Tuesday, March 29, 2005

In the news:

Due to several recent alcohol related deaths, college students at two Colorado colleges are attempting to get punishments for marijuana use lowered to those imposed for underage drinking. I thought the article made some really interesting points:

"If a fraternity told a freshman to go into the woods and smoke a pound of pot he is not going to die from that," said Tvert, a recent University of Virginia graduate. "He'll fall asleep before that happens."
At least 1,400 college student deaths each year are linked to alcohol, according to the National Institutes of Health. But, Tvert said, there has never been a reported case of a student dying from a marijuana overdoese. "Our stance is that alcohol is more acceptable in our society and that is just bad public policy," he said.
Now granted, marijuana use does have its side effects (i.e. lack of motivation, lack of sex drive), but it still is a really interesting argument that they are trying to make. On top of that, people who are high don't puke all over the place when they've had too much. On the other hand, do I think allowing people to smoke will increase the amount of drinking on college campuses? Probably not. However, if frats started buying into this logic and got their pledges really stoned instead of really wasted (or some combination of the two involving not quite as much alcohol), then I think the death toll figures might start coming down. Another idea, might be raising the punishments for underage drinking while simultaniously lowering them for marijuana use.


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