More than 20 doctors have sounded the alarm on Ireland’s march toward marijuana legalization, lamenting what they called a “one-sided discussion about cannabis.”
The group of doctors, calling themselves the “Cannabis Risk Alliance,” voiced their concerns in a letter published Monday in the Irish Times; the signatories include Dr. Ray Walley, the former president of the Irish Medical Organisation.
“We are extremely concerned about the increasing health-related problems caused by cannabis across Ireland,” they wrote, citing “growing scientific data that indicates that cannabis use in young people is related to impairments to memory and thinking, which can endure long after cannabis use has ceased.”
Moreover, they wrote that cannabis use, particularly among young people, “is associated with increased risk of development of severe mental disorders particularly psychosis.”
Such warnings represent an increasingly fringe sentiment these days, with public polling around the world showing growing acceptance of recreational pot use and rising opposition to laws criminalizing the drug. In both the United States and Europe, efforts to roll back marijuana prohibition have been gaining steam.
The members of the Cannabis Risk Alliance acknowledged that the discussion surrounding cannabis use was driven by two separate concerns — “the argument in favour of