Thursday, 25 April 2024

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin Vetoes Bill for Recreational Cannabis

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin Vetoes Bill for Recreational Cannabis
RICHMOND, VA - JANUARY 10: Gov. Glenn Youngkin gives his State of the Commonwealth addressMinh Connors for The Washington Post via Getty Images

Republican Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin vetoed a bill on Thursday that would have legalized the sale of recreational cannabis.

In his veto statement, the governor said the law that would have allowed for a state-regulated marketplace for recreational cannabis “endangers Virginians’ health and safety,” torpedoing the idea that the law would eliminate black markets.

“States following this path have seen adverse effects on children’s and adolescent’s health and safety, increased gang activity and violent crime, significant deterioration in mental health, decreased road safety, and significant costs associated with retail marijuana that far exceed tax revenue,” he said.

The Associated Press

Marijuana plants are close to harvest in a grow room at the Greenleaf Medical Cannabis facility in Richmond, VA, on June 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

According to the Hill, the legislation passed the state legislatures last month and would “have allowed the state to begin accepting applications on Sept. 1 for cultivation, testing and selling marijuana for the market to open on May 1, 2025.”

“The law came nearly three years after Virginia became the first Southern state to legalize marijuana through a policy change that permitted adults 21 and older to possess and cultivate the drug,” it noted.

Youngkin told reporters in January of his hopes that lawmakers will focus on issues that better the state of Virginia.

“I want us to work on areas where we can find a meeting of the mind and press forward to the betterment of Virginia, and there are so many of them,” he said.

As Breitbart News reported last year, a study shows that marijuana use has reached record levels for young adults and may soon become a practice among the majority. According to a Monitoring the Future study by scientists at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research, marijuana and hallucinogen use steadily climbed among young adults between 19 and 30 compared to just ten years ago:

Past-year, past-month and daily marijuana use (use on 20 or more occasions in the past 30 days) reached the highest levels ever recorded since these trends were first monitored in 1988. Marijuana use in the past month was reported by 29% of young adults in 2021, compared to 21% five years ago (2016) and 17% 10 years ago (2011). Daily marijuana use also significantly increased during these time periods, reported by 11% of young adults in 2021, a significant increase from 8% in 2016 and 6% in 2011.

Past-year hallucinogen use had been relatively stable over the past few decades until 2020, when reports of use started to increase dramatically. In 2021, 8% of young adults reported past-year hallucinogen use, representing an all-time high since the category was first surveyed in 1988. By comparison, in 2016, 5% of young adults reported past-year hallucinogen use, and in 2011, only 3% reported use.

Alcohol still remains the popular substance of choice among young adults, while binge drinking and high-intensity drinking has seen an uptick since the pandemic.

The study came months after a U.K. study published in the journal Lancet Psychiatry showed people who use cannabis with a THC potency above five to ten milligrams per gram have a higher risk of addiction and mental health problems. Study co-author Tom Freeman, director of the addiction and mental health group at the U.K.’s University of Bath, told CNN in an email at the time that high-potency cannabis users have a “four-fold increased risk of addiction” over low potency cannabis users.

Roughly three in ten people in the United States have been diagnosed with marijuana addiction, according to statistics from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Likewise, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction found a 76 percent increase in treatment for marijuana addiction over the past decade.

Paul Roland Bois directed the award-winning Christian tech thrillerEXEMPLUM, which can be viewed for FREE on YouTube or Tubi. “Better than Killers of the Flower Moon,” wrote Mark Judge. “You haven’t seen a story like this before,” wrote Christian Toto. A high-quality, ad-free rental can also be streamed on Google PlayVimeo on Demand, or YouTube Movies. Follow on X @prolandfilms or Instagram @prolandfilms.

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