Thursday, October 28, 2010
Medical Marijuana and Beyond
Waiting for a friend at a favorite nearby happy hour I picked up a copy of the SF Weekly. Upon flipping to the back, I was shocked by what I saw. What were once mostly sex ads, drug addiction studies, and other such numbers to call in your hour of desperation had been almost entirely replaced by medical marijuana ads.
In a matter of days, the voters of California will vote on whether to legalize marijuana, which will make it legal for private citizens to grow and smoke pot in the comfort of their own homes. At present, this is still technically illegal, but the entire state has been gradually backing off of enforcement as there are much bigger fish to fry. If Proposition 19 passes, the state could regulate and tax the sale of marijuana. Seeing as it is presently our largest cash crop, the state stands to make a fair bit of green.
While there are other and maybe more important things happening on election day this year I can't help but think this issue has important implications. While there are certainly thorny issues about public health and questions about who might be allowed to sell, I am firmly in the legalization camp. Of all the evils of our government, America's war on drugs is one of the worst and most futile. While the passage of Prop 19 will not end America's war upon her own citizens and the citizens of foreign nations, it is an important first step.