The Teens view on Marijuana Usage

Teens have this little thing called teen angst, and with this “angst” we are subject to experiment with things that we technically shouldn’t because our frontal lobe isn’t developed yet or we want to do something because we know its illegal or not allowed.

One influence that surrounds us teen Angelenos is Marijuana and now Marijuana is legal in the state of California for 18+-year-olds,  Just because it’s legal for them and no longer criminalized in the state doesn’t mean that teens are not going to use it, weed has been an influence in the teen culture. You can put out as many PSA’s on Weed and the teen brain yet the truth is Teens will continue to smoke and try weed and thiers nothing that can prevent it. Some claim it helps them de-stress, enhance creativity and is fun when hanging with a group of friends while for others it can make them depressed, unmotivated and paranoid. Knowing this and knowing that Weed will be much more present in our city its vital that both opinions and sides are expressed when it comes to teen marijuana usage.

At this creative workshop with the Department of Public Health  I had the opportunity to participate in a day-long Message Creation Session asking youth “how to talk about Marijuana Use with your Peers” this was organized by Fraser advertisement, The Department of Public Health and held at Community Coalition off of Vermont and Manchester.

Teens from all over Los Angeles were gathered and grouped together to create a story idea for a Public Service Announcement for teens informing them what happens when you use Marijuana. My group decided to make our PSA reasonable, knowing that teens won’t ever stop using Marijuana we decided to share true stores- positive and negative about teens experience with weed. Two of those stories were somewhat positive, explaining how a student uses it sparingly to enhance their creativity, another how it helps him cope with stress when the not so bright stories were about an embarrassing experience from weed when a girl got paranoid at a party and another when a boy got caught smoking it and his parents sent him off to military school, not even showing up at his graduation.

Weed is different for everyone and it’s important as a  teen you know the risk of using it and your tolerance, if you feel it’s not the thing for you then there’s no pressure to do it, you have your whole life to try things so it can wait until you are more mature. If you do enjoy using it then make sure you have a specific reason and make sure you’re not dependent or constantly using it.  Overall, this experience was interesting and eye-opening, I learned a lot about other teens perception and experience on Marijuana which is important for us to share!

Posted by Lily Larsen

I am a 17-year-old​ activist/arts advocate and have been participating in marches, protests and petitions since I was 5 years old. I serve on Mayor Garcetti's Youth Council for South LA. And have generated a petition to ban factory farming in California with over 55,000 signatures. I organize community events and get teens like me connected with social justice issues and activism all over LA.

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