With news that I am sure is irritating to anti-reformers—what, with their habitual use of terrible substantiation and warping of facts—the University of Michigan released the results of its annual survey on teen drug use, Monitoring the Future (MTF). In it you will find that teen drug use on the whole is down. Great job, kids!
This annual survey is actually part of study that was initiated way back in 1975, polling more than 40,000 students each year from 8th, 10th, and 12th grades at over 400 public and private schools. Since its beginning, alcohol and cigarette use have never been lower than in the past year—especially dangerous drugs like MDMA, heroin, amphetamine, and synthetics, which have all dropped.
Interestingly, marijuana use has been more or less flat in the past five years. The number of near/daily pot smokers for 8th, 10th, and 12th graders is one percent, three percent, and six percent, respectively. While this frequency concerns some, I know a hell of a lot more than one out of fifteen people in my graduating high school class were smoking weed, and most are exceptionally "successful" people.
Thinking about this flat trend in teen marijuana use as it correlates with other facts is also something to ponder. In the last decade, students have a declining sense of great risk associated with marijuana use. Professor Lloyd Johnston notes that "perceived risk is usually a deterrent to use, and it is clear that this deterrent has weakened considerably."
While risk is a barrier to use, rates have not increased even though widespread legalization has normalized weed—a fact anti-reformers would like you to forget, and then remember when they claim normalization is a threat to you and yours.