To the Editor:
Illinois will soon be considering legalization of recreational marijuana in a 500-plus page bill SB 7. Illinois is looking at this as a revenue source to fix the ills of a failed government for decades to responsibly manage Illinois’ fiduciary responsibilities, spending controls and growing entitlements to include sanctuary city and state status.
Ten states have passed recreational marijuana bills and more have utilized the medical marijuana approval. Although I can understand the medical benefits being useful for some, the recreational use will create many more problems. With many of the drug cartels controlling the human and drug trafficking in the U.S. they will certainly be a part of the recreational market as well. Colorado being one of the first to approve recreational use is now considering approval of the use of psychedelic mushroom use expanding yet another illicit drug.
Who will profit from this? Historically, in Illinois the insiders embed themselves in the companies that will produce the markets for these products and reap many of the profits from this new enterprise. Look at the licenses that were already issued for medicinal growers in Illinois. The public will also get something out of this let me list a few. There will be more traffic fatalities and injuries from accidents. SB 7 allows “home growing”, something that will not be able to be regulated even with a growth plant limit. Law enforcement cannot take on this burden. They would not be able to control the level of THC in home grow operations likely to involve the black market as well. Law enforcement currently cannot reliably test the level of THC in marijuana and what is the level at which impairment can be proven. This will also make marijuana more accessible to minors in the home and in the schools. This will likely lead to more medical visits to local hospitals and the impact on spending among those purchasing marijuana for use or becoming dealers themselves. One final point is the impact on those in many occupations that are currently tested for marijuana due to impairment on the job in critical occupations being a danger to themselves and others in control of chemical plants or other manufacturing facilities, public transportation etcetera.
Although many may disagree, it is a fact that most illicit drug use begins with marijuana, paint, or glue and may lead to expansion to other hard drugs for an increased high. Most addicts will admit they started with marijuana. Please reflect on this and contact your local and state politicians to reject this as the fix for Illinois financial woes. The price families and society will pay for this is much larger than any financial assistance benefit to the state. Urge legislators to vote NO — this will not improve our society, our families or stop the flight from Illinois.