New study undercuts law enforcement claims about medical marijuana

MarijuanaDispensary.jpg
The presence of dispensaries doesn't correlate with increased crime, including robberies, the study finds.
One of the main reasons Gov. Mark Dayton doesn't support medical marijuana is because law enforcement is opposed to it. For example, last fall, Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek wrote an op-ed arguing "there is a direct connection between marijuana and violent crime."

That argument strikes pot users as strange -- sure, ganja might foster aggression toward snack foods, but have you ever met a violent stoner?

A new study from researchers at the University of Texas at Dallas not only supports the intuition that pot doesn't make people violent, but goes a step further and suggests medical marijuana might actually lead to more law and order.

See also:
Barack Obama disagrees with Sheriff Stanek about the dangers of pot

The study, which looks at nationwide crime data from 1990 to 2006, finds the 11 states that legalized medical marijuana during that timeframe experienced no significant uptick in homicide, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, larceny, and auto theft. In fact, medical marijuana appears to be correlated with an overall reduction in violent crime.

"With one exception -- forcible rape -- states passing MML laws experienced reductions in crime and the rate of reduction appears to be steeper for states passing MML laws as compared to others for several crimes such as homicide, robbery, and aggravated assault," the authors write. "The raw number of homicides, robberies, and aggravated assaults also appear to be lower for states passing MML as compared to other states, especially from 1998-2006."

"These findings run counter to arguments suggesting the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes poses a danger to public health in terms of exposure to violent crime and property crimes," the authors conclude.

It's important to note, of course, that the findings don't prove medical marijuana is the reason for the decrease in crime. Instead, it might be more about the prevailing political environment in states that legalize medical marijuana than the effects of pot itself, the authors suggest.

"Perhaps the more likely explanation of the current findings is that MML laws reflect behaviors and attitudes that have been established in the local communities," the authors write. "If these attitudes and behaviors reflect a more tolerant approach to one another's personal rights, we are unlikely to expect an increase in crime and might even anticipate a slight reduction in personal crimes."

Whatever the explanation, the University of Texas at Dallas study is a lot more persuasive than the anecdotal and incomplete evidence used by Stanek to make his case.

h/t -- Washington Post

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.



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38 comments
articfeather
articfeather

Well I sure hope this research is shown to law enforcement in Minnesota so it will persuade them to get on board.

misterrosewater
misterrosewater

The active ingredient in marijuana, THC, has been available in prescription form since 1977.  It's called Marinol, and most any physician in Minnesota can prescribe it.  Instead of clamoring for legalization, maybe people should talk to their doctors first.

Gary
Gary

Yet another study showing no correlation between legalized marijuana and crime, yet I'm willing to bet a paycheck that Dayton will say something like "I need to see more studies." Why do I get the feeling that, if a study comes out saying "Marijuana leads to a zombie apocalypse," THAT will be the "study" Dayton gloms on to.

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

The only reason weed is illegal is because of old people and the ultra religious. When they die, and are the minority the tide will change. 

Joe Duggan
Joe Duggan

The only correlation of violent crime and marijuana is the fact that it's illegal. There is profit to be made from it by gangs/criminals/people, and money can always create violence.

Curt W. Schneider
Curt W. Schneider

Who gives a shit what the police think? They aren't exactly known for being smart or reasonable.

claygooding
claygooding

The violence surrounding the marijuana market is all done by two groups,,the criminals mostly fighting each other and the cops killing mostly users,,,the users are not violent.

The simplest way to remove the violence is to remove these two groups,,legalize and get both of them out of the pot market.

Jacob Mulholland
Jacob Mulholland

Excellent that this reduces violent crime! The same is shown true with the introduction of conceal carry laws and easier access to guns for law abiding citizens. -- maybe we have found two agents to less violent communities! Hurray!!

alexjarvis88
alexjarvis88

This is just a random humorous contradiction, but I think it is funny enough to share anyway...  Taking the perspective of anti-Illuminati conspiracy theorists for a moment, there is a belief that the higher powers have been out to control the masses since before Marijuana was made illegal.  There are even articles and YouTube videos attempting to document the words, intentions and progression of this belief.  


Given the goal of the Illuminati in this conspiracy theory, and the details of your point that a connection between marijuana use and violence seems strange, it looks a lot like the Illuminati must have missed clear opportunity to make us all more subservient and likely to accept their goals.  But on that note, they also missed the effect clearly illustrated by Brunei, that keeping citizens satisfied with adequate amounts of wealth leaves them happy with even a complete dictatorship.


The intent of this post is merely for the sake of the humor in the relationship between Marijuana and relaxed attitudes about life, so please don't take it personally that I don't give the Illuminati concept any credit for anything if you are one of those kinds of people.  Just enjoy the humor in the observation that the power hungry higher powers clearly missed an opportunity here.


On a different, but also related note...  As far as Dayton goes, I have tried several times to approach his office going as far as volunteering to collect relevant data and present it from a neutral position with no response from his office.  I think he is using law enforcement as a cop out because he doesn't want to make his friends mad at him.

Jonathan David
Jonathan David

So not true. In college, this guy I knew *violently* attacked a display of Little Debby snack cakes in a convenience store while stoned.

Adam Garlie
Adam Garlie

This isn't news and to the people who think it is please go F yourself and get out of the way of this!!!!

cyphasamurai
cyphasamurai

Cops need to shake down citizens and fund their over time pay. Why would they ever want to change the great deal they have going?

Stuart Allen
Stuart Allen

well of course law enforcement is against it buisness would be bad if everyone was mellowed out with the munchies and not committing severe crimes.

Kevin Green
Kevin Green

The violent crime(s) associated with this are usually committed by the police / Drug Warriors ! The Marijuana Death Squads are notorious for war crimes.

midwestexplorer81
midwestexplorer81 topcommenter

The only reason violence happens around marijuana is because of the black market money involved. Gang bangers and meth heads often rob marijuana dealers violently because they know the marijuana dealers have large amounts of money laying around. Stanek knows this is true himself, he's just upset his drug task force may see the day they can't kick in people's doors and commit violent acts themselves for marijuana money anymore. Ohhh the poor Sheriff, boo hoo.

bill
bill

@misterrosewater CBD, not THC, is the ingredient that causes cannabis to be effective as an anti-spasmodic.  There are many other compounds in cannabis similar to CBD, but we don't know their full range of effects because the DEA won't allow research to be done.  Regardless, we know CBD is a powerful substance with very few side effects that can effectively treat epilepsy, but the *only*, repeat, ONLY way to currently get CBD is from the whole plant.


Maybe if you did your research you would know this.  Sure, CBD could be synthesized in a lab somewhere and sold in pharmacies for an insane markup but that would mean the DEA would have to allow the research to be done.  What's more, why should a patient have to pay hundreds of dollars a month for access to a therapeutic agent that could be grown naturally for pennies on the dollar?

imgadgett
imgadgett

@k2yeb they are fast becoming the minority.  In fact 76% of minnesotans are in favor of legalizing marijuana for medical purposes, 56% favor full legalization.  The guy running for governor in the DFL against Dayton favors legalization.  The repoblicans..."maybe, but we have to look at a it for awhile" type of responses. They aren't willing to say yes so I certainly wouldn't vote for them in the next election come Nov.  I hear a movement going on here that Dayton will not be re-elected if he does not pass the HF 1818 bill already on the table this session.  I guess we'll see how badly he wants a second term. 

sosmpls
sosmpls

@k2yeb

Where did you get that idea? Did you ever hear of Vietnam? Yeah, it's "old people" who were forced to fight in that war, and many had to smoke weed just to get through it. And when they got back they still had the habit, so they know that smoking for 30 years, in many cases, has no adverse effects. Quit wishing them dead, PUNK!

digitaldeath
digitaldeath

@alexjarvis88  why are you mentioning the illuminati? undercuts any point you may have made...and i read your drivel and found nothing illuminating or even complete thoughts.


learn more, write better

sosmpls
sosmpls

@cyphasamurai

And, pot smokers rarely fight back or shoot at them. A nice, safe way to avoid dangerous 'real criminals.'

digitaldeath
digitaldeath

@sosmpls ya great, you mention the disenfranchised Nam vets. unfortunately nobody really listens to them and they have zero political clout. 


we are talking about older fucks and draft dodgers who have ascended to power. they need to go the fuck to sleep 


i mean those fucking idiots go to church and talk about god!

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

@alexjarvis88 @digitaldeath  There is no conspiracy when its done in front of your face. Also, the Illuminati are a fascination of the paranoid and disillusioned. 

alexjarvis88
alexjarvis88

@digitaldeath @alexjarvis88  Considering that you are still missing the important relevant information that causes the initial post to make sense, I would have to argue that the retard you are exposing is not me.  


And yes, you are trolling.  By wasting my time perpetuating a conversation that I don't want to have with you due to your disregard for some key information in the post, you are trolling.  By insulting me, you are trolling.  I have no desire to converse with you further, so save your ignorance for people who aren't capable of seeing through it.  Unless you really just missed the point.  If that's the case you really aren't qualified to be taking the position you are.  


Either way...go bother someone else.  I don't care to know you.


Cheers!

digitaldeath
digitaldeath

@alexjarvis88 what is your thesis? i missed important info about the illuminati? i am not trolling i am exposing retards like you...


"Taking the perspective of anti-Illuminati conspiracy theorists for a moment, there is a belief that the higher powers have been out to control the masses since before Marijuana was made illegal. "


wow much confusing ...makes no sense

alexjarvis88
alexjarvis88

@digitaldeath @alexjarvis88  Well actually my paragraphs do make sense...and you missed a whole lot of the important information there buddy.  Again, I will have to say that it is you who needs to learn more.


Keep trolling though, someone is bound to like you because of it.


Here's another thought for you...


Trolls:  Making stupid people stupider with every expressed whim.


Gotta go though, Nice talking to you.

digitaldeath
digitaldeath

@alexjarvis88 you say "anti-illuminati conspiracy theorists"  dont you mean illuminati conspiracy theorists???


again you're paragraphs have no focus, point, or logical conclusion. 



digitaldeath
digitaldeath

@alexjarvis88  LOL LOL  


"Taking the perspective of anti-Illuminati conspiracy theorists for a moment, there is a belief that the higher powers have been out to control the masses since before Marijuana was made illegal. "


this makes no sense...you have no education. 

if you're running around spouting garbage like this you may as well make sure it is logical and clear


again youve added NOTHING to the discussion

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