I have regularly ranted here about the Drug Czar’s favorite lie — that the increased high percentage of people in treatment for marijuana is proof of the danger of the drug and its dependency potential. Check out this Walters interview on C-Span, for example, where he says:
Today, of the 7 million people we have to treat for drug abuse, 60% are dependent on marijuana, and yet people, baby boomers on down, somehow believe that marijuana doesn’t produce the same kind of dependency… It’s the single largest cause of treatment need in the country by a factor of 2. The second most significant cause is cocaine…The fact is, we know why this is happening. Marijuana potency, the THC the psychoactive ingredient has gone from 1% in 1980 to an average of 7% nationally, and we now have varieties that go up to 20-30%…
I debunked his statement fairly thoroughly then, but check out this new report by way of the Drug Policy Alliance::
Countering bogus claims by White House Drug Czar John Walters that hundreds of thousands of marijuana addicts are flocking to drug treatment, a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reportæshows that 82.5% of people seeking treatment for marijuana – a stunning majority – are doing so only because of government coercion. The report shows that many of those in treatment for marijuana do not enter because of problems with the drug but because they are first-time offenders arrested for marijuana possession who have been given the option by a judge or drug court to choose drug treatment or jail.
82.5%. Not only is this an indictment of the Drug Czar’s lies, but it’s proof that we are wasting treatment slots on marijuana users who don’t need treatment.