The 2016 Presidential Election coupled with the brewing marijuana legalization project, are shaping up to make an epoch-making bang, which is expected to thunder around the nation and the rest of the world. It all began in 2012, when Colorado and Washington lifted the ban on the adult use of cannabis.
Backed by a 60% public support, five states have voted for ending the prohibition of cannabis, and four are on the point of legalizing medical cannabis.
What is marijuana?
Marijuana is made from Cannabis – a flowering plant that is indigenous to Central Asia and India. It is a recreational drug, which, statistically, is not addictive at all, is much less harmful than tobacco and alcohol and therefore deserves legalization. Apart from this recreational use, marijuana is used effectively in medicine, since it contains substances that act as pain-killers and appetite stimulators. One of the species of Cannabis is also used in production of a variety of products – paints, clothes, paper, insulation, cosmetics, etc.
Pace of Legalization
Since 2012, marijuana legalization seems to be an increasingly welcome idea both among USA officials and public. In 2014, Alaska and Oregon followed Colorado and Washington and ended the prohibition. Of all states ready to follow suit this time, California appears to be the most ardent marijuana legalization advocate. The state’s administration is moving California’s Proposition 64, which, along with freeing marijuana users from criminal responsibility for its use, is seeking to outline and implement a legal mechanism to regulate marijuana sales and production. This means that people involved in what used to be marijuana offenses (using, selling, distribution, etc.) will no longer be arrested for these activities, and records of those previously involved in and punished will be cleared automatically.
Once marijuana is legalized, it will have all grounds to become as common and available an attribute of restaurant life as food and alcohol. According to numerous supporters of this initiative, the acceptance of the law will end the degrading and pointless war against marijuana fans. Besides, legalization will put dealers out of the shade and open up new room for taxation. This can be a new source for monetary gains for budgets.
Latest and earlier polls conducted by various polling agencies have shown that the USA population (especially young people) is increasingly supportive of the initiative. October 2016 polls held in California by Public Poll Institute of California, as well as SurveyUSA, Hoover Institution/YouGov, and CALSPEAKS, revealed that 51-60% of those surveyed would say yes to the new law against 30-40% of those who would say no. Florida polls showed an even greater discrepancy in favor of yes – 71.3-77% against 21.6-32.2% respectively.
What about Abroad?
In 2013, Uruguay pioneered in marijuana legalization on a global arena. Jamaica, Columbia and Puerto Rica took efforts to legalize the use of marijuana. U.S. marijuana legalization efforts have triggered debates in Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, and some countries of Europe.