The Cause and Effects of the Legalization of MarijuanaThe Cause and Effects of the Legalization of Marijuana
Marijuana has been illegal in this country since 1937 and the Marijuana Tax Stamp
Act. Though the causes of it being made illegal are rife with ignorance and greed, the
tide is shifting, slowly but inevitably marijuana, or cannabis as it is properly called, is
seeing more and more Americans in favor of legalization. According to Rasmussen, a
recent nationwide poll says that fifty-seven percent of Americans are in favor of
legalization, a growth of eleven percent since March 2012.
An increase in positive public opinion is an effect of several factors more than it is
the cause of any of them. Although legalization would be an effect of increased public
opinion, the real causes are believed be attributable to the following:
* Wide spread usage: A study by PLoS Medicine states that as of 2010, over forty-
two percent of Americans have tried marijuana at least once. Just over twenty-
percent report having tried it by age fifteen. That number jumps to fifty-four
percent by age twenty-one.
* Decimalization: While federal law lists marijuana as a schedule one narcotic,
the attitude of most states does not reflect this perceived severity, and instead
reflects the true opinions of the states. For example, in the state of Ohio the
possession of under a hundred grams of marijuana is a misdemeanor punishable
by zero jail time and a max fine of 150 dollars. Possession of one-hundred to
two-hundred grams in the state of Ohio is also a misdemeanor, punishable by a
non-mandatory thirty days in jail and a max fine of 250 dollars.
* Greater education about the facts: No longer deceived by lies and demagoguery,
the public is now able to read and form their own opinions about the true pros and cons
* The vast national debt: The United States has over 15 trillion in...