Marijuana Research Paper

Willie Livingston
Mr. Wirth

Marijuana and Teens
Although studies have failed to show the full effects and consequences of marijuana, there is much evidence to prove that there are negative effects on many aspects of life, especially for teenage users. This use of marijuana in the youth demographic is becoming a more pressing issue due to the availability and changing legal status of the drug. This issue is even more prevalent in Colorado due to the recent legalization of recreational marijuana and the concentration of shops and dispensaries where the drug can be purchased. Despite some measures to change the legality of the drug, marijuana is still highly illegal, and for children under the age of 21 it can be very damaging to the brain, body, and life of a young person. Although marijuana has both beneficial medical and recreational purposes, it is still a drug and has no place in the life of a person with a developing brain (“Marijuana Facts, p.37).
One of the biggest issues involved with the use of marijuana with teenagers is the combination of drug use and driving. Many teens don’t believe that marijuana effects driving and think that it is ok to drive high; however, marijuana is the most common illegal drug involved in automobile fatalities. In fact, marijuana is found in around 14% of all drivers who have been involved in a fatal automobile accident. Marijuana affects many of the skills that are imperative in operating an automobile. Some of these effects involve impaired alertness, slowed reaction times, and reduced concentration. All of these effects can culminate in a driver who is unaware or simply unable to safely operate a moving vehicle. These situations where teens are impaired or have slow reaction times are particularly dangerous because many teens are not fully aware of all the measures necessary for safe driving. Although many studies show that drinking and driving is still far more hazardous than high driving, slowed reaction...