As We See It: Should Pot Be Legalized?

  As We See It: Should Pot Be Legalized?

Posted by CN Staff on February 25, 2009 at 07:23:46 PT
Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel 

Santa Cruz, CA -- We don't think we'd be accused of "smoking weed" to venture that Santa Cruz would solidly be in favor of the state of California legalizing marijuana.State Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, has introduced a bill that would regulate marijuana like alcohol, with people over 21 years old allowed to grow, buy, sell and possess cannabis. All these activities are illegal under federal law, which probably would not be affected by state legalization, which also is unlikely for the present.
Ammiano says taxes and other fees associated with regulating pot could put more than a billion dollars a year into state coffers at a time California really needs the money.Here's a couple of points to think about in favor of legalizing weed: The drug would be highly regulated. Does anyone believe kids don't have easy access to marijuana today? Or that it's easier to get than, say, alcohol? Legalizing pot would end costly anti-drug programs and cut down the criminal element associated with smuggling and selling pot. In Santa Cruz, where voters have already directed the city to make enforcement of marijuana laws its lowest priority, and where dispensing medical marijuana continues despite opposition from the federal government, the world has not ended, nor has public safety visibly been endangered. The widespread use of readily available pot -- hello, Michael Phelps -- has fostered a contempt for laws people don't agree with. The Prohibition movement nearly a century ago that made booze illegal is instructive: the government cannot successfully regulate personal behavior. But the arguments against legalizing marijuana also are persuasive. It's unlikely the federal government would just stand by. The feds have so far refused to recognize local decisions concerning legalized medical pot, so why would they approve recreational use of the drug? President Barack Obama, who has admitted drug use in his youthful past, has stated he is not in favor of legalization. The last thing our society needs is another means for addictive personalities to sink further into oblivion.While pro-pot proponents always say that marijuana is not addictive, most of us know people who have spent too many years toking up. This addictive use of the drug changes their behavior and personalities and can lead to wide-ranging personal problems that end up having a huge cost to society.Is marijuana as dangerous as alcohol? Based on the statistics about auto accidents, domestic violence and other anti-social behavior, the answer clearly is "no." It's worth considering making it legal. Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel (CA)Published: February 25, 2009Copyright: 2009 Santa Cruz SentinelContact: editorial santa-cruz.comURL: -- Cannabis Archives

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Comment #6 posted by FoM on February 26, 2009 at 07:48:21 PT

News Brief From The City Insider
Guess who's no fun at all?February 26, 2009Gavin Newsom came out pretty strongly last week in favor of protecting the rights of Californians to use medical marijuana. But what about the just slightly more controversial proposal from Assembleyman Tom Ammiano to legalize recreational pot?"I'm not supportive of it," Newsom said on Wednesday after a press conference in the Western Addition.URL:
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on February 26, 2009 at 06:15:36 PT

Related Article from
Plan to Tax and Legalize Pot Offered Amid California's Cash CrunchBy Bruce Mirken, Marijuana Policy Project February 25, 2009URL:
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Comment #4 posted by FoM on February 25, 2009 at 15:25:36 PT

OT: The Controlled Substances Act
This helps me to put it together better.Controlled Substances Act
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on February 25, 2009 at 14:25:58 PT

I think Congress would have to undo the laws on Marijuana. Decriminalization does work or it has for around 30 years in my state. The problem comes when people want to go public and sell it or grow it. Those laws would have to be addressed for fear to go away.
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Comment #2 posted by Hope on February 25, 2009 at 13:57:14 PT

Afraid to legalize because of the Feds?
Pre-legalize.Be ready.
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on February 25, 2009 at 07:39:08 PT

I Agree
Excerpt: It's worth considering making it legal.
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