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Talking to young people about a sort-of legal illegal thing

It’s legal with a recommendation from a doctor, but only in certain amounts and each city and county has its own rules. Without the recommendation it’s illegal, though it’s just an infraction, whereas selling… and on goes the winding logic behind California’s laws governing marijuana use.

The layers of laws, which also vary by city and county, make it totally clear to young people where the older world stands on pot. Or not.

Parenting blog The Stir has some reverse-psychology advice for parents on how not to broach the subject. They also offered a few stats from the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, which found in a survey that in 2009 7.3% of young people ages 12 to 17 had tried marijuana and 14.7% had tried alcoholic drinks.

The most interesting tidbit to me looked at the idea that marijuana will lead a person to try harder drugs. Here are some thoughts on that from around the web…

RAND Corporation researchers found that the gateway theory is possible but unlikely the whole story.

A  TIME magazine writer draws this analogy: Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang members are probably more 104 times more likely to have ridden a bicycle as a kid than those who don’t become Hell’s Angels, but that doesn’t mean that riding a two-wheeler is a “gateway” to joining a motorcycle gang.”

Wikipedia lists a bunch of studies proving and refuting the gateway concept.