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Toolbox Update: DPA’s ‘Safety First’ Teen Drug Use Brochure


drug policy alliance dea debate aspen ideas festivalIn the new series ‘Toolbox Update’ I’ll be posting tools available online for activists who may be facing tough conversations with police, authorities or their family members.

In 2014 the Drug Policy Alliance issued a paper titled, “Safety First: A Reality-Based Approach to Teens and Drugs”

The author is Marsha Rosenbaum, PhD. In the booklet (downloadable as a .pdf) Dr. Rosenbaum covers a variety of topics, including:

• Is it true that marijuana is significantly more potent and dangerous today than in the past?

• Is today’s marijuana really more addictive than ever before?

• Does marijuana really cause people to seek out “harder” drugs?

• Is it true that smoking marijuana causes lung cancer?

• What about the impact of marijuana on the adolescent brain?

• How will legalization of marijuana affect teens?

Dr. Rosenbaum reports that the highest teen use of marijuana occurs from 3-6pm, when students are out of school and unsupervised.

DPA SafetyFirst

You can find the entire document at the above address. It is worth the read.

DPA has reprints available for those who wish to purchase in bulk for distribution to community groups or parent organizations.

To obtain additional copies of Safety First: A Reality-Based Approach to Teens and Drugs please contact:

Drug Policy Alliance




Source: The Compassion Chronicles


About Author

"Rick Thompson was the Editor in Chief for the entire 2-year run of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Magazine, was the spokesman for the Michigan Association of Compassion Centers and is the current Editor and Lead Blogger for The Compassion Chronicles. Rick has addressed committees in both the House and Senate, has authored over 200 articles on marijuana and is a professional photographer." Rick Thompson Is An Author At The Compassion Chronicles and focuses on all things Michigan.


  1. saynotohypocrisy on

    That is a powerful quote from Carl Sagan. As he remains one of the most accomplished cannabis users that we know of, I’m very pleased to learn that not only did he use cannabis well, he was able to eloquently explain why cannabis use is a positive force for good, not a problem that has to be suppressed, or grudgingly tolerated only because it can’t be suppressed at acceptable cost.

  2. David Yoseph Schreiber on

    Drug Policy Alliance paper asserts, “Marijuana does not often lead to physical dependence or overdose, but it does alter the way people think, behave and react.”

    So does education and experience.

    It is important to seize the moral high ground on this issue. It is true that psychedelics are not for everybody. However the few that use them, especially when used properly, often benefit from them immensely. In addition the benefit radiates to the entire society. It is reasonable for people to fear the heights of insight. However people who wish to explore depths of the human soul and the secrets of metaphysics should not be suppressed and persecuted. In addition it is no crime for a person to ingest a substance for no other reason than it makes them feel good. The fact that cannabis is pleasing to the brain and body is not greatly different from sugar and oil being pleasing to the palate.

    Here are some useful quotes:

    “The illegality of cannabis is outrageous, an impediment to full utilization of a drug which helps produce the serenity and insight, sensitivity and fellowship so desperately needed in this increasingly mad and dangerous world.”―Carl Sagan

    “A psychedelic experience is a journey to new realms of consciousness. The scope and content of the experience is limitless, but its characteristic features are the transcendence of verbal concepts, of spacetime dimensions, and of the ego or identity. Such experiences of enlarged consciousness can occur in a variety of ways: sensory deprivation, yoga exercises, disciplined meditation, religious or aesthetic ecstasies, or spontaneously. Most recently they have become available to anyone through the ingestion of psychedelic drugs such as LSD, psilocybin, mescaline, DMT, etc. Of course, the drug does not produce the transcendent experience. It merely acts as a chemical key — it opens the mind, frees the nervous system of its ordinary patterns and structures.” The Psychedelic Experience: A Manual Based on The Tibetan Book of the Dead by Ralph Metzner, Ram Dass, and Timothy Leary

    While testifying before Congress in 1966, Harvard professor of Psychology, Dr. Timothy Leary was asked if LSD usage was “extremely dangerous,” He replied, “Sir, the motor car is dangerous if used improperly… Human stupidity and ignorance is the only danger human beings face in this world.” Leary’s testimony urged for some type of licensing that would require LSD users to be highly trained, much like a pilot’s license, so that responsible adults could use LSD “for serious purposes, such as spiritual growth, pursuit of knowledge, or their own personal development.” He also noted that without such licensing, Americans faced “another era of prohibition” that would create a new group of college-educated white-collar criminals.

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