Paid political letter: Why You Should Vote NO on Legalizing Marijuana

Ideas and opinions in this letter are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the stance of this paper. The author of this letter has paid for its placement. As a former law enforcement officer, I feel it is my duty to explain why legalizing marijuana is a terrible idea and why I’m asking you to vote NO on Measure 2.

Many of us believe that legalizing marijuana in North Dakota will be bad for our people, communities, and minds and bodies of North Dakotans, especially our young and impressionable kids.

In my opinion, those in favor of legalizing marijuana are painting a false picture of safety and a lack of problems associated with legalization. If they were being honest, they would bring up all the distressing statistics from those states already allowing legalized marijuana.

First, the idea that minors under 21 won’t get their hands on legal marijuana is ludicrous. Just like cigarettes, kids will get it without much trouble. And we all know what happens then; the statistics show that younger people are using and abusing legal marijuana at staggering numbers in the states where it’s legal.

In law enforcement, we get the reports. We’ve seen the statistics for several years. There are significant problems caused by marijuana use. The marijuana of today is much, much stronger than in the past. There is documentation about how emergency rooms are seeing many suffering from marijuana poisoning, paranoia and serious mental disorders. In one study, an analysis of survey data from more than 280,000 young adults ages 18-35 showed that marijuana use was associated with increased risks of thoughts of suicide, suicide plan, and suicide attempts. The measure sponsors want us to think it will be safe and regulated. Hogwash, don’t let them fool you!

We need to keep legalized marijuana out of our state. We need to do anything and everything possible to keep our young people safe. Don’t believe legalization is inevitable. WE have the control to say NO to Measure 2. Please vote NO on Measure 2.
Dan Donlin
Bismarck Chief of Police - Retired
Bismarck, N.D.