One important aspect of any law is how effective the law is in preventing the behavior it is designed to prohibit. When I taught high school I became certain that marijuana use by teens and pre-teens destroys any chance they have of gaining anything by going to school. As a special education teacher, I learned that many of the students who qualified for the special education program were heavy marijuana users, A great number of those qualifying around middle school were actually stoned on the day they were tested. Marijuana was present all over campus and any student who wanted some did not have to look hard to find it. All but the few who take honors classes learn almost nothing from the 9th through the 12th grades. Special education students on marijuana have no chance at all.
Knowing this, should marijuana be legalized? Well, the laws we have now are completely useless in keeping it out of the hands of students. Where students are concerned, it doesn’t matter whether it is legal or not. They get all they want. There is no point in wasting money trying to enforce a law that is so easy to violate, even children can do it.
People are not offended enough by marijuana use to have an effective law that is devoted to eliminating its use. When no less than half of the population is not offended by marijuana use there is no point in trying to make it illegal. This is true of any law. Laws need to have the cooperation of at least 80% of the population. Most compliance has to be voluntary. There are exceptions. But enforcement has to be brutal, like shooting users and dealers on sight, with no trial.
Current drug laws allow supporters to enhance their self esteem by showing their disdain for bad behavior. Organized crime gets a great deal of utility out of drug laws because high profit margins are guaranteed. The pharmaceutical industry, of course is opposed to legalizing marijuana.
I study issues thoroughly before coming up with opinions. The medicinal aspects of cannabis appear to be highly valuable. With the state of health care in disaster mode, it is wrong to deny responsible people access to natural herbs that have strong curative powers. Certainly research into medical uses should be encouraged. There are no reasons to prevent adults from trying to cure themselves with any safe herb where traditional medicine fails. As it turns out traditional medicine is failing miserably these days.
I have made some observations that some might find interesting. The people who want pot legalized the most are also the ones who are doing the most to keep it illegal. These are the stoners. They are not a sympathetic lot and engage constantly in maladaptive behavior. I took the time to study who gets arrested for drugs, where and when.
Almost never is a person arrested in his own home for indulging. This is all a matter of public record. Check the arrest records for any county that makes the information available on line. You might go blind before finding one arrest of a stoner at home. Also, it is rare for an arrest to be made for marijuana alone. The vast majority of marijuana charges are made in addition to other charges. The other charges are almost always for some kind of bad behavior like getting a DWI or committing another crime. Marijuana is almost never the original reason for arrest.
The people who want pot legalized for recreation are the ones who are providing all of the justification for keeping it illegal.
There are hundreds of laws on the books that have no utility to society. Supporting these laws makes certain folks feel morally superior. Marijuana laws fall into this category. As a retired teacher, I would certainly like to see pot kept out of the hands of kids. I would support the current law, if it was effective in doing this. I might support the law if it did any good at all.