15. The reasons why it is illegal are stupid.
There was no fancy medical board that came together and, through medical research and scientific experiments, declared that marijuana is harmful and therefore should be illegal. Racism, sensationalistic journalism and the timber industry are some of the reasons why marijuana is illegal today.
Marijuana was described as a narcotic that was only used by Mexicans and black degenerates in jazz clubs. Marijuana as a narcotic is the first myth. It is not a narcotic because it is extremely different from opioids like heroin and morphine.
People argued that marijuana use is the reason why white women had sex with black men, and it would make black people like the humans they are rather than the second-class citizens that they wanted them to be.
The timber industry also had interests in marijuana being illegal because hemp could be used to produce paper and could in essence take over the timber industry. Investors in the timber industry obviously did not like that, so they had a huge smear campaign against it, and it worked .
14. We never learn our lesson
You remember the Great Gatsby? Do you know why he was rich? He was a bootlegger. He created alcohol and sold it during Prohibition. Jay Gatsby was essentially a drug dealer (as alcohol is a drug) and owner of a drug cartel.
The lesson here is not that drug dealing is bad—it’s that people are going to find a way to fill the needs of the public anyway. So people are not going to sit and twiddle their thumbs when they want something that has been prohibited. They are going to go out and find it, putting themselves in harm's way with the risk of being killed or arrested. You would think that the United States government would learn their lesson.
13. Money, Money, Money
Marijuana cultivation is a profitable industry and the fact that millions of Americans purchase marijuana every year and the majority of the marijuana used is not grown in the United States just is not fiscally responsible. Billions of dollars are thrown overseas every year to often times sleazy people.
12. This is legal
Cigarettes are more harmful and damaging to your health than marijuana.
11. This is also legal
Alcohol is also a lot more harmful and damaging to your health than marijuana. Alcohol has also contributed to the stardom of these two:
10. These are also legal
And have caused the deaths of these iconic celebrities:
9. Proper marijuana regulation can keep it out of the hands of high school teenagers
This is contingent to an improvement in the conversation surrounding illegal substances that we do have. We cannot just tell children “No, don’t do it because it's bad!” because that is just going to make the substance increasingly appealing.
However, we need to have a conversation about what happens when you do it, why it happens and what it can possibly do to you in the end. Explaining things to kids this way and having an honest conversation with them will allow them to use alcohol or marijuana responsibly if they so choose to use it.
8. It would keep Snoop Dogg out of jail.
Snoop Dogg has been in and out of custody for marijuana possession. His number of possession charges is actually kind of ridiculous.
7. I’m Barack Obama and I...
Well at one point, he approved this message. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, our 44th president was a HUGE pothead when he was younger. When he was growing up in Hawaii, according to biographer David Maraniss, he had a group of friends that would gather after school to smoke weed called the Choom Gang. In his book Dreams from My Father, President Obama talks about his weed-filled days at Occidental College, leading to Key and Peele’s hilarious skit on Obama’s college days.
6. Politicians are becoming more open about smoking marijuana
Remember when President Clinton said he tried it but did not inhale? Years after, you have people admitting that they used drugs—from George W. Bush to Senator John Kerry. If we are not crucifying our presidential candidates anymore, that means there has been a shift in public opinion, right?
As of May 22, 56 percent of Americans want marijuana to be legalized. Rasmussen is a right-leaning polling organization that has a tendency of skewing their polls to favor Republicans and Republican causes.
4. Climate Change
We are looking for alternative energy sources to sustain the longevity of the Earth. Many argue that hemp can be used as a biofuel.
3. Corporations are still interested in marijuana being illegal
Prisons are being controlled more and more by private institutions as opposed to state and federal governments. It's a very profitable industry that rakes in millions of dollars each year. They also have power in Washington, lobbying for harsher prison sentences and more laws that criminalize more behaviors so they can continue to have occupants. So, they have an interests in the people being charged with a petty crime, such as marijuana possession, to have longer prison sentences.
2. Marijuana laws disproportionately affect people of color in inner-city neighborhoods
The number of people of color behind bars on drug charges is ridiculous. Often their sentences are caused because of policies such as Stop and Frisk that disproportionately affect African-Americans and Latinos. 25 percent of people behind bars are there for petty drug crimes. It is egregious and a waste of money.
Francesska is a proud Bostonian. She is a Political Science and Sociology major with a minor in Faith, Peace and Justice. In other words, she often has no time for herself. When she does have time for herself, she spends it tackling tough issues such as various social constructs or she is being indoctrinated by MSNBC because CNN has turned into a joke and Fox News is Fox News. She is an ardent supporter of the New England Patriots and Boston Celtics and a bandwagon Red Sox fan. Eager to share her opinions she joined Gavel Media as a staff writer. When she is not sharing her opinion in Gavel articles, she is sharing them on twitter @toearlyforthis.