In the weeks leading up to Halloween, Denver police warned the public about the potential danger for pot-laced candy being slipped to trick-or-treaters.
Opponents of ‘the pot’ brought this fear to a fevered pitch after the Denver Police released a video showing there are very little differences between regular candy and the fun kind.
Here is the PSA:
Proponents of legalized marijuana criticized the public service announcement as ‘baseless’ paranoia and cited that dispensary candy is labeled and heavily packaged in child-proof wrapping.
Not to mention there is no indication marijuana could harm a child in any long-term way after a single use; many children use marijuana products for various illnesses.
Dr. George Sam Wang, a medical toxicology fellow at the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center in Denver, says of accidental marijuana poisoning:
Children recover quickly in most cases. They don’t need more than a day or two of hospitalization. There were no deaths or lasting side effects.
The total number of children poisoned with marijuana candy and brought to the hospital in Denver? Zero.
The total number of calls to the CO police over questionable candy? Zero.
A Denver testing company made drug testing kits available to the public so that parents could test any questionable candy for THC and of the 1,000 free kits offered, only 45 parents took the offer, showing that very few parents were even concerned.
‘Candy-checking’ by parents is a long tradition in this country, so while the warning may be fair, stranger poisonings and the ‘razor blade’ urban legend are relatively rare.
It’s much more prudent to dress your child in reflective gear and glowsticks so they can be seen by motorists.
According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:
Halloween is consistently one of the top three days for pedestrian injuries and fatalities because of the increased number of young people out trick-or-treating and partygoers who could be impaired behind the wheel. In 2012, almost half of all Halloween crash deaths involved a drunk driver, compared with 31% on an average day that year. And 28% of Halloween crash deaths were pedestrians, compared with 14% on an average day. In 2012, almost half of all Halloween crash deaths involved a drunk driver, compared with 31% on an average day that year. And 28% of Halloween crash deaths were pedestrians, compared with 14% on an average day.
This is not to say precautions shouldn’t be in place. Those who use pot-laced candy products should always keep them away from children because there are several cases of children getting into adult stashes. But, fears about ‘evil stoners’ poisoning unsuspecting trick-or-treaters with ‘the pot’ continues to remain a hypothetical situation instead of a reality; while drunk motorists and shooters continue to be the consistent, quiet killers of children.