What To Do About Marijuana: The Shafer Report
01:33:45 - 01:38:17
Chairman The Honorable Raymond Philip Shafer, Vice Chairman Dana L. Farnsworth, M.D., and Executive Director Michael R. Sonnenreich take phone calls from reporters.
Caller: Dr. Farnsworth, the commission report makes it clear that the use of marijuana is greatest among young people, although it adds the interesting fact that 75% of these young people are no longer in school, one gathers that most of the use of marijuana begins in the school years, and even in the early school years, if I remember correctly, you have not looked with approval on the use of marijuana particularly by young people. If you would tell us, what in the studies done by the commission have changed your mind about the seriousness of the use of marijuana by young people? Second how much initiative to you think schools should take in refusing to allow their students to smoke marijuana? Farnsworth says that his enthusiasm for marijuana has been limited all along. On the other hand the occasional use of marijuana does not do any physical harm and may not do any psychological harm, but on the other hand it does not help the individual. So Farnsworth s general opinion does not differ much from what it has been over the years. Mainly the decision of the commission is that the laws are unenforceable.
Caller: Would you say something about the fact that the commission is returning some of the responsibility to the institutions rather than expecting the law to carry it all. Farnsworth says that the schools and colleges need to have discussions about the true meaning of its use. The idea exists that some of the attraction to marijuana is the fact that it is illegal, by decriminalizing it, they should take away some of its attraction. Schaffer feels that schools do need to take the lead in helping young people to have all the fact, which will help their discouragement policy.