Home / Opinion / Commentary / Please vote no on Prop. 205: The evidence is everywhere

Please vote no on Prop. 205: The evidence is everywhere


As state legislators, public safety is one of our highest priorities. An initiative legalizing marijuana for recreational use is on the November ballot – Proposition 205. If approved by voters, this would be a dangerous and costly disaster for our state and we are making this public statement to let you know why.

It’s a bad idea made worse by evidence of what has happened in another state that has also gone down this path. Teen marijuana use in Colorado is now #1 in the nation. It is the substance for which 80% of teens seek addiction treatment. Marijuana-related hospitalizations are soaring. And legalization hasn’t made the marijuana market safer in Colorado; crime and drug cartel activity is up since legalization.

Supporters of this measure thought it would be a good idea not to address the issue of driving while under the influence of marijuana. No rational person would suggest putting no limits on alcohol and driving, but that is what the pro-marijuana forces want to do in our state with pot. Marijuana-related traffic fatalities have doubled in Colorado so it’s no surprise law enforcement has come out strongly against Prop. 205.

Colorado’s law provided deference to local communities, two-thirds of which banned ‘marijuana grows’ in their cities. In Arizona, Prop. 205 allows no such local control – not to cities, not to property owners, not to HOAs. Plus, due to our Voter Protection Law, Arizona would be locked into this awful experiment forever. To this point, Colorado legislators have proposed 80 bills “fixing” their law, among them setting limits on THC potency – the psychoactive ingredient in weed – and “edibles” packaging. Potent edibles such as cookies, Gummy Bears and other candy look-a-likes now make up 45 percent of all marijuana sold in Colorado. Arizona would have no such opportunity to protect the public, especially children.

The Prop. 205 crowd thought they could sell their bad idea by funneling some of the anticipated tax revenues to education. The Joint Legislative Budget Committee estimates $30 million in new funds from Prop 205 – but it also demands a huge new bureaucracy to run. More government and increased use of a drug whose effects can damage young adults’ motivation, mental health and IQ for a mere $30 per student? That’s a bad trade Arizona shouldn’t make.

Arizona businesses have expressed concerns, as well, and to keep their workplaces safe and drug-free, many would move their hiring operations to states where employee liability risks will be minimized. It doesn’t make sense.

Please vote no on Proposition 205. The evidence is everywhere. It will cause harm to our state and our residents for years to come.

Senators Sylvia Allen, Nancy Barto, Andy Biggs, Judy Burges, Sue Donahue, David Farnsworth, Gail Griffin, John Kavanagh, Debbie Lesko, Steve Pierce, Don Shooter, Steve Smith, Bob Worsley, Steve Yarbrough and Kimberly Yee

State Representatives John Allen, Sonny Borrelli, Russell Bowers, Paul Boyer, Noel Campbell, Regina Cobb, Doug Coleman, Mark Finchem, Rick Gray, Karen Fann, Anthony Kern, Jay Lawrence, Vince Leach, David Livingston, Phil Lovas, J.D. Mesnard, Steve Montenegro, Jill Norgaard, Justin Olson, Warren Petersen, David Stevens, Bob Thorpe and Kelly Townsend


The views expressed in guest commentaries are those of the author and are not the views of the Arizona Capitol Times.


  1. The publicity in Colorado and in Washington state when voters faced the same issue is that kids would suffer, addiction would increase and life would change profoundly. Nothing like that happened. But here, people caught with a small amount of MJ are jailed and have a criminal record for life. That is extreme. No I don’t use pot and don’t abuse substances but enough with ruining people’s lives.
    Moreover, this, IMHO, impinges on individual liberty, costs the taxpayers for law enforcement and is simply a bad rule.
    I say we need to get beyond this.

  2. Where did you get any of these statistics? There is no evidence to back up any of your claims or even a bibliography to support your work. This is an opinion based article without any factual backing and I would hope future voters are not basing their vote on this article. It makes me sad this quality of work is coming from azcapitoltimes

  3. Instead of wasting your time on a plant focus on the bigger problems like alcohol cigarettes and the big pharma. How many people do you think I see all the time in our town’s that are half dead offof xanax or teens drinking alcohol. Yet the they’re legal and still manage to acquire them . Riddle me that. Do your research and tell me why marijuana is illegal.

  4. Hi!
    I live on the Western Slope in Colorado and the sky has not fallen.
    In fact life is pretty much exactly like it was before legalization.
    Just like Arizona is now Colorado was awash in marijuana before legalization, but now we are enjoying the tourism and taxation benefits.

    Teen usage since legalization is DOWN and alcohol (sadly) is still the drug of choice for Colorado teens.

    As far edibles, they are no longer sold in shapes mimicking actual candy, which is good. The biggest problem is tourist coming and eating too much at once, heed the advice of your budtender!

    Also not all marijuana is not “SUPER POT”, you can buy various THC levels and, through state mandated testing, you can buy it in at any strength you want, it is listed right there on the bottle.

    Don’t believe the “reefer madness brigade”, things will be OK.

  5. “Although increasing legalization of marijuana has contributed to the growing belief that marijuana is harmless, research documents the risks of its use by youth are grave. Marijuana is addicting, has adverse effects upon the adolescent brain, is a risk for both cardio-respiratory disease and testicular cancer, and is associated with both psychiatric illness and negative social outcomes. Evidence indicates limited legalization of marijuana has already raised rates of unintended marijuana exposure among young children, and may increase adolescent use. Therefore, the American College of Pediatricians supports legislation that continues to restrict the availability of marijuana except in the context of well controlled scientific studies which demonstrate medicinal benefit together with evidence-based guidelines for optimal routes of delivery and dosing for specific medical conditions.” https://www.acpeds.org/marijuana-use-detrimental-to-youth

  6. In Colorado, since marijuana was legalized: “Marijuana traffic deaths increased 62% from 71 to 115 persons. Colorado youth past month marijuana use for 2013/2014 was 74% higher than the national average compared to 39% higher in 2011/2012. Colorado college age past month marijuana use for 2013/2014 was 62% higher…Colorado adult past month use was 104% higher. Number of hospitalizations related to marijuana has gone from 6,305 in 2011 to 11,439 in 2014. Crime in Denver and Colorado has increased from 2013 to 2015.” http://www.rmhidta.org/html/2016%20FINAL%20Legalization%20of%20Marijuana%20in%20Colorado%20The%20Impact.pdf

  7. There is no evidence in these arguments these are just opinions. Additionally The opposition has become a joke since taking $500,000 of contributions from Insys Therapeutics Inc. A corporation which produces the highly abused and lethal drug fentanyl.

    It is easy to see that Big Pharma as well as other local businesses and Governments are threatened by substances that can be grown in your backyard.
    The passing of prop 205 will leave less money for the private prison industry and law enforcement to prosecute and incarcerate users of a plant.
    Less money for Big Pharma to manufacture and sell marijuana for medical users at a grossly inflated price.

    Additionally the positions of the opposition on child safety are disingenuous. They don’t care about children – only their own agendas. We do a fairly good job of keeping minors from buying alcohol and tobacco as well as keeping firearms away from children and we can to the same with pot.
    Vote yes on Prop 205!

  8. Yes, can’t you see? “The evidence is everywhere.” except in this article, where there is no evidence or sources cited at all.

  9. This is all opinion based article. Can you please site your sources so it may be fact checked? Regardless if you are pro or against Prop 205, people should not just claim opinions as facts.

  10. Cannabis is safer than alcohol. Prohibition is a counterproductive fraud and a danger to public health and safety.

  11. People have the right to indulge in marijuana. It is infinitely times safer than alcohol and would provide a great income for the state. The government has no right to say what the people can do with their own bodies so long as it doesn’t adversely affect others. YES on 205!

  12. Borrelli always the Fascist police state representative. Sir no sir. Stop lying to proect the private for prison slave racket. We don’t need a nanny. Nanny Borrelli.

  13. Voting yes a holes. Mind your own business.

  14. Russell G. Davis

    Big Pharma is at it again. Vote yes. Don’t let the money from the mist corrupt industry in the nation further destroy our freedoms and extend thee failed war on drugs. Go after Opiates if you want to make a difference. Or alcohol.

  15. In AZ, once into law it can never be changed. Prop 205 is 22 pages of marijuana use. Candy is purchased then sprayed with THC of unknown strength and repackaged. It all looks the same…dangerous!!! Anyone can get marijuana for medicinal use. Why ever would we want to make marijuana legal in a society that has already become simple minded, shallow and entitled. It’s another way of Government enslavement to Socialism/Communism. Marijuana use in Pueblo CO is so dominate that mothers are asked not to nurse because of the documented brain damage in newborns. Neighbors smoke and it drifts over to your yard. You are stuck losing outdoor property enjoyment. Legal limit of marijuana is unknown. It’s a hazard on the road or in use of equipment. Cost of living will increase with businesses taking on more insurance and other safe guards for protection. Legalized Marijuana with up to 6 plants grown on private property makes no sense. Schools will receive little money for the devastation to society. Think deep and hard. Why ever would we want to expose our children and ourselves to the dangers of an addictive drug and one that can invade your property or any outdoor activity. NO on PROP 205!!!!

  16. This is dreadful hyperbole. They should cite there sources for such absurd statistics. Vote YES on 205. Nov 8th.

  17. Such lies, haven’t you cause enough harm, sending kids to jail, keeping the cartels in business. You are the danger danger.

  18. “We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men – not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular” Edward R. Murrow, in a “See It Now” broadcast, 1954

    “We are not descended from fearful men” – Ed died before he had a chance to meet the legislators who signed off on this piece.

  19. Second verse, same as the first. It just worked much better before people had access to evidence.

    Please join us in the 21st Century!

  20. I suppose this falsehood is what the citizen has come to expect when the truth would not serve a political purpose. Lie to us, tell us everything is all right now, there is big $$$’s in criminalizing people, we can build a bigger prison industry after we hire more cops to raid Grandma and Grandpa’s little garden from God. Is Prop 205 the most perfect cannabis legislation? Well the short answer is no. Is it better than existing laws regarding cannabis? A big heck yeah there folks. You must ask yourselves this…Do I want a government so powerful in their overreach to dictate what a free adult citizen of the United States can or cannot consume? We have to start somewhere and the Arizona Medical Cannabis program has been successful for many patients. It is time to take our freedoms back from the federal government; the war on cannabis has hurt families, sick and dying patients, created an entire class of criminals and contributed to environmental deterioration.

  21. Why Vote Yes on Marijuana Initiative Prop 205

    1. No felony charges for small amounts of Marijuana.

    2. Adults can legally possess up to one ounce with no charge.

    3. Home grow six plants per person, up to twelve per household.

    4. No longer a reason for children to be taken away from Marijuana users.

    5. DUI laws will have to be restructured for THC, ending bogus DUI’s.

    6. Property seizures for less than an ounce will stop.

    7. Marijuana will be commercially available to adults.

    8. Political repression will be lifted and we will be able to elect representatives that represent us.

  22. What if marijuana was legal in Arizona for recreational purposes?

    Our state would experience a renaissance of business, culture and arts if our citizens could be lifted from the tyranny of the marijuana laws. Our young people would no longer be preyed on and arrested to be branded as felons for the rest of their lives. There would be 16,000 less arrests each year. The seizing of property and children from us would be lessened.

    In Arizona each night 81,000 people are behind bars, 13 prisons and 15 county jails, yet our state has only 235 beds for the mentally ill in state hospital. Roughly 2 out of 100 adults in Arizona sleep behind bars.

    Our tourist industry would grow and large corporations would be less hesitant to come to our state. The computer technology based business would increase.

    We would be safer and more secure in our homes knowing that our doors are not going to be busted down for a little weed. Less people would die from alcohol poisoning. Marijuana is safer than alcohol.

    Liberty and justice would be for all.

    Marijuana is safer than alcohol.
    Vote Yes on Prop 205

  23. I have no respect and now denouce azcaptimes-to everyone I can reach. Rethink your ignorant ways. Voting no on prop 205 is racist, and a crim against each az cit. If u do not believe this, you are not informed. Geez, less stupid would help our state.

  24. What a crock of ****. Vote Yes on 205 – don’t believe the haters, there is no basis for their claims. How blind can they be? We deserve to be free.

  25. LEGALIZE IT! I agree with the majority of posters and so happy to see how many see thru the ****. Funny how easy I can get a gun if i wanted but pot????? We gots a crazy state.

  26. Wow! The potheads, with their single-digit IQs (pot destroys brain cells), are out in full force.

    Arizonans, READ THIS: If you think you’ll be able to enjoy a pot-smoke-free environment (e.g., spending a Sunday afternoon in park with your kids), even LIVING IN AN APARTMENT, if this ill-though-out prop passes, think again! It is BAD ENOUGH ALREADY with the “medical marijuana” passage. I constantly find myself inadvertently in some cloud of pot smoke: at bus stops, even outside grocery stores!

    Remember that many of our citizens suffer from ASTHMA and other respiratory illnesses. Most (responsible) parents DO NOT want their small children exposed to pot vapors.

    VOTE NO ON 205! If this **** passes, there will be NO GOING BACK! And we will ALL SUFFER.

  27. Prohibition is incompatible with American freedom.

  28. i did the research! I also addressed this in a huge blog segment. I am a republican and i say yes on 205. As long add the laws are enforced the same as alcohol consumption then what is the real issue? We have condemned the use of cannabis yet it’s ok to get hooked on opiates? Are you kidding? The economic, medical and textile uses alone are reason enough to pass this. Yes, the governing laws should treat this the same a alcohol use. Thats great. Do it! Now let’s get on with more pressing issues shall we.

  29. I am a registered Republican in Arizona, and I am voting YES for 205. And also I am voting against ANYONE opposed to 205. Trump for president! The rest of you geezers can go play shuffleboard.

  30. This is literally the dumbest article i’ve ever read. There’s nothing to support your arguments against 205.

  31. I should have worn my cowboy boots. It’s getting deep in here ladies and gents. Marijuana and hemp are a manifestation of God given to us to fulfill our every basic human need. It is the key to healing our land, healing our people, healing our economy, and healing our society by shifting power back to the people. The corporatacracy is threatened by these plants because their products: pharmaceuticals, oils, plastics, timber, cotton, concrete to name a few, are supremely outclassed and outperformed. Do your research. This family of plants is our savior my friends. When hemp and marijuana are legal to grow across America a new era of power, freedom and independence will return to the American people. Which is precisely why the powers that be want to withhold this plant from us.

  32. Stupid article. Almost as stupid as the ad with the former Colorado school superintendent. All the opposition for this is coming from people like TASC who are funded to preform drug tests on offenders and administer drug treetment for first time drug offenders (mainly marajuana) so they don’t have drug charges on their records. You see when this gets passed they no longer get funding for their “treatment of marajuana addiction” which is causing them to panic. How about you try treating real addicts like heroine or meth addicts.

  33. It’s people like this that go against it, that have no idea of the effects of marijuana. how it can actually be good for some people and actually be safer then legalized things like tobacco and alcohol.

  34. Wow. I bet this guy drinks like a sailor on his off days. Where are your revenues for those made up statistics. I’m praying for the person who wrote this so should anyone who isn’t taken in by this load.

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