To the Editor:
I am writing in response to the ongoing discussion on the Roosevelt Island Parents Network (an email list) and beyond about marijuana use on the Island. A handful of moms are outraged at the lack of response from Public Safety to adults smoking pot in public and are demanding the rest of us support their campaign to plaster the Island with signage to that effect, or organize a demonstration in front of PSD.
Ironically these same moms don’t think twice about having an open container of alcohol at Island movie nights on Firefighters Field or at the Octagon BBQ pits – or, for some of them, smoking cigarettes regularly around their children (and surely we can all agree that the regular close contact with second-hand cigarette smoke is much more dangerous than the occasional whiff of marijuana?). In fact, [shock horror!], some of these moms have even smoked a joint a time or two! Where’s the vilification of these residents?
Perhaps we should broaden our perspective before asking for a harsh response. Public Safety’s lackluster response to traffic violations (unless it happens to be outside their offices) is more of a danger to our children than their turning a blind eye to pot smokers. Of course we all agree that areas around schools and playgrounds should be smoke, drug, and alcohol free! But the problem here was with a single adult male, under the influence of drugs, who reacted violently when questioned and threatened with photos and police – not hordes of pot-smoking youths who, according to the Parents Network, seem to loiter on every Island playground.
The alleged assault on an Island mother is in no way excusable, and if facts are proven, of course the aggressor should be punished. However, can we stop the mass panic and witch hunt for pot smokers by people who are no angels themselves!