by Justin Kander,
The Prohibition of cannabis has caused more problems than cannabis ever has. Because of it, millions of lives have been ruined, and everybody has had to pay the price.
There are tons of reasons why the cannabis plant should be made legal again. I say again because for the vast, vast majority of human history, not only was cannabis not prohibited, but it was widely utilized and respected. In 1619, it was illegal NOT to grow cannabis, because it was in such high demand that the government had to force people to grow it. Due to mass ignorane, misinformation, and lies, cannabis has become something that many people actually see as a bad thing. In reality, it is an incredibly useful resource that can be used to overcome many of the problems that humanity faces.
For now, I will focus on the harms that are caused only by Prohibition of smokable, THC-filled cannabis, not industrial hemp (although the latter is a travesty in itself). As of now, in the majority of states, if a police officer finds you in possession of any amount of cannabis, you will be arrested, one of the worst experiences anyone can undergo. You will need to pay at least $1,000 for a lawyer. Then you will need to go to court, where you will be put on probation from six months to a year. You may need to take off work to see your probation officer, and you will need to pay for the drug tests they issue you, as well as any drug classes you are required to take. How come people who are found in possession of alcohol do not have to do the same thing? Alcohol is literally infinitely more dangerous than cannabis, and is so destructive that it is present in over 30% of violent crime. Yet if somebody is found using a completely safe substance, instead of something that can destroy their life, then they in turn have their life destroyed anyway.
How can anybody stand for this kind of treatment of our citizens? I personally know many people whose lives have been greatly hurt by cannabis prohibition, including my own. The damage is horrible and prolonged. For what? For smoking a plant that can save the world and alleviate the suffering of millions. If that is not insantiy, I don’t know what is.
By legalizing cannabis, we would save all these people who are currently in pain because of Prohibition. We would enjoy billions of dollars in tax revenue, and billions in law enforcement savings. Drug cartels would lose 60% of their revenue. Although I believe all drugs should be legalized, if cannabis alone was, and police were able to focus only on harder drugs, that would be pretty close to an ideal world.