Grow, Gift, Repair

Nice article on the data coming out the state

The Massachusetts data may also offer some guidance in terms of public health policy, specifically in terms of identifying the types and likelihood of problematic behaviors, such as operating under the influence, and what kinds of education programs may be necessary to help combat them.

It will also be interesting to see if overall drug usage numbers rise, as many who fought the recreational usage initiative claimed would happen. In Colorado, officials discovered that legalization actually had the opposite effect. A study published by the state this past December indicated that marijuana usage among teenagers had fallen to its lowest level in nearly a decade. The same study also discovered that contrary to the argument that marijuana often serves as a gateway drug, teen usage of alcohol, tobacco and even heroin had also dropped significantly just three years after it was legalized in Colorado.

Obviously, Massachusetts is not Colorado. Nor is it Oregon, Vermont, or any of the other states that have legalized recreational usage. Our demographics, history, and other variables will undoubtedly have an impact on how we handle this newfound freedom. Hopefully, however, the DPH numbers will be the first step in allowing us to separate the hype and the hyperbole from the reality of marijuana usage.