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 Forereels
Joined: 5/22/2011
Msg: 165
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?Page 8 of 8    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)

Here's a recent speech by Jimmy Carter.


That was a good read, and one of the few times I have agreed with Jimmy!!
 wvwaterfall
Joined: 1/17/2007
Msg: 166
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 10:16:27 AM

There are billions tied to keeping marijuana illegal and none for any good reason other than it allows police and prisons to profit.

Also the fact that Hemp is probably the best cash crop out there with over 5000 uses, one of which ironically was use to print the declaration of independence on.


Coupla points here:

Yes, there are major financial interests who want to keep marijuana illegal, even if a strong financial case could be made for legalization in terms of both added tax revenue and multiple expense reductions.

The problem is that any politician leading the charge for legalization will be subject to all sorts of well financed resistance. The only way I can see it happening is gradually, through DEA budget reductions and incremental decriminalization.

I also think it's important to split hemp legalization efforts away from the marijuana issue. A hemp plant is quite different from a marijuana plant, much more so today than it used to be, since marijuana strains have evolved to maximize THC concentration, making them short and lush while hemp plants are tall and spindly with so little THC content that anyone smoking hemp wouldn't experience anything more than a headache.

Legalizing hemp production would be a far simpler matter with far less resistance. Here in WV, a very socially conservative state, a bill legalizing hemp production sailed through the legislature several years ago with no real opposition contingent only on federal approval, which would NOT require congressional action - only an executive decision to restore interpretation of the original federal law making marijuana illegal that specifically exempted hemp due to its many industrial uses at the time.

I've long been a proponent of hemp. Canada legalized it with no negative impacts that I'm aware of, and hemp products are already legal in the U.S., even if growing hemp isn't. I use hemp shampoo, have a hemp briefcase and wallet, and buy hemp clothes whenever I can find good quality items, which isn't easy due to the fledgling status of the industry. I keep hemp paper on hand for special uses, which resembles fine stationary.

Oh, and only the early drafts of the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp. The final version was written on parchment. But hemp was certainly in common use for many, many things in this country until the post WWII era.
 Aristotle_Amadopolis
Joined: 12/8/2011
Msg: 167
legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 10:29:10 AM

The problem is that any politician leading the charge for legalization will be subject to all sorts of well financed resistance. The only way I can see it happening is gradually, through DEA budget reductions and incremental decriminalization.


The film takes a close look at that and the relationship between government and lobbyist.

They also look into the effect of decriminalization and come to the conclusion that it must be made legal and not just decriminalize as doing so does nothing to change the supply and all associated problems that stem from that.



The bottom line is the only problems that come from marijuana are those that are created by the people that make it illegal.
 wvwaterfall
Joined: 1/17/2007
Msg: 168
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 11:21:13 AM

They also look into the effect of decriminalization and come to the conclusion that it must be made legal and not just decriminalize as doing so does nothing to change the supply and all associated problems that stem from that.


Oh I agree that it should be legal. I just think that is unlikely to happen all at once without some political imperative that at the moment I can't imagine. Perhaps if the drug cartel violence escalated to such a degree that the rational argument for legalization was viewed as a way to stop the violence. But more likely we'd just treat it like the 'war on terror' and spend more energy on violent solutions than dealing with the root of the problem. We're much more apt to "go get the bad guys" than take away the reasons for bad behaviors to happen.

In terms of what's politically feasible, this just seems like an issue that needs to be nudged in the right direction rather than changed in one fell swoop. Deal with rising incarceration expenses by tweaking sentencing guidelines to reflect the actual risk to society various crimes present. Change the 'war on drugs' strategy much like we're changing our overall military strategy to make it more streamlined. That sort of thing.

Then once we get used to a lessened emphasis on drug 'crimes', take the final step to legalize marijuana with appropriate constraints.
 Aristotle_Amadopolis
Joined: 12/8/2011
Msg: 169
legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 11:36:04 AM

...Perhaps if the drug cartel violence escalated to such a degree that the rational argument for legalization was viewed as a way to stop the violence.

...and in there lies the grand irony.

The stiffer laws and penalties the more violent it becomes.

As the risk goes up so does the reward.

The movie interviewed dealers and one thing they are all for, is keeping weed illegal as the harsher the penalties the more they can make.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 170
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 7:20:03 PM
I don't know if the new Congress will have any strong inclination to amend the Controlled Substances Act. That's the federal law that lists marijuana as a Schedule I substance--meaning it has no officially approved medical use. As long as the CSA remains unchanged, any state law that allows marijuana use will be invalid. I think it should be up to the people of each state to decide, but that's not how it is right now.
 wvwaterfall
Joined: 1/17/2007
Msg: 171
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/4/2012 9:33:40 PM
I think it should be up to the people of each state to decide, but that's not how it is right now.


I'd support that change. That's one of the ways it might be more politically palatable if it were part of a state's rights agenda.
 matchlight
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 172
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legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 2/5/2012 10:54:20 AM

That's one of the ways it might be more politically palatable if it were part of a state's rights agenda.


A few years ago, when the Supreme Court decided Gonzalez v. Raich, the California medical marijuana case, the Court-watchers wondered if the so-called conservative justices would uphold states' rights, or Congress' power to regulate interstate commerce. Except for Justice Thomas, they went for the latter.
 Aristotle_Amadopolis
Joined: 12/8/2011
Msg: 173
legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?
Posted: 4/7/2012 9:05:46 AM

legalized marijuana...a possible American reality?

That depends on if you are on the Government / Drug dealers side, or on the side of the tax payer.

As Drug Dealers and the Government would like to keep it illegal as it is in their financial best interest.


http://i.imgur.com/xbVPt.jpg
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