Pubdate: Thu, 13 Sep 2012
Source: Portland Tribune (OR)
Copyright: 2012 Pamplin Media Group
Author: Andrew Scarlett


Quite frankly, I don't see a lot of problems with legalization (End 
expensive marijuana prohibition, Aug. 23).

Legalization will allow for legal purchase of marijuana by adults, 
not children. The point that is made that it will increase access by 
children is bunk. Children already have easy access to pot, alcohol 
and drugs, both legal and otherwise.

The cartels that run the drug trade will have one less market to make 
money from.

The "marijuana is addictive" claim is bunk as well. It can be, 
psychologically speaking, but the chances of you being struck by 
lightning are far greater than becoming addicted to pot. Drug use 
does damage communities, but it's high time people get the propaganda 
out of their heads and quit lumping in hemp and marijuana with actual 
dangerous drugs.

According to FDA classifications, marijuana is deemed worse than 
cocaine and heroin, not to mention alcohol and ... cigarettes, all of 
which have documented deaths from their use.

It can be taxed and regulated, and the legalization of marijuana 
will, in many cases, lead to decreased use. Many people are high on 
the buzz of it being illegal and thus attractive. If there are no 
more penalties for possession and use, then the attraction fades and 
many will stop.

For law enforcement, this will be a great boon as many people who 
drink only do so because pot is illegal. With less people drinking, 
you have a decrease in drunk driving, and things like domestic 
violence will almost disappear.

Also an advantage for those of you in law enforcement, your manpower 
can be focused on getting drugs off the streets and focusing on 
crimes. Your jail and prison populations will decrease, although the 
corporations who own your prisons (however many there are) will not 
like that fact very much. It will save many costs and generate revenue.

Give it a fair chance. If it doesn't work, then make it illegal again.

Andrew Scarlett

Birchy Bay, Newfoundland, Canada
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