New Study: Marijuana Smokers Three Times More Likely to Die of Hypertension

August 10, 2017 | Posted in Marijuana | By

A study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology this week has found marijuana use may increase a person’s risk of dying from hypertension more than threefold–and that the risk increases with each year a person smokes marijuana.

The study’s authors write,

Adjusted hazard ratios for death from hypertension among marijuana users compared to non-marijuana users was 3.42 . . . From our results, marijuana use may increase the risk for hypertension mortality. Increased duration of marijuana use is associated with increased risk of death from hypertension. Recreational marijuana use potentially has cardiovascular adverse effects which needs further investigation.

The study also concluded the cardiovascular risk posed by smoking marijuana may be greater than that of cigarette smoking.

Of course this is not the first study to find marijuana may be harmful to a person’s health. Marijuana use has been linked to stroke, cardiovascular problems, and even schizophrenia.

This underscores what we have said for years: Marijuana may be many things, but “harmless” simply is not one of them.

You can read this latest study here.

Photo Credit: “Cannabis Plant” by Cannabis Training University – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

AR Lottery Begins Fiscal Year on a Low Note

August 9, 2017 | Posted in Arkansas Lottery | By

Today the Arkansas Lottery released its financial reports for the month of July, marking the beginning of Fiscal Year 2018.

According to the reports, the Arkansas Lottery took in nearly $36.9 million, but paid out less than $6.7 million for scholarships–about 18% of its gross revenue for the month.

This is down from July of last year, when the Arkansas Lottery made $38.2 million and paid $8.7 million to scholarships.

You can read the Arkansas Lottery’s July report here.

Trump’s Judicial Nominee Looks Promising for Arkansas

August 9, 2017 | Posted in Judicial Confirmations | By

Last week President Trump announced a slate of judicial nominees. Among them are Leonard Steven Grasz, whom Trump has nominated to serve on the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals–the federal appeals court over Arkansas.

Mr. Grasz is currently an attorney in Nebraska. He has served in the Nebraska Attorney General’s office.

During his time with the A.G., Mr. Grasz helped defend Nebraska’s pro-life law banning partial-birth abortions before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Although the court ultimately struck down the law in Stenberg v. Carhart, the ruling paved the way for a federal law banning partial-birth abortion; that law was upheld in Gonzalez v. Carhart.

In 1999 Mr. Grasz helped file an amicus brief in support of Texas public schools after a lower court ruled student-led prayer at public school sporting events was unconstitutional.

So what does this mean for Arkansas? Well, since Arkansas is in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals, it means Mr. Grasz could hear federal challenges brought against state laws–such as Arkansas’ new pro-life laws.

Of course, with any judicial nominee it’s impossible to know for sure what the future holds, but given his track record, Mr. Grasz’s nomination to the Eighth Circuit looks promising.