Millenials with Plans for Change
Legalizing Marijuana!

The legalization of non-medical marijuana.

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Time we Freed The Weed

  • Oct 26, 2010
As a committed Libertarian yet disapprover of drug abuse, I have to say it's time we Freed The Weed. Personally, I'm sick of the smell of pot whenever I walk around San Francisco and I only stick to drugs that advertise during Superbowl commercials, but the criminalization issue has become ridiculous.

Protect the children!

Anyone who seriously believes that teenagers are not already smoking pot privately is naive (I found out what boofing was the other day, and wish I hadn't). You know those little child-proof twist caps on the top of drug bottles? They actually keep out more adults than kids. The only way to stop your own kids from doing stupid or dangerous things is to educate them and talk frankly about life - not through legislation. And whatever other people's kids are doing isn't your problem.

Drugs kill!

Alcohol kills. Tobacco kills like the plague. And yet they're both legal. Interestingly enough, nobody has ever died from weed. More importantly, as a Libertarian, I say it's your choice if you want to kill yourself through drugs, and not the state's. Everyone has a Constitutional right to be stupid.

Ahh, but that increases healthcare costs to others!

True. Maybe we should ban all dangerous sports and driving to stop the adverse selection issue.

Majijuana makes you a danger to others!

And you should be arrested if you do that - just like you would if you were drunk.

We already have a big enough drug problem!

Yep. And as long as humans roam the Earth, it's not going away.

It would sabotage the war on drugs!

Despite our recent penchant for starting wars we can't win, it turns out that 95% of drug cartel revenue comes from marijuana. I would argue that their violence is a bigger problem than the drugs, and stemming their cash-flow seems to be the most obvious way of winning the "war".

Legalizing pot would cause the collapse of civilization!

Possibly, but the banking system got there first!

Legalization would hurt the profits of Philip Morris!

And that's why they're lobbying hard to make sure the Federal government sues California if legalization goes through - and they'll probably win. 

It would free up the cops to give out even more traffic tickets!

Very true. Let's fire some CHP to balance it out.

Hopefully I've covered everything. Time to go and enjoy my other favorite legal drunk - caffeine.

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December 29, 2011
I say go all the way with every drug. Drug addiction is a health problem, not a crime problem, and should be treated as such.
December 14, 2011
Thanks again for promulgating sound advice. My own opinion regarding marijuana is analogous to yours. Personally, I loathe the stuff; nearly all of my friends adore it, but its odor, stuporous effects and trite subculture are abhorrent to both my senses and sensibilities. Yet the criminalization of this relatively innocuous drug has created innumerable felons of blameless innocents, enabled further extraordinary corruption and overreach of the repugnant U.S. criminal justice system and provided hardened criminals more opportunities than Capone and his ilk enjoyed during Prohibition. Philip Morris oughtn't be blamed alone - as much as I'd love to see marijuana legalized and cultivated by a cottage industry, I don't know that it'll ever happen so long as the pharmaceutical industry is so entrenched as perhaps the most powerful special interest group to control the political class. Truly - they've even more cash and sway than Big Oil, Big Tobacco (foreign or domestic), Israel, Pakistan or any single trans-national corporate entity.

Decriminalization of drug use in Portugal is a proven, resounding success - a confirmation of social theories that Libertarians, Progressives, Classical Liberals, et al. have been promoting for years. Thus far, I've heard no credible argument that an extrapolation of this policy couldn't be equally successful in other nations in Europe and the Americas.

One final point:

Majijuana makes you a danger to others!

Only if sloth and the purchase of junk foods is considered dangerous. Umbrella laws strictly prohibiting the use of any intoxicant whilst operating vehicles and/or heavy machinery ought apply here.
December 15, 2011
This should have been a review - so well put. Thanks so much for the comment.
October 27, 2011
Legalization of pot was supported by conservatives like the late Bill Buckley and even former Secretary of State George Shultz. I'm predisposed to legalization in order to invoke the power to tax the substance and raise huge revenues for the States. Like the failed Alcohol Prohibition effort of the 30s, pot is used everywhere. Its legalization would conserve precious law enforcement and Court resources to handle real crimes.
November 02, 2010
Wow, you hit a nerve with this one. Very interesting approach, well done!
November 02, 2010
Thanks! Good to get the debate going.
November 01, 2010
Thanks for the analysis. The only point I can see that was not included was we could also tax the crap out of it to help offset some of the potential problems.
November 02, 2010
Yes - the only thing that scares me about that is that California's probably already spent the money! But seriously, taxing pot and getting some of our state's budgetary issues back under control can only be a good thing.
November 01, 2010
I hope it passes. Imagine all the money we could save when we release the people in jail for pot related crimes. Not to mention getting rid of it being smuggled in from other countries. Add to that if things progress where we can start producing and selling it legally like alcohol. Personally I do not think I would be a user but I do not think it should be illegal. Some things would have to be regulated though so that others smoking would not infringe on others rights in public places. The smoke is considerably thicker than cigarette smoke and I sure would not want to have to walk through a cloud of it on the way into a restaurant. The other thing that needs to be worked out is being able to test if someone is high while driving. We can check for blood alcohol and have developed legal limits. but with Pot is there an acceptable level of high? I doubt it. Is there a test that can tell if you are high or just one that says you have smoked in the past month or whatever. Careful legislation is needed here, it's not a simple solution I will be interested to see how this goes
November 01, 2010
Great points - I completely agree there are all sorts of kinks to iron out. The new test for buzzed driving might involve having the cop offer the driver a snack :-) Just kidding.
November 01, 2010
haha that would sure be funny.
November 01, 2010
I whole-heartedly agree! There's enough logic here to defend even the most baked pothead in the world. Thanks for such a terse analysis.
November 01, 2010
Thanks! I wonder if they'll invent the pot equivalent of the nicotine patch?
November 01, 2010
"The only way to stop your own kids from doing stupid or dangerous things is to educate them and talk frankly about life - not through legislation"

Just wanted to say - right on & great review!

I saw it mentioned in another article that 40% of high school seniors have smoked pot and I wouldn't be surprised if it was higher. And then there's the issue of the overcrowded jails with people who are in there for marijuana related offenses. 

As a side note, you're also not the only one sick of smelling pot around San Francisco =P
November 01, 2010
Thanks! I'd assume that percentage is higher too. It's no wonder that the US has the highest per-capita prison population in the world...
November 01, 2010
Fantastic overview - polarizing issues are well served by this type of succinct take sometimes. Just boiling it down to the basics does a great job at showcasing where the most irrational points are being made. I'd agree with you on all fronts -- thanks for sharing such a well thought out breakdown!
November 01, 2010
October 31, 2010
Very nice write up. I actually just finished my ballot the other night. I am curious how California will respond to this proposition.
November 01, 2010
It's getting nerve-wracking: I'm not sure I can handle the World Series finals *and* a midterm election all in one week!
November 02, 2010
well, Giants won the world series, so we now only have one more issue to wait on LOL!
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More Marijuana Legalization reviews
review by . December 02, 2010
Our drug laws are messed up.  There is no sense of proportionality of threat in what is regulated or how heavily.  Strangely marijuana plants are the only plants subject to an outright ban in the US under the Controlled Substances Act.  Even opium poppies are not banned by that act (though putting the flowers in ornamental, cut flower arrangements is, bizarrely).      I do not smoke pot.  I did a few times in college and found it, well, boring.  Moreover …
review by . February 24, 2010
posted in Politics Your Way
Make drugs legal
Heated debate broke out in my home shortly after ten o'clock last night after a Law and Order SVU (duh, duh) episode, a debate which will probably make my brother hate me and question my political beliefs for a long time to come. I'm not going to go into detail about how the debate started, but what I will tell you is that I questioned whether a man can be held lawfully responsible and imprisoned for an act which never impeded on the rights of another human being, no matter how sick and perverted …
Quick Tip by . December 11, 2011
I think if they came up with laws and guidelines as with alcohol and tabacco, the legalization of weed would be much better! I mean, Amsterdam had legalized it, so why can't we? It would also make the stuff much cheaper and we would probably have more control over its distribution (as with not selling to minors)      If it does get legalized, I hope the restrictions and guidelines don't get as annoying as with cigarettes. SF had gotten very silly with some ordinances, …
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Attempts to decriminalize cannabis  in the United States began in the 1970s. Several jurisdictions have subsequently decriminalized cannabis (also referred to as marijuana or marihuana) for non-medical purposes, as views on cannabis have liberalized, peaking in 1978.  The decriminalization movement supports efforts ranging from reducing penalties for cannabis-related offenses to removing all penalties related to cannabis, including sale and cultivation. Proponents of cannabis decriminalization argue that a substantial amount of law-enforcement resources would be freed, which could be used to prevent more serious crimes, and would reduce income earned by street gangs and organized crime who sell or traffic cannabis. Opponents argue that cannabis on street level today has a much higher percent of THC  with a stronger drug effect, the decriminalization will lead to increased crime, increased cannabis usage, and subsequent abuse of other illicit drugs. Gonzales v. Raich, 2005 ruled in a 6-3 decision that the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution allowed the federal government to ban the use of cannabis, including medical use.
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Politics, Drugs, Public Policy, Marijuana, Drug Laws, Drug Legalization


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