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Sobering Focus of Marijuana Ballot Initiative

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October 6, 2016

Proposition 64, or the “Adult Use of Marijuana Act” isn’t getting as much television and radio air play as some of the other measures on the ballot, but it’s passage could be a much further reaching public health threat than is being portrayed.

Opponents of the measure have created accurate web-ads that focus on the dangers of impaired driving and exposing youth to advertising in favor of the drug, which a recent article in the Sacramento Bee found to be accurate. 

Since the recreational use of marijuana was legalized in Colorado, the Parkview Hospital emergency room in that state has seen a more than 50 percent increase in the number of children 18 and under that test positive for marijuana. Even more disturbing, nearly half of all newborns born in that hospital also tested positive. This is a small snapshot of what could transpire in California on a much grander scale, given the Golden State is the most populous state in the nation, and home to seven times the number of people that live in Colorado.

Proposition 64 does not pertain to the use of marijuana for medical purposes, but would allow people age 21 and older to grow six pot plants at home and possess up to one ounce for non-medical purposes. The passage of this proposition would also change the sentences for those prosecuted for marijuana-selling crimes from a maximum of four years to six months in jail. It would also eliminate the longtime television ban on smoking advertisements.

Fr. Gerald Coleman recently released his in-depth examination of the impact of marijuana legalization in his piece The Changing Attitudes About the Use of Marijuana, and the Conference has published a propositional analysis on the measure.

For more information visit the No on 64 campaign website at