Myths of Marijuana: Former DEA Chief Says Pot Legalization a 'Disaster'

Peter Bensinger warns that marijuana is not as harmless as many believe.
3:00 | 02/18/14

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Transcript for Myths of Marijuana: Former DEA Chief Says Pot Legalization a 'Disaster'
However will welcome to power players on Devin Dwyer we're joined -- -- the former head of the US drug enforcement agency Peter Danziger Peter thanks for being here. Had appeared to see you served three American president essentially one of the top officials leading the war on drugs. And what do you think when you -- states like Colorado -- Washington roll back. Some of those enforcement mechanisms you fought for for so many years I think it's a disaster. The problems that will come from legalizing. At least small amounts of marijuana and Colorado and Washington State. Will damage the young people in that state. It will damage the industry and state and put the highways and -- it sends the wrong message to the public. And it disregards. The science. And marijuana to begin -- DEA agent in Colorado. Right now. What are you thinking you'd like to. This world is strange because you took an oath of office to uphold the law. And the constitution of the United States and enforce the federal laws and you've got a president. Who's unwilling to do and I've talked to DC agents believe what do they tell you what it -- a zillion plus what you know. What's going -- mrs. this is a green wave that is gonna do a lot of damage. The people that DEA goes after -- the traffickers and believe me they'll come to -- they already have arrived. They see this legalization as a great opportunity. To sell to the young people. And to sell others that are now going to be able to have marijuana and possession marijuana posed an enforcement. Challenge before. The legalization -- Colorado. Isn't this just a new type of enforcement challenge it's much worse. Think of what's gonna happen on the highways look at -- It's the second largest clause. Of highway fatalities. Just after alcohol let's talk about alcohol President Obama in an interview said that he believes. That marijuana is no more harmful than alcohol I don't agree with the present all and neither guys who -- director of the national institute on drug dealers doctrine horrible. Nor the American Medical Association. They both say marijuana is not safe and the Food and Drug Administration not legislators. Should decide what's -- And the -- anguish should decide. Not the president of the United States. What's legal. I think the public is gonna -- disaster. It's addictive. One and eleven people using marijuana. Will become dependent on. And if you're under. Nineteen. It's one out of six. The message that the president case. Is not the right message he made a comment about use he thinks it's -- -- know it's dangerous and addictive. It's illegal in this country. And it should not be tried as an experiment so -- through force what are some of that. The myths as you see it about marijuana use one is that it's harmless. It's harmful. It stays in the body you'll dissipated -- about an hour -- Marijuana can stand your body for a week goes to where -- fast which is our brain. It causes. Short term memory loss of his chronically. It impacts on the immune system and -- regularly. It affects your depth perception but in the grand scheme of things -- a former DEA administrator. With limited enforcement resources. Isn't going after small. This amount users. Kind of a waste of time let's think of the cities where you've got these open drug -- New York has a pretty safe place. Compared to what was 2030 years ago. Why because they've cleaned up. The drug markets. They've taken steps to. Arrest people take a -- to street corners when they're selling dope the crime is down because the places that. Have allowed crime to occur have dried -- you take away. This environmental. Improvement. And people -- gonna be subject to more crime. Thanks Peter that's all the time we have on Devin Dwyer for ABC news -- Yahoo! News. We'll see you next time.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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