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As legalization continues to sweep the nation, there has been a steady uptick in the number of studies and news reports being done on children consuming marijuana edibles.

In a recent study published in a leading medical pediatric journal, the number of children age five and under who had access to marijuana had dramatically increased by slightly more than 147 percent in the United States.

This increase was from 2006 to 2013 and only amounts to fewer than 100 children in 2006 and 250 children in 2013.

According to Aaron Carroll, a pediatric health services researcher, those statistics show that a very small percentage of children out of a million who are exposed to marijuana during any given year.

A far different story being portrayed in many mainstream national news reports.

The increase in sensationalized reporting to overly dramatize the effects of legal marijuana is a classic media tactic to divert focus from the core issues. While attention is pulled away from the ongoing consequences of more readily available and accessible substances, such as alcohol, tobacco, and prescription narcotics.

Just this week the family behind the company who manufacturers OxyContin broke into the Forbes list amassing a $14 billion dollar fortune.

In 2013, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provided the following estimates:

• 25,000 people die from opioid and heroin abuse each year.
• 480,000 people die from tobacco use each year.
• 80,000 people die from alcohol poisoning each year.

As coverage of exaggerated marijuana edibles mishaps will continue to dominate airwaves, real substance issues that need political action remain untouched.

Furthermore, last month a study found a sharp decrease in opiate usage rates where medical marijuana was accessible.

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