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Ending weed prohibition hasn’t stopped drug crimes

12/7/18--A study recently published in The Economic Journal found that after medical marijuana was legalized in California, violent crime fell 15 percent. Yet, authorities in California’s Emerald Triangle, say that ever since California’s 1996 medical-marijuana initiative, violent crime in Humboldt, in particular, has increased. According to Ben Filippini, a deputy sheriff in this jurisdiction, "All legalization did here was create a safe haven for criminals.” Read

A tiny Texas town takes a chance on medical marijuana

1/10/18--Last September, a farm near Schulenburg, Texas, a quiet, conservative town of fewer than 3,000 people, became a medical-marijuana dispensary. Knox Medical, based in Florida, owns the farm and is one of the three newly licensed cannabis outfits in Texas to start selling cannabidiol, or CBD, a substance derived from low-THC marijuana. Read

Laid-back Hawaii’s strict approach to marijuana

11/3/17--After 16 years, medical cannabis patients in the state can finally buy pot from dispensaries. But there’s a lot of fine print. The litany of restrictions might seem odd for a state that’s solidly Democratic and is known—or at least stereotyped—as being easygoing and fun. As more and more states legalize marijuana, Hawaii’s cautious attitude shows just how much the definitions of “legal” can vary. Read

The surprising effect of marijuana legalization on college students

6/16/17--A new study in the journal Addiction finds that, after legalization, the use of marijuana among students at an Oregon college increased relative to that of students in states where the drug is still illegal. But, the rise was mainly seen among those students who had also reported drinking heavily recently. The Oregon students who binge drank were 73 percent more likely to also report using marijuana, compared to binge-drinking students in states that didn’t legalize marijuana. Read

How Iceland got teens to say no to drugs

1/19/17--Curfews, sports, and understanding kids’ brain chemistry have all helped dramatically curb substance abuse in the country. Today, Iceland tops the European table for the cleanest-living teens. The way the country has achieved this turnaround has been both radical and evidence-based, but it has relied a lot on what might be termed enforced common sense. Read