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Mon Dec 12, 2011, 03:49 AM

Legalizing Marijuana Reduces Traffic Fatalities

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/11/29/study-legalizing-medical-marijuana-reduces-traffic-fatalities/

From a study by the Institute for the Study of Labor

Opponents of medical marijuana often focus on the social detriment to making America’s most valuable cash crop available to those approved by doctors, arguing that medical marijuana legalization makes it easier for teens to buy pot and that they’ll soon move to more dangerous drugs. They also suggest that legalization would increase the number of vehicle accidents — and that very argument was one of the main reasons why California voters did not approve full legalization in 2010.

Studying data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, researchers also found that legalizing medical marijuana did, in fact, drive up usage among adults. But contrary to medical marijuana critics’ claims, they were unable to find evidence of it growing the number of minors on the drug.

A further analysis of data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System, spanning from 1990 to 2009, revealed that states which legalized medical marijuana saw a decline in alcohol consumption. A decline in traffic fatalities was a direct side effect of that.

Traffic fatalities are the leading cause of death for Americans age 35 and under.


It seems the real problem with legalizing marijuana is that it would negatively impact the alcohol industry and reduce traffic fatalities. OH NOES!1!! think about the children!

6 replies, 1240 views

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Arrow 6 replies Author Time Post
Reply Legalizing Marijuana Reduces Traffic Fatalities (Original post)
RainDog Dec 2011 OP
eridani Dec 2011 #1
RainDog Dec 2011 #2
eridani Dec 2011 #3
RainDog Dec 2011 #4
eridani Dec 2011 #5
RainDog Dec 2011 #6

Response to RainDog (Original post)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 04:25 AM

1. Correlation is not causation, even if our side likes the results

The study certainly does NOT show that driving while high is safe.

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Response to eridani (Reply #1)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 04:27 AM

2. that's not the argument

the argument is that people reduce the amount of alcohol they drink when cannabis is legally available (via dispensaries at this point.)

Because they drink less, there are fewer alcohol-related accidents.

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Response to RainDog (Reply #2)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 05:22 AM

3. That people drink less in those states is a correlation

Medical MJ does not necessarily cause it.

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Response to eridani (Reply #3)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 05:24 AM

4. well then, let's have more studies

I'm just reporting what the researchers said.

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Response to RainDog (Reply #4)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 05:43 AM

5. I agree with that

We all have a tendency to favor our own viewpoints, even researchers. Years ago, before everything was online, there was a study of errors made by researchers transcribing cloud chamber results. They also answered questions on their opinions of various current theories. Turned out there was a statistically significant tendency for their errors to favor the theories they favored.

This is interesting because it isn't fraud, just operation at the subconscious level. Reanalysis of Mendel's pea date shows that his results were just a little too good also.

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Response to eridani (Reply #5)

Mon Dec 12, 2011, 05:48 AM

6. true

which is why rescheduling from I to II would make research easier.

the researchers in this report also cite other reports that indicate experienced cannabis users are safer drivers than drunk drivers.

the worst drivers combined the two.

here's Slate's take on this report: http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/explainer/2011/11/does_marijuana_make_you_a_more_dangerous_driver_than_alcohol_.html

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