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DeKALB — Scot Schraufnagel, political science department chair, gave a presentation about the costs and benefits of the recent legalization of marijuana on both a state and national level 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Fatty’s Pub and Grille, 1312 W. Lincoln Highway. The presentation was part of NIU ‘s monthly STEM Café events.

Schraufnagel discussed the process of legalization, specifics of the law, what the federal law looks like and how it can contradict state law and the controversies behind legalization.

There has been a documented increase in traffic accidents in Colorado and Washington; however, there is no data on whether the people involved in the crashes were under the influence of marijuana, Schraufnagel said.

“It was most interesting to hear about the rise in car accidents since legalization,” STEM educator Jeremy Benson said. “I would like to hear more about it when more complete data comes out.”

Fatty’s had a full house Tuesday, and Benson said people came out to get answers about legalization.

“This is something very topical that people are interested in,” Benson said. “People want to understand the changes in the law, and they want to understand how the new law works or what the implications can be.”

Tom Dymond, an attendee said he thinks that learning more about marijuana is important because of legalization.

“It’s not just about keeping people informed,” Dymond said. “It also shows what the university is doing, which is important. For parents, it’s about learning more about where you want to send your kids to school and how it differs from other state schools.”

There may be follow up sessions continuing the discussion of marijuana legalization, Judith Dymond, STEM outreach associate, said.

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