Driving will get more exciting as pot use surges

  “American Landscape,’’ by Jan A. Nelson (graphite on Strathmore rag, 1974).    — Jan.anders.nelson

“American Landscape,’’ by Jan A. Nelson (graphite on Strathmore rag, 1974).

— Jan.anders.nelson

From Robert Whitcomb’s “Digital Diary,’’ in GoLocal24.com

Some states, including in New England, are blithely rushing into legalizing marijuana use, in large part to get tax revenue from pot sales, setting aside the inconvenient fact that use of the drug undermines memory, concentration and reasoning and causes accidents. And it can be a gateway drug for stronger stuff.

Consider, for example, that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that Washington, Colorado and Oregon, which have legalized the drug, now have 5.2 percent more vehicle crashes than neighboring states.

"Despite the difficulty of isolating the specific effects of marijuana impairment on crash risk, the evidence is growing that legalizing its use increases crashes," said institute president David Harkey, as quoted in thedrive.com.

"The {institute’s}new research on marijuana and crashes indicates that legalizing marijuana for all uses is having a negative impact on the safety of our roads. States exploring legalizing marijuana should consider this effect on highway safety." Just what we need in our attention-deficit times!

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