Why Is Marijuana Being Legalized?

Posted: January 2, 2014 in Articles
Tags: ,

Well, today if you wanted to purchase marijuana without the worry of getting in trouble, you could – in Colorado. Marijuana has been legalized as a recreational drug in the state of Colorado. Not only is marijuana legal in Colorado, it is also legal in the state of Washington, a city in Maine, and three cities in Michigan. In addition, seventeen states have decriminalized marijuana. Although there are only two states and a scattering of cities that have legalized marijuana for recreational use, it is expected that the states of California, Maine, Oregon, Massachusetts, and Alaska will have their citizens vote on the matter in the next two elections. Some speculate that America is moving towards having marijuana legalized in all states.

Some of the adverse health effects and negative facets associated with using marijuana long term include impaired thinking ability, memory problems, and lung damage. There are also links between marijuana and schizophrenia-like episodes or anxiety attacks.  The levels of potency varies and oftentimes, additional drugs are mixed in with marijuana sold on the streets. Marijuana usage can lead to stronger, more addictive drugs as well. Since using marijuana can strongly affect people in negative ways, it seems odd that state and city governments are legalizing it.

Seeing as certain states have passed safety laws, the marijuana legalization seems even stranger. Take for instance the seat belt laws that are in place in states across America. Maryland in particular is a good example of a state that enforces strict seat belt laws. Ever since it was made a primary offense in October 2013, Maryland drivers can be pulled over if they or their passengers are not wearing seat belts. States pass laws under the banner of safety, which is why it seems odd that some state and city governments are now legalizing marijuana, which is not a safe substance.

If safety is not the true reason, some other motive must be behind the push for legalization. Given the fact that legalizing something allows the state to make a profit through taxation, it would seem that money is driving this policy. There is no other apparent reason. Consider tobacco products. Cigarettes are taxed by the federal government and by every state in the union, sometimes very heavily. In New York, for example, cigarettes are taxed at over four dollars a pack. For every tobacco product that somebody buys, more money goes to the state than just “normal” sales tax. If state and city governments make marijuana legal, they can do the same thing with marijuana regulations and taxation as they did with tobacco and in the process, make a huge profit.

It seems odd that state and city governments are legalizing marijuana while they pass safety laws right and left. One might wonder if governments are ever really concerned about the welfare of their citizens. Sometimes it seems that money is the only thing driving their policies.

by Dink


  1. Libby says:

    It’s all about the money!

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