Book review: Legalizing Marijuana: Promises and Pitfalls, by Margaret J. Goldstein

Goldstein, Margaret J. Legalizing Marijuana: Promises and Pitfalls. Twenty-First Century Books, 2017. $35.99. 104p. ISBN 978-1-4677-9243-1. Ages 10-16. P9Q8

With medical marijuana legalized in 38 states and recreational marijuana legal in eight of these states, the topic is an important one for youth even if they cannot legally use the substance. Because the drug has been rated on the same level as opioids, the United States has not done research into the herb’s medicinal value as other countries such as China and Israel have done. Goldstein addresses this problem as well as the racist reason for restrictions and the parallel between prohibition against alcohol and marijuana, both of which resulted in gang-related crimes. She includes the history of the plant’s cultivation and use and the progress toward legalization, including attitudes. Verdict: Careful research enhances this topic bound to be popular with youth. Unfortunately, the material is somewhat outdates regarding laws because states have moved forward rapidly in the past 18 months to legalize marijuana. Yet much of the book is up-to-date and provides an education for people who have not investigated the topic.

March 2017 review by Nel Ward.

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