminalizing it is. Legalizing pot in CA & WA has had many positive effects and the sky has not fallen as predicated by opponents like Jay. As someone who travels to these states on business and has friends and family living in both you'll find most people happy with the legalization and the outcome up to this point. More states will soon be following suit because of the sucess of decriminalizing it as experienced in Washington and Colorado.

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

I wish Utah would grow up and join them, in a celebration of Freedom and Liberty, Lord know, Utah could use the revenue for education. To each they're own, intoxicants exist in all cultures, always have always will.

Ernest T. Bass
Bountiful, UT

Alcohol consumption is far worse than marijuana use.

Fitness Freak
Salt Lake City, UT

I don't use marijuana, (or booze for that matter), so I really couldn't care less whether its' legal or not.

HOWEVER; we've spent billions (trillions?)over the last 6 decades trying to combat its' use. All to basically no avail.

How many more billions should we spend? Billions that we don't have BTW!

Fiscal conservatives like myself should just give up and cut our losses.

We can no longer afford to fight the "war on drugs". Just like we can't afford to be the worlds policeman.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Pot Permissiveness just leads to permissiveness on OTHER things. It's a gradual thing. First this, then a little latitude on other drugs...

Personally I don't care if drugs are legal or not... I'm not going to use them. But there IS a social cost associated with drug use and addiction (and that includes alcohol). There's no doubting that.... look at all the people in REHAB already!


IMO Permissiveness is fine, just as long as you also give people responsibility for the CONSEQUENCES of their choices (not society).

When you need rehab... pay for it yourself, don't bill it to Medicaid or expect society to pay for it.


When you loose your job for not being able (or caring enough) to perform your job duties because of addiction or embracing the stoner-lifestyle... don't expect society to pay you unemployment to sit home and smoke it with your friends.


As long as people are OK with taking responsibility for their actions (and not expect society to bail them out for bad decisions)... I'm OK with expanding a LOT of things that are currently illegal (but are really just stupid)...

Springville, UT

This opinion piece is a sermon, not a well reasoned discussion of a public policy issue. The facts presented do not support his conclusion. And there is no discussion of the effects of the ridiculous level of incarceration, alternative approaches, or the existing prevalence of drugs now, which involves the disasterous "War on Drugs". This piece is an obfuscation. We know where the writer stands, but it's not much use.

American Fork, UT

People who are internally or externally denied something always try to find ways to deny it to others. The potheads you fear are already among you, mellow and hungry. I am not among them, by the way. I figure if we could get the Arabs and Israelis to take up pot smoking, there would be peace in the region.

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

You are correct about one thing 2bits, the big pharm companies love when they can sell addicting pills.

Most people I know on anti depressants or other psychotropics have no idea that they are addicted to them and can not stop without taking a hand full of other pills to combat the "Comedown."

Stop using heroin (another big pharm invention) and you'll wish you were dead but it won't kill you, try stopping most prescription drugs and this isn't true, even alcohol withdrawls can kill you.

...and the slippery slope argument doesn't hold water.
Pot, no overdoes, no physical addiction, (see chocolate) 5,000 years of human research should be enough.

Addictive personalities will always have trouble, like the folks i know who are addicted to AA meetings, the schedules rule their lives, yes, they are more pleasant not being drunk, but they are addicted to the meeting as a distraction from the original addiction.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

Am I sitting in Sunday School,
reading the Newspaper?

Cottonwood Heights, UT

There are far more people texting and using hand held cell phones in Washington (where hand held cell phone usage is banned) and in other states than the few would would choose to use marijuana without a designated driver. For a head line that suggested the writer was going to objectively look at "costs" this article was a piece of fluff that addressed the writer's phobias and not reality.

Michael Hunt
Murray, UT

I drink alcohol and smoke marijuana regularly while leading a productive, enjoyable life. You know what I would never touch? The stuff that comes in jars from the pharmacy. I take baby aspirin and stay physically healthy. Good luck with preventing me from engaging in my occasional intoxicants, legal or not.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Marijuana is labeled "dope" for a reason. Those who are under its influence are "dopey". Their judgement is impaired; but, that doesn't matter to those who advocate "dope". They don't care what it does to others as long as they can get it "legally". That's a "dopey" attitude. When we no longer care about the effects of drugs on society, citing, perhaps, that alcohol kills more people in Utah than "dope", then we have lost our humanity.

We guard our children against shock by inserting safety plugs in our outlets, but we throw them out with the bathwater when we minimize the harm that "dope" does to society. We let those who have too little understanding of the body to be influenced by "pushers" who want "dope".

Studies have shown that most "pushers" are also "users". Addicts want drugs so they ush those drugs on others. Two States have joined with the pushers. Those States want to make money off "dope" users by taxing "dope".

Follow the money trail. Ignore those who tell us that marijuana is less deadly than alcohol.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I don't fear pot-heads.... I just wouldn't want them in my operating room or on my team, or piloting an airplane, or driving a bus, or train (or a car for that matter).

I was making the "permissiveness leads to more permissiveness" argument. How does the slippery slope argument not hold water? Can you enlighten us or give us proof that permissiveness doesn't lead to more permissiveness? Because I can give examples where it has.

50 years ago... were we as permissive on abortion as we are today?

How about same-sex marriage... are we more accepting and permissive on that than we were say... 30 years ago??

Have we gradually gotten more permissive on premarital sex? And sex between adults who are married to other partners... The answer is yes...

And on drugs... does lessening restrictions on alcohol not help justify lessening them on MJ and other drugs? That argument's being used already... so it's hard to deny it...

Do you have proof that the slippery-slope argument DOESN'T hold water??

Have countries that legalized MJ not later legalized OTHER drugs? Yes... they have. It holds water.

Mister J
Salt Lake City, UT

re: airnaut & Ernest T

I agree w/ you both.

But, this is Utah. The state motto could be a quote from H.L. Mencken... "Puritanism is the haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy."

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

@Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah
Marijuana is labeled "dope" for a reason.


Please site the Constitution for your banning marijuana.

You are either FOR freedom, or against it.

Using a Double Standard, Picking and choosing is disingeuous and not being honest.

Coffee, Tea dn Tobacco are all legal,
but I CHOOSE not to use them.

FYI --
George Washington grew hemp.
And Brigham Young encouraged the Saints to grow hemp as well.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Hemp, hemp, hemp... George Washington grew hemp... Brigham Young grew hemp... I think we all know that there are more uses for hemp than just smoking it. Don't be a hemp-head. I suspect Brigham Young grew hemp for one of these reasons (not to smoke it).


Why do the people from ONE specific political persuasion seem to feel the need to defend recreational use of Marijuana??? Can somebody explain why it seems to be so cleanly divided on political lines?


If MJ is so safe... why can you be arrested for driving under it's influence in all 50 States? Why have we thrown train engineers and ferry drivers into jail who caused huge accidents when under the influence of this "SAFE" herb?

Can you explain why their being impaired was a problem... if hemp is completely "SAFE"?
And why they went to jail for doing this "SAFE" thing??
And why so many people have to go to REHAB to get off it?

Obviously it's not completely safe. You are just willing to overlook that fact and repeat the hemp-head rhetoric you heard somewhere.

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