Is Marijuana a Gateway Drug?
AbstractAlthough many cocaine users initiated marijuana prior to cocaine, no formal evidence exists that marijuana consumption causes, or is a gateway to, cocaine consumption. This paper employs a two-stage instrumental variable procedure to estimate a structural effect of past marijuana demand on current cocaine demand using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Extensive specification testing verifies that the instruments for marijuana demand, consisting of two state-level marijuana penalty variables, the state beer tax and an indicator of parental alcoholism, have sufficient explanatory power for marijuana demand and have no separate impact on cocaine demand. Results provide strong support for the gateway hypothesis, indicating that marijuana use in 1984 increases the probability of cocaine use in 1988 by 29 percentage points for respondents who have never used cocaine by 1984. The implication is that cocaine use can be more effectively deterred by redirecting some enforcement resources from cocaine to marijuana.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Eastern Economic Association in its journal Eastern Economic Journal.
Volume (Year): 24 (1998)
Issue (Month): 2 (Spring)
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- I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Marijuana Legalization Pros and Cons
by email@example.com (Christopher) in Capitalist Shrugged on 2010-04-21 01:37:00
- Horowitz, Joel L., 2000. "Should the Dea's Stride Data Be Used for Economic Analyses of Markets for Illegal Drugs?," Working Papers 00-02, University of Iowa, Department of Economics.
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Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 539-554, July.
- Jeffrey DeSimone, 1999. "The Relationship Between Marijuana Prices at Different Market Levels," Working Papers 9915, East Carolina University, Department of Economics.
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in: Risky Behavior among Youths: An Economic Analysis, pages 271-326
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- Hans Olav Melberg & Anne Line Bretteville-Jensen & Andrew M. Jones, 2007.
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- Moreno-Sanchez, Rocio & Kraybill, David S. & Thompson, Stanley R., 2003. "An Econometric Analysis of Coca Eradication Policy in Colombia," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 375-383, February.
- Duarte, Rosa & Escario, Jose Julian & Molina, Jose Alberto, 2006. "Marijuana consumption and school failure among Spanish students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 472-481, October.
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