I’ve got some good news and some bad news when it comes to American teenagers and drug use.
Here’s the good news: according to a national survey of more than 40,000 high school kids, teens are increasingly turning away from synthetic marijuana, such as K2 and Spice.
Here’s the bad news: the use of real marijuana has jumped after a decade of gradual decline.
About one out of four high school seniors reported smoking the drug in the month before the survey, with one out of three saying they used pot in the past year.
Most experts see the shift as coming from a growing perception that marijuana simply isn’t harmful.
Only 40% of those high schoolers see pot smoking as risky,
Gil Kerlikowske, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, says kids are getting the wrong message from the medical marijuana and legalization campaigns.
He says if pot “is continued to be talked about as a benign substance that has no ill effects, we’re doing a great disservice to our young people.”
And what does Lady Gaga have to say about using pot? In a recent interview, the pop star admitted she was heavily addicted to marijuana.
She says, “I have been addicted to it, and it’s ultimately related to anxiety coping. It’s a form of self-medication. I was living on a totally other psychedelic plane, numbing myself completely.”
Gaga says, “I want young kids to know that you actually can become addicted to it. There’s this sentiment that you can’t, and that’s actually not true.”
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Listen to today’s audio here.