Prohibitionists like to take any bit of ammo they have left and run with it – and the most sensitive topic for many is accidental consumption by children. The internet has been going crazy over a study that shows a spike in cannabis related emergency room visits and calls to poison control in Colorado since legalization took place a couple years ago. Of course, there is more to the story than just that.
While there has been an increase in the number of ER visits and calls to poison control, the increase really isn’t as big as they make it seem when you take into consideration just how many people – and parents – smoke marijuana on a regular basis. As more cannabis products came onto the market, the chances of a child accidentally consuming it definitely went up – and that is honestly to be expected to some degree; as long as the number of these issues stays relatively low it shouldn’t be so much of a worry.
In actuality, only 2.3 of every 1,000 calls to poison control for children under 10 years old were cannabis related. A writer for the Washington Post decided to take a look at a federal survey to help put things into perspective by comparing the number of cannabis related calls to poison control to those of alcohol and tobacco – the two substances marijuana is most commonly compared to.
As it turns out, alcohol and marijuana related calls sit at exactly the same rate – which, for children under the age of 5, is only 9 out of every 1 million users. Surprisingly, the number of calls by concerned parents whose children got ahold of tobacco reached 134. No one is calling to relive the alcohol prohibition era and there’s no way Big Tobacco will be outlawed – so why are people still pushing so hard to have cannabis be illegal?
I was even more interested to find out that common household items – things such as toothpaste, diaper cream, laundry detergent and even crayons have far more calls to poison control. Crayons themselves saw at least 1,683 calls per 1 million users – significantly higher than marijuana, alcohol or tobacco – and most of them are even labeled non-toxic! It’s time for prohibitionists to face the facts – children aren’t exposed to cannabis any more than they are alcohol or cigarettes, and even crayons are perceived to be more dangerous when you look at this data.