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Theodore A. Hoppe

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What is the evidence regarding driving under the influence of marijuana? How much enforcement is needed to deal with this "problem?"

Two state have legalize the recreational use of marijuana and many more have permitted the use of medical marijuana. Law enforcement has countered this move by stepping up enforcement of "driving high." Police in many states have begun asking legislators to empower them to test drivers who they believe may be under the influence of marijuana.

"Even with laws establishing a specific limit, police might not have a way to enforce them."

http://www.npr.org/2014/02/23/280310526/with-support-for-marijuana-concern-over-driving-high-grows?ft=3&f=2

How much enforcement is needed? What is the evidence regarding driving under the influence of marijuana?

“We’ve done phone surveys, and we’re hearing that a lot of people think D.U.I. laws don’t apply to marijuana,” said Glenn Davis, highway safety manager at the Department of Transportation in Colorado"

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/18/health/driving-under-the-influence-of-marijuana.html?_r=0

NORML offers this perceptive:“Crash culpability studies have failed to demonstrate that drivers with cannabinoids in the blood are significantly more likely than drug-free drivers to be culpable in road crashes.”
http://norml.org/library/item/marijuana-and-driving-a-review-of-the-scientific-evidence

How "stoned" is to high to drive?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/18/stoned-drivers-test-course-marijuana-dui_n_2711358.html

What are your thoughts?

Topics: DUI marijuana
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  • thumb
    Feb 28 2014: The Center for Disease Control sights a statistic which says that there are 112 million instance of driving while over the influence (DWI) each year. We also know the there are reports that there over 11, 000 deaths that are attributed to accidents "where alcohol was involve." 1.5 million people were arrested last year for DWI.

    In contrast, there are this article from The Atlantic that I read a few years ago that prompted me to write an essay. In part it reads..

    "David Goldhill wrote, "My dad became a statistic—merely one of the roughly 100,000 Americans whose deaths are caused or influenced by infections picked up in hospitals. One hundred thousand deaths: more than double the number of people killed in car crashes, five times the number killed in homicides, 20 times the total number of our armed forces killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Another victim in a building American tragedy. He wrote this in 2009. Why do we not hear more about this since then?
    In 2008, there were 37,261 traffic accidents with 11,773 fatalities, but organizations like Mother Against Drunk-driving are will throw $26 million annually, to fight for harsher sentencing laws and stricter enforcement. This stricter enforcement resulted in the arrest of almost 1.5 million people in the U.S. in 2008.
    The deaths that occur thorough the spread of infection in hospitals do not result in any arrests but may be just as criminal since they are preventable but there is no enforcement, and no organizations with big budgets to lobby for legislation. In fact, there is just the opposite.
    The question becomes: "Why do we pay hospitals for treating people they make sick? Where is the incentive for them to change practices if we do?"

    http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2009/09/how-american-health-care-killed-my-father/7617/


    This is NOT to say that impaired driving, in any form, is to be deemed acceptable behavior.
    What I am arguing here is whether it warrants the "aggressive policing."

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