Ethan Bachand ’22
On Tuesday, March 26, the Students for Responsible Choices peer education group hosted “The Devil’s Lettuce on a Catholic Campus” in Hogan Ballroom, an event geared towards educating the campus community on marijuana and the ways it can possibly be abused.
The people involved include SRCs Caroline Telesz ‘22, Jocelyn Buggy ‘22, Mary Cronin ‘22, and Kevin Fischer ‘21. The well-constructed panel of experts included: Joy LaGrutta, a substance use education consultant, Professor Daniel Bitran of the Psychology Department, Kevin O’Connell, Director of Student Integrity & Community Standards, and Chief Shawn de Jong of Public Safety.
After an introduction by the team that organized the panel, a 20-minute documentary from Netflix on the history and effects of cannabis was shown. The educational film bluntly laid out the psychological effects we do and do not know when it comes to marijuana use. The video was well-received by the audience, with funny clips, including one from the Seth Rogen and James Franco film “Pineapple Express.”
After the documentary, the four leaders of the event posed questions for the panelists. The first question was one that was on many people’s minds: how legalization in Massachusetts affects their jobs. The two education professionals on the panel outlined how this affected their studies, while the two college officials stayed the course. A similar position would be brought up throughout the night, as the panelist consistently referred back to the fact that without any federal decriminalization, the College’s policy on marijuana would not be able to change.
A few more questions were posed for the panelists, with participants from the audience raising questions as well. People who took the mic posed questions about the legality of certain situations while others asked about the possibility of students receiving drug testing kits to determine if their weed was infused with any other drugs.
Speaking after the event, SRC Caroline Telesz stated, “I think the event went well. It is important to educate the Holy Cross population about a prevalent issue on campus not many people talk openly about. Even after the legalization of marijuana, there isn’t enough talk on campus about what it is, how it can be abused, and what marijuana use is like here at Holy Cross.”
Mary Cronin backed up this sentiment, saying, “It was a really good turn-out which we weren’t expecting, and the panelists were really knowledgeable and gave really good answers. It was important because it’s not usually addressed, and it’s important people know about it.”