Drug Scandal Sparks Pot Debate

By: John DesRivieres Email
By: John DesRivieres Email

The Langlade County drug investigation has sparked a heated debate on our Webchannel and Facebook page about the effects of marijuana.
Some say it's not harmful and some of the educators involved shouldn't be in trouble, others say, pot is illegal and the teachers are role models for children.

We spoke to experts on both sides of the issue.

Brenda Schultz, a clinical substance abuse counselor with Family Counseling Services of Wausau tells Newschannel 7, pot has harmful short-term and long-term effects. They include memory loss, loss of motivation and she says pot can be as harmful to your lungs as cigarettes.

Schultz says, possibly the biggest problem with the Langlade County teacher drug scandal is the message it sends to kids.

"Whether they want to be a role model or not, the kids are saying, well if that person can do it and they are successful...then why can't I", said Schultz.

On the other side of the issue is Gary Storck, the Vice President of the Madison chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Law.

Storck tells us, marijuana is a plant that can help with pain and stress relief and should be legalized.

Storck says, the accused teachers are facing undue scrutiny.

"We should be studying this plant intensely and unlocking the potential of it, not locking up teachers and other people that use it", said Storck.

5 area educators involved in the drug investigation remain on paid administrative leave, 4 in Antigo and 1 in Merrill, as their district leaders continue to investigate the allegations.

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