Gov. Ned Lamont and the other marionettes for the New Big Tobacco, the marijuana industry, are galloping towards the legalization of high-potency marijuana for our children and adolescents through age 25. There is no debate on the wisdom of poisoning our children and adolescents, only talk of the money the state will earn.

When the coronavirus came to Connecticut, nobody had invited it, it just came. I do not fault any governor, president, mayor or first selectperson, for the manner in which they responded to the COVID-19 coronavirus. Some states like New York, Connecticut and Michigan opted for heavier restrictions on its citizenry and saw a commensurate drop in their economies, particularly for their lower income residents, compared to states like Florida, Texas and Utah, that were less restrictive to its citizens and businesses and saw a smaller decline in their economies.

But when Governor Lamont invites high-potency recreational marijuana into Connecticut, that is a voluntary act. The damage to the brains and physical well-being of our children and young adults will be squarely on the governor’s shoulders. We have heard much from our betters, those with advanced degrees, about the need to follow the data and science when dealing with the coronavirus. And of course there was the politically correct data and science and the politically disfavored data and science that was not allowed a seat at the table since it did not satisfy political objectives of our betters. With marijuana it matters not to Governor Lamont and the other marionettes for the New Big Tobacco that marijuana changes the size of a child’s and adolescent’s brain’s gray matter. There is also increased anxiety and paranoia. The suicide ideation by young women, addicted to marijuana, increases six-fold. Depression increases.

And all for a few dollars. How much is the health of our children and adolescents through age 25 worth, Governor? Last summer we worried about significant budget shortfalls from a weakened economy and then a bounty of capital-gains taxes came in at the end of the year from the wealthy that Governor Lamont is trying to keep in the state — the same wealthy that his progressive allies are trying to chase out of the state with endless tax and spend initiatives. There is no end to all the things that statists would like to spend your money on. The end-of-the-year tax windfall happened for a reason. Please do not sacrifice our children and adolescents at the altar of the state.

If you want us to believe that we are following science or data, then we should follow what pediatricians say. These are our children’s doctors. The American Academy of Pediatrics is dead set against recreational marijuana for our children and adolescents through age 21. The mission statement for the AAP is “to attain optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents and young adults.” Hmm, imagine that? What a laudable goal! Then imagine that after all of the exhortations from Governor Lamont that they are trying to protect the public health during the COVID-19 coronavirus, that it is  empty talk.

The governor and his fellow statists care not for the public health of our children and adolescents. Otherwise, why would they be galloping headlong to poison them with marijuana strains called “Girl Scout Cookie,” or entice them with gummies and brownies? What of the college students who drop out of college under the fog of marijuana after attending college in recreational marijuana states like Colorado, California and Vermont?

So the New Big Tobacco, ally and supporter of the governor, will seek to set up marijuana dispensaries in communities of color, while promising business opportunities, all the while that they try to get our children and grandchildren hooked on marijuana. Who in communities of color want their children or grandchildren hooked on marijuana? Nobody. The red-herring of decriminalization of pot is unrelated to enticing our children to hurt their health. Decriminalization and amendment of records can be handled separately. We do not need to sacrifice our children.

Don’t kid yourself that it is just a matter of making pot legal after age 25. Children watch what the adults do. As pot legalization spreads, more teens are smoking pot. A study in California recently confirmed that in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, dated February 15, 2021. But since that science counters the political imperative to reward the New Big Tobacco, an ally of the Democratic Party, we will ignore science, just as Connecticut Attorney General William Tong ignores the importation of pot grown in California and Oregon and illegally shipped here to get our kids high on their drug. He does nothing to stop it! He has not written one cease and desist letter to the Governors of California and Oregon to keep their pot within their borders as they only consume about one sixth to one seventh of what they grow. Where do you think the rest of their crop goes? All across America. Please Attorney General Tong, don’t pontificate on public health or working for our children. Your words are empty as you stand idly by while these pot exporters ply their trade. You were elected to enforce the laws of the State of Connecticut and not to selectively ignore marijuana. Please help.

For the record, marijuana is not a medicine. It cures nothing. It is only a pain and nausea reliever. The useful CBD oil that comes from the marijuana plants, is inversely proportionate to the potency of the pot. In other words, the high potency pot of today has a fraction of the CBD oils that your grandfather’s pot had.

Apparently, Governor Lamont is aware that if he imposes highway tolls, he would be a one-term governor. Poisoning our children and adolescents with pot, gummies and brownies should assure a one term governorship as well by sacrificing the health of our children at the altar of the state, which never has enough of the citizen’s money to spend.

So the proponents will cancel and ignore that children and adolescent doctors are dead set against recreational marijuana for our children and adolescents. This is science and data that you want to ignore. Thus let, all your future exhortations on mask wearing, public health and vaccinations fall on deaf ears as recreational marijuana is against our public health! Anxiety, paranoia, suicide ideation, depression, emergency room hospitalizations for youth ingesting edibles are all foreseeable results of recreational marijuana. The death and misery of Cover-19 did not ask to be invited into Connecticut. The anxiety, paranoia, suicide ideation, depression, addiction, emergency room visits, increased murder and worsened public health from marijuana has to be invited into our state. Don’t sacrifice our children and adolescents through age 25. Stand up to the statist promotion of state over citizen.

Peter Thalheim lives in Stamford.

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