Cannabis legalization is going to be on the ballot for California, Nevada, Maine, Arizona, Massachusetts, Florida, Arkansas, and Montana, in the upcoming election in November. There are lots of great reasons to vote in favor of cannabis if you live in one of these states. Cannabis use has made many people’s lives better, and it’s a fun recreational activity. Perhaps one of the most compelling arguments for legalizing cannabis is that legalization can help end the disastrous failure that is the war on drugs.
Cannabis Is Used As An “Exit Drug”
Up until this year, opponents of cannabis legalization liked to claim that cannabis was a gateway drug, meaning cannabis use often led to use of more dangerous and often deadly substances such as methamphetamine and heroin. This has not only been debunked several times through science, government officials in both the US and the UK have both reversed their prior positions on cannabis. A recent study even showed that people are using cannabis to get off of heroin and prescription painkillers.
Legalization Can Possibly End Mass Incarceration
It’s no secret that the United States likes to put people in jail. At over 2 million people, the US has the largest prison population in the world. A staggering 22 percent of the world’s prison population comes from the United States alone. Most of the people in prison are non-violent drug offenders in prison for marijuana possession. It’s gotten to the point where even members of law enforcement agree that this is a problem. Even former members of the DEA have come out in favor of cannabis legalization.
Cannabis Users Are Less Likely To Use Hard Drugs
In addition to people using cannabis as a way to get off of heroin, etc., a study conducted by the Harm Reduction Journal has also shown that people who use cannabis are less likely to use other substances. Naturally, this will curb the demand for drugs like heroin, which is what cartels have turned to since demand for cannabis on the black market has gone way down. People who are not using drugs such as heroin and methamphetamine are less likely to commit violent crimes. This will in turn help curb the growth of the prison population and make people safer. It’s pretty simple: people indulging in a little harmless herb smoking are not going to go out and hold up a liquor store, or go beat their wives and girlfriends.
Legalization Is Killing Drug Cartel Profits
According to the Washington Post drug cartel profits have gone down drastically since Colorado, Washington, and Oregon have legalized cannabis. If they are not making money, then they are obviously not going to be able to continue to operate as they are. The Mexican government also recently ruled that criminalization of cannabis was not constitutional, and has proposed legalizing cannabis in the country.
Featured Image Source: CNN.com
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