When it comes to the hotly debated issue of making Washington state the first in the nation to legalize marijuana, there are a few areas that both proponents and opponents of Initiative 502 can likely agree upon.
For starters, both sides would probably agree there is no clear cut verdict on what both the short and long term effect of marijuana is on users, even though impaired judgement and memory and impaired critical thinking skills might be a conclusion many of us might make.
Two, marijuana has made a resounding rebound in popularity in young people over the past 15-20 years. From all accounts its use among high school and even middle school students is likely at record levels, though no overwhelming evidence exists to stake that claim.
And regarding medical marijuana, many of us would likely support the use of the drug for patients who genuinely need it and could be helped by it, provided tight controls were in place to limit its use to only these patients.
The problem with I-502 is that instead of addressing these issues along with the overall rampant use of the drug in our state, it simply allows us to avoid the hard questions and waive the white flag in defeat.