Saturday, June 4, 2022

Blame Legalized Marijuana for Increased Mass Shootings

Blame Legalized Marijuana for Increased Mass Shootings

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Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., then- Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vt., and then-former Vice President Joe Biden, at the the Democratic Presidential Debate at Otterbein University - Oct. 15, 2019 in Westerville, Ohio. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Ronald KesslerBy Wednesday, 01 June 2022 11:06 AMCurrent | Bio | Archive

President Biden and Democrats favor stricter gun controls when virtually none of the Democrats’ proposals would have stopped any of the mass shooters who have plagued this country in recent years.

Instead, virtually everyone ignores the obvious reason for the dramatic increase in these tragedies: Democrats push legalizing marijuana, which has become three to four times more potent than it was only a few years ago, and according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse leads to psychosis at a rate five times greater than among those who do not smoke pot  not to mention a reported link between marijuana use and schizophrenia, paranoia, and other psychotic disorders.

The potency of weed depends on the amount of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main compound responsible for the drug’s psychoactive effects.

One study of pot products seized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) found the potency increased from about 4% THC in 1995 to about 12% in 2014.

Another study showed the potency of illicit drug samples has gone up to 17% THC.

Newer products called marijuana concentrates can have levels of THC as high as 85% to 90%. By comparison, researchers say, the marijuana level in a typical joint 20 years ago was closer to 5%.

It often takes a while for marijuana use by mass shooters to come out, either through autopsies that may or may not detect it or from random news reports based on media interviews with friends and family members of mass shooters. Most autopsies do not include screening for the presence of cannabis, which decomposes rapidly.

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But marijuana use has been linked to more and more mass shooters, including the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter who killed 17 people; the Aurora movie theater shooter, who killed 12; the Umpqua Community College shooter, who killed nine; the Texas church shooter, who killed 26 people; and the Pulse nightclub shooter, who killed 49 people.

A 2020 U.S. Secret Service study of mass attacks found that nearly half of the perpetrators had a history of substance abuse, including with marijuana and illicit drugs.

Among teenagers, marijuana is more popular than daily cigarette smoking, according to the National Institute of Health’s 2017 "Monitoring the Future" study.

Pushed by Democrats, 18 states plus D.C. have legalized recreational use of marijuana.

Almost universally, Democratic presidential candidates have favored legalizing marijuana at the federal level. Indeed, as Politico has said, "Legalizing pot is the new Democratic litmus test."

"Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has boasted that his state, one of the first to legalize recreational marijuana use in 2012, has 'the best weed in the United States of America.'"

Politico noted, "Sen. Bernie Sanders has been proposing some form of legalization for more than two decades . . . Kamala Harris has reminisced about lighting up in college. And Sen. Cory Booker makes overhauling drug laws a linchpin of his stump speeches."

Few in the media have chosen to spotlight the link between marijuana use and mass shootings. An exception is Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, who recently interviewed Dr. Russell Kamer, the medical director of Partners in Safety, a group that works with companies to provide drug tests for its employees.

"My colleagues in Colorado," Kamer said on the show "are sounding the alarm because that was one of the first states to legalize. It’s practically a daily occurrence that kids come into the emergency rooms in florid, cannabis-induced psychosis."

Democrats who push stricter gun control measures as a solution to mass shootings are "completely oblivious to what the legalization of marijuana has done and is doing to an entire generation of Americans — with violent consequences," Ingraham said.

And National Public Radio (NPR) quoted Nora Volkow, director of NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, as saying, "In general, people think, 'Oh, I don’t have to worry about marijuana. It’s a safe drug.'"

However, "The notion that it is completely safe drug is incorrect when you start to address the consequences of this very high content of THC," Volkow told NPR.

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