If you think being 17 or younger is too soon for drugs, then these kids are alright.
The latest Monitoring the Future survey of drug use among high school-aged youths in America found that “use of ecstasy, heroin, synthetic marijuana, alcohol [and] cigarettes declined among U.S. teens in 2015,” according to a summary.
And, despite continued legalization across the United States, marijuana use “did not show any significant change in annual prevalence,” the summary of the report from the University of Michigan stated.
Twelve percent of eighth graders, one in four 10th graders, and 35 percent of 12th graders had tried cannabis in the last year, the study found.
One in 16 or so high school seniors tokes daily, the university said. Marijuana “remains a matter of concern,” said Professor Lloyd Johnson, the lead author of the study.
While pot’s level usage among teens would appear to support the argument that legalization isn’t encouraging kids to smoke weed with abandon, the anti-legalization group Smart Approaches to Marijuana begs to differ.
In an alarmist statement, Kevin A. Sabet, a former White House drug policy adviser who now serves now as president of SAM, said:
Why is marijuana use not dropping like the use of other substances? The answer is likely the dramatic rise in marijuana commercialization and industrialization. It may also be why daily marijuana use is at near-record levels. And this doesn’t even include teens not going to school.
Cue eye rolls.
Meanwhile alcohol use was at the lowest levels researchers have seen since the study began in the 1970s, the university said.
For grades 8, 10 and 12, the percentages of kids who tried synthetic marijuana — which really has nothing to do with the real thing, chemically speaking — was 3, 4 and 5, respectively, the report said.