Lance Scranton: The real question surrounding pot |

Lance Scranton: The real question surrounding pot

Lance Scranton

Our local paper has been writing about, and the community has been looking for the “one answer” to the economic issues that seem to be pestering our town. Most of the answers revolve around diversification of some sort due to the constant attacks on our natural resource industries. “Pot” is the latest entry into the list of potential industries that promise to help save Craig and Moffat County from struggling to meet various budgetary concerns.

Depending on which side of the marijuana issue you would like to argue, there are plenty of studies to help you make your case. Like alcohol, pot has some redeeming qualities if we keep things in a very defined context. But, regardless of your stance, our personal experiences and preferences help shape our view on this issue.

I don’t even think that drug and alcohol consumption are necessarily a right or wrong issue that can be argued to any definitive conclusion. I’m fairly libertarian on many issues and generally disagree with government interfering with the citizenry to tell us what we should think and how we should act. However, if responsibility were as passionately advocated as rights in our current debates, it would be easier to support unfettered personal choice and freedom.

I’ve seen the disastrous effects of alcohol in the life of my friends as I was growing up and in the community in which I live in today. And, I’ve seen what pot can do as well in the lives of people that I care about and how it has snuffed out the dreams and desires of many others. I teach in a school where the use of pot is a reality, and I have witnessed young people devolving into something far different than what was their promising future. But these are circumstances that involve abuse and is a very different argument than the responsible use of both pot and alcohol.

The real question isn’t what’s right and wrong nor what it is that we have a right (and a responsibility) to pursue in a free nation. The question is what do we value collectively as a community and how does the pot question fit within those values that we believe are truly important in our community? My responsibility is to help support our community as we determine our next steps. I remember a report called Moffat 2035; I still have it and read through it periodically. It is good to see that we are implementing an economic development plan which was a flagship project in the report. I think that I have a few answers, and I know others in our community do as well. I’m looking forward to hearing from Doug Griffiths later this month and have already previewed his talking points at: which you should check out for yourself.

Lance Scranton is a teacher and a coach at Moffat County High School.
Lance Scranton is a teacher and a coach at Moffat County High School.

Lance Scranton is a teacher and a coach at Moffat County High School.

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