Whatever you think of marijuana morally or health-wise (Buddhists say it clouds the enlightened mind, for example)…putting folks in prison over it is ridiculous. Compared with the danger to self and other that cigarettes or alcohol (or driving a car, or using toxic household cleaning agents) offer, it’s harmless.
The only harm that comes out of it is related to its status as a black market, illegal good. Make it legal, tax it, imagine what you could do with those taxes. Control it, make it safer, keep it out of schools, kill gangs’ business…too bad legalizing pot is, for now, still a political death-wish.
Ran across this intelligent post via writer Ryan J. Davis this morn. Excerpt:
Friday, March 27, 2009
Barack Obama was asked about legalizing marijuana yesterday at his online town hall meeting and laughed the question off. Which is fine. I agree with John on Americablog, that we should understand what’s politically possible. “No president of the United States, today, can come out in favor of such a thing. It’s political suicide. I can’t even believe some people are upset with Obama over this.”
What I am upset at Obama about is his administration’s failure to end federal raids on medical marijuana dispensaries. Attorney General Eric Holder said last week that he’d halt these raids, but on Wednesday DEA Agentsraided a San Francisco dispensary.
Efforts being made locally and statewide to legalize or decriminalize marijuana are seriously threatened if Obama’s administration continues these unnecessary raids on licensed businesses. He should keep his promise and end them. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it’s politically popular — 72 percent of Americans favor ending the raids.
It’s also important to remember that these Puritan laws have impact outside our border as well. In Mexico, the ongoing war between drug cartels has killed 1,000 people so far this year. It’s believed that 75 percent of their business is marijuana. If pot were legalized, the free market would cripple these gangs...