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CU - Bloomsburg Opinion and Editorial

Marijuana: Harmless but hated

This article does not reflect the opinion of BU Now, or our staff:

Over the years recreational drug use in America has been frowned upon by many outfits and constituents of people. Whether it is the baby boomers or senior citizens who could benefit from the advantages of pot, the older groups of people in America are probably the ones who could use it most. Facts aside, marijuana holds a strong following of people and those followers could boost this Nations economy and quality of life greatly.

With more than 5% of the population (25 million Americans) taking part in puffing some cannabis on a daily basis, and with another 5 million new users giving the cash crop a shot each year, people will be exposed to marijuana at some point, whether they want to or not.  With that being said, police still find joy in arresting kids and adults for holding small amounts of the drug around the nation.  California, or heaven on earth as some people like to call it, has saved over 50 billion dollars in taxpayers’ money by not convicting users of having less than one ounce of the drug in personal possession since the legalization. With 12 states in America decriminalizing marijuana since 1973, imagine how much money would have been saved if they chose the same path as California. Say each state were to do the same (population figures aside), more than 1 billion dollars per year per state would be going back into the pockets of consumers, cutting out the costs for jail time for heavy offenders and saving money and time in the justice system for other heinous acts. This would be an effective way of juicing up the economy. The housing market would perhaps not be in the doldrums, senators wouldn’t be screaming in housing proceedings at Obama, and Wall Street and the financial system would be receiving more money from a completely new market. Meanwhile, the government would love a taste of the market along with some more green from the people.

Predictions aside, the prohibition of marijuana should stop.  The government should allow this multi-billion dollar industry to flourish and become one of the focal points in American lifestyle, considering tobacco and alcohol have gorilla grips on their respective markets.  Take alcohol, hogging the TV advertisement scene, killing more than 100,000 per year, and costing the government $58 billion dollars for underage bookings. Marijuana is simply the opposite. Now take Tobacco, which kills 435,000 a year and hogs the print advertisement scene since tobacco TV ads are no longer legal.  When it’s all said and done, approximately 535,000 deaths per year are caused by first hand use of items sold on shelves in thousands of stores around the nation, while this illegal drug called marijuana causes 0 deaths per year. But, drug dealers and idiots alike may die from the inglorious dealings of such a valuable plant, valued at 2,000 per lb. If the government stepped in and took care of the logistics of the market, those deaths that follow the ugly drug dealing scene would soon dissipate and create jobs such as shipping, retail, agriculture, chemistry (enhancement purposes only), government and independent business owners as well. In Canada ‘reported’ marijuana exports to America alone amounted to $3.8 billion in 2009.  In California alone $8-13 billion dollars per year for the state would be raised for spinoff industries like coffee houses, industrial hemp and so on.  Coagulate the numbers of California: 36,756,666 million people, with the rest of the nation: 281,421,906 and the cash figures would simply skyrocket, or get ‘high.’ No pun intended.

Though it would be a legislative nightmare and chaotic judicial proceedings circus, if we want our country to withstand another recession, or withstand the test of time, Legalize it.

All figures and statistics were found on www.norml.org, a website dedicated to with working to reform marijuana laws.


  1. I agree. At this point in time marijuana is such a prevalent substance that there is no possible way that prohibitionists could even make a noticeable dent in the amount available or the rate of use.

    Legalization is really the only option.

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