In response to the article “State could face differing pot questions in ’16” (Nov. 23), it’s not only about a “Battle of the Bongs.”

Clear-headed voters will have a third choice on legalizing recreational marijuana — an option to not make it legal. This choice clears the air to the clouds of marijuana misinformation. The option to not legalize recreational marijuana will keep public health costs down, and Mainers interested in maintaining safe and successful youth, this option increases the probability of success. This voting option ensures the future that, well, will have a future.

A quiet majority of voters exists, those who decide it is in their best interest to not use marijuana — despite an illusion of a “rapidly swinging social pendulum” in legalizing the substance. This quiet majority has the basic knowledge that marijuana use slows response rate, has a dulling effect and deters real-time decision-making ability. This majority of people doesn’t use marijuana and don’t want to see it become legal.

Informed voters know that approving of something that inevitably will go up in smoke isn’t in the best interest of youth or the economy. Voters should be aware of their right to choose the third voting option — to not legalize.

National or local, the smart approach is to keep a costly and harmful drug out of accessibility of every corner store, and keep youth and adults on track with their goals, sports, arts and achievements that lead to real success. Relief can be found to Mainers who know that the “disagree” option for recreational marijuana legalization in 2016 is a third voting option. A smart approach that considers the future.

Raya Kouletsis

State coordinator, Maine Alliance to Prevent Substance Abuse


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