Sunday, October 31, 2010

Campus Safety Representative

Hannah Eddy is a Senior Customer Service Representative at the University of Denver’s Campus Safety Center. She reluctantly agreed to the interview, and it makes sense given how many times I’ve been declined an interview by campus safety and police officers.

After presenting Eddy with all the positive effects that occurred following a 1983 Alaska 2-cent alcohol tax increase. I asked her why marijuana legalization gets more attention, especially when alcohol is relevant to more people and effects more people compared to marijuana. She took a second to digest the question, then said, “pot is more popular with the younger crowd, and 1983 was a long time ago, few remember that.”

“I don’t know much about alcohol tax increases, but if it gets more publicity than it will certainly get more attention,” said Eddy.

She agreed that an alcohol tax increase is more important than legalizing marijuana. “It negatively affects more people.” When informing her of the negative effect it would have on the restaurant and beverage industries, she said “stores will feel the effect more than bars,” her rational being that you can’t get bar rats out of bars regardless of price, but when your short on cash while grocery shopping alcohol is likely to be left out because its not a necessity.

“Stores are likely to lobby against it (alcohol tax increase) because of the negative effect it will have on their income,” said Eddy. Lobby or not, those stores have withstood tax increases in the past, which means they can do it again. What is more valuable; salvaging jobs in a industry that benefits from products that cause death, or gaining income for several other industries including health care, while reducing death?

I asked if she had heard of any instances were a campus safety officer had seen or dealt with a person who possessed a marijuana medicinal card, and if so, how does it compare to dealing with someone who has marijuana but no marijuana card. She said she hasn’t heard of anything and couldn’t tell me even if she did because all records are confidential.

Eddy, like every other person I interviewed agreed that marijuana cards should only be given to people who have legitimate health issues in order to avoid resale. The problem with that is, what’s legitimate? Everyone has conflicting perceptions of what qualifies as legitimate. I’m going to say the same thing here as I said from my last post, if a card holder is reselling his or her prescription, then it’s clearly not a medical necessity.

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