North Texas Daily

Seriously, just legalize weed already

Seriously, just legalize weed already

April 28
04:10 2016

Preston Mitchell | Staff Writer

@presto_mitch

For many Americans, whether willing to admit it or not, April 20 provided a quick glimpse into a life where marijuana was smoked liberally. For that single day, weed was passed from person to person, each inhaling the cannabis and allowing themselves to detox in the midst of tumultuous times.

Presently, this doesn’t make the beloved herb any less illegal. With the exceptions of D.C., Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Alaska, most of the states outlaw recreational weed. While they’ve begun administering low-THC marijuana as medicine, it doesn’t justify FBI stats of over 700,000 weed arrests in 2014. Worse is that 88.4 percent of those arrests led to possession charges.

Therefore, it’s best if America succumbed to something for once and just legalized weed altogether.

The greatest effects of this decriminalization are newfound opportunities for our nation to profit. Not only would a substantial amounts of people be kept out of prison if weed were legal, but tenured entrepreneurs and business newcomers would have an original market on their hands.

The beauty of ganja isn’t just its inherent high, but how conducive it actually is for mass production. Edibles, lotions and oils are only a few of  the great commodities that can be created from cannabis. Oils in particular aid people suffering from anxiety, insomnia and pain. Even though the plant still affects the mind no matter how much you spay and neuter its psychotropic components, its malleability into soaps, candles, and perfumes open more job opportunities for everyone.

Financially speaking, cannabis paraphernalia can be sold and taxed to generate revenue for each state. Look at Colorado, where people obviously buy more recreational weed than medicinal. Within its first year of legalization, Denver murders decreased by 42 percent while poverty in the whole state declined by nearly 12 percent.

Recently, the Colorado Department of Revenue tallied a total of $996,184,788 in 2015 marijuana sales. Thanks to a 15 percent excise tax on pot, Colorado was able to amass an easy $13.6 million to build schools and academic centers throughout the state.

According to professional advising firms, full legalization in all 50 states would eventually top $35 billion in earnings. The grass would certainly be greener, along with our wallets.

This is all before you take into account that, throughout history, there has never been a single recorded death directly from the use of marijuana.

Seriously, not one.

With that said, it can be well affirmed that the longtime war on marijuana is pointless. Permitting it would end tensions and make our educational and penal institutions better; all the while allowing other issues to take precedence over something that in the end is a non-issue.

It’s time to legalize.

Featured Image: Kristen Watson | Visuals Editor

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