Tags: Marijuana | Steve Malzberg Show | Bill Bennett | THC | Jerry Brown

Bill Bennett: Weekly Joint Drops Teens' IQ by 8 Points

By    |   Friday, 06 February 2015 01:28 PM

The ongoing legalization of marijuana in the United States will help destroy the minds of young Americans, former Secretary of Education Bill Bennett said.

"As the science progresses, the evidence is overwhelming the harm that marijuana does," Bennett said on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

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"It hurts focus, it hurts concentration, it hurts memory. Start when you're a teenager, keep it going once a week, that's all, and you'll lose 8 IQ points.

"Do I need to say anything more than that? Who can afford to lose 8 IQ points? We also know what it does to your lungs … to your heart … to driving. There's a very strong case."

Bennett — who led the Office of National Drug Control Policy under President George H. W. Bush and hosts the syndicated radio show, "Bill Bennett's Morning in America" — is co-author with Robert White of "Going to Pot: Why the Rush to Legalize Marijuana is Harming America," published by Center Street.

He said he hopes the book will sway growing public opinion that marijuana is basically a harmless vice.

Bennett quoted one marijuana researcher at Northwestern University as saying: "If I could design a drug that would be the worst possible thing for students, it would be marijuana."

At present, the use of recreational and medicinal marijuana is legal in Colorado, Washington, Alaska and Oregon, as well as the Maine cities of Portland and South Portland.

Bennett said some of the slack given marijuana hinges on the nostalgia factor — as people think back to its use during the psychedelic '60s.

"There are people who used marijuana in the '60s and they're remembering that it was soft, it was easy," he said.

"THC, the intoxicating ingredient in the marijuana, is three to five times more powerful today than it was in the '60s. The content then was 3 percent; now it's 12 to 15 to 20 percent."

Whether the use of marijuana can be reversed now that the cat is out of the bag will be a challenge, but its possible, Bennett told Steve Malzberg.

"We tend to pull it out in the nick of time, but sometimes when we pull it out in the nick of time it's at great cost," he said.

"You read through the news, you read about what's happening, you listen to what the president says. A lot of people are pretty unhappy, a lot of my listeners are very unhappy.

"One understands the temptation to withdraw, to step away, to get out of this. Let's get stupid, let's just forget it."

But Bennett insisted that's not the way to a free society.

"The founders didn't think we were supposed to get through our lives and run our country by being buzzed," he said.

"Even [California Gov.] Jerry Brown — it's rare that I quote Jerry Brown — said we've got serious problems in the state of California. I don’t think we can get to them and address them if a third of our people are buzzed half the time."

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The ongoing legalization of marijuana in the United States will help destroy the minds of young Americans, former secretary of education Bill Bennett said.
Bill Bennett, THC, Jerry Brown
Friday, 06 February 2015 01:28 PM
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