Two states have taken steps to legalize marijuana, which could send mixed messages to young people in our community.
"Drugs is a part of this country. A lot of people probably don't realize it but it's a very bad part of this country and there's no going back to when there was no drugs," says Barry Vanderpool.
Vanderpool and his two grandsons enjoyed the day, but he knows that having the talk about marijuana use with them won't be such a walk in the park. Both Colorado and Washington have become the first states to challenge the drug war on marijuana and make it legal for recreational use.
"If there were some way to control the marijuana use as alcohol is, and I know a lot of it is misused, it possibly could work," says Sandy Armstrong.
Controlling the marijuana use is one job for law enforcement. No matter the amount used, local police want you to know it can have more consequences besides jail time.
"It's still going to influence your brain activity and how you progress. Especially the younger you start, the more influential it's going to be on your future," says Winchester police officer Clare Ruysen.
Officer Ruysen suggests that parents sit down with their children to discuss the future of their lives and this country.
"Don't be afraid to talk to your kids about it. Make sure you're educated before you talk to your children about it. It's really important to be able to know the facts and present them," says Ruysen.
In the commonwealth of Virginia, penalties for possession of marijuana range from 30 days in prison with a $500 fine, up to one year in prison with a $2,500 fine.
We asked Vanderpool, as a parent, to share his wisdom with young people who may be watching.
"I'm glad I'm not young anymore I guess is my answer," says Vanderpool.
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