Many anti-legalization groups, argued that the increased availability of Cannabis, will make teens more prone to smoking pot. But a new study has found that there is no evidence that links marijuana availability to the increase of teenage pot smoking.
The Study was conducted by the Columbia University in New York. The researchers analyzed data from 48 U.S. states totaling a number of 1 million students.
The students were in the 8th, 10th, and 12th grades and the timeline of the data collected was from 1991 to 2014.
The period of the study is very important since between the early 90’s and 2014, several states either legalized cannabis entirely or allowed it’s use for medical purposes.
The study could thus analyze the number of teen marijuana smokers before and after the increase in availability or legalization.
The study was based on data collected with government backing and pertains to a government-funded survey . Regarding the supposed increase of usage, the researchers claimed that they found no significant changes in the number of cannabis users.
This is good news, not only because it reassures some states that the legalization of marijuana did not increase the number of teen smokers, but because it also means that contrary to popular views teens do not use adult friends to procure marijuana illegally.
In the case of alcohol for example, even though young people under 21 are not allowed to drink, many find ways of procuring alcohol anyway. Fake ID’s, are sometimes used, and the availability of alcohol in the house, has created unwanted situations.
Teenagers and young adults, either steal some of the alcohol in the house that belongs to elder family members, or are sometimes even helped to procure alcoholic beverages by older siblings and friends.
The same kind of unwanted illegal consumption of marijuana was expected to affect teens, if marijuana was legalized. If the surveys and the study are right, the it seems marijuana usage may actually even decrease.
The popularity of any controversial substance, is always increased if it is made illegal, in some cases legalizing a potentially harmful item, might cause an actual drop in consumption statistics.
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