Medical Marijuana Opponents’ Most Powerful Argument Is At Odds With A Mountain Of Research

FLORIDA:  Opponents of marijuana legalization are rapidly losing the battle for hearts and minds. Simply put, the public understands that however you measure the consequences of marijuana use, the drug is significantly less harmful to users and society than tobacco or alcohol.

But opponents still have one trick up their sleeves, and it’s proven to be a powerful and effective one: the notion that relaxed regulations on marijuana will lead to a rise in marijuana use among children and teens. Florida voters, for instance, will decide whether to legalize medical marijuana this November. Organizations opposing the measure have built their campaigns around fears about underage use.

The group Don’t Let Florida Go To Pot greets visitors to its Web site with the above image, warning that medical marijuana will turn your child into a hoodie-wearing, pot-smoking thug.
Vote No On 2 features another hoodie-clad youngster on its home page, no doubt contemplating the depravity of his existence after medical marijuana. Florida voters don’t seem to be buying any of this, though: Medical marijuana currently enjoys nearly 90 percent support in the state.


Potshots Over Florida’s Medical Marijuana Amendment

FLORIDA:  The gloves are off in the Amendment 2 battle to legalize marijuana for medical purposes.

The main pro-amendment group pleads for money for a final push while anti-amendment groups that have stayed largely in the shadows have come out swinging. Rhetoric is ramping up as each side takes potshots at the other’s credibility. The election is Nov. 4.

Supporters shouldn’t be lulled into a false sense of security by the fact Floridians are overwhelmingly in favor of medical marijuana, said Ben Pollara, manager of United for Care, the pro-Amendment 2 campaign. “We can’t take anything for granted.”

Polls show a favorability rate ranging from 60-88 percent, but they are just a snapshot in time, Pollara said. Sixty percent is needed for a constitutional amendment to pass.