Get Sane, Legalize Mary Jane!

April 23, 2013
Get Sane, Legalize Mary Jane!

The tides have turned! According to a poll by the Pew Research Center, 52% of Americans now support legalizing Marijuana with only 45% of people opposing. The numbers have steadily risen since 1969 when Pew began asking and only 12% thought it should be legal with an 84% opposition.
In November 2012 Colorado and Washington passed bills to legalize the recreational use of Marijuana becoming the first two states to do so. Colorado is expected to generate $46 million in tax revenue and save nearly $12 million in law enforcement expenses. The estimated Marijuana tax revenue in its fiscal note on I-502 in year ending June 30, 2015 by the Washington State Office of Financial Management is at $434 million compared to the states Cigarette tax ($425 million in fiscal 2012) and liquor tax ($426 million in 2011) with most of the money made by Marijuana being earmarked for health related spending. A study by Mark Cooke of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Washington estimates the extra cost of a single Marijuana arrest for police, courts, prosecution, defense, jail, and supervision is at $2,881. In 2010 alone there were about 9,308 Marijuana misdemeanor cases filed along with 670 felony cases. The ACLU estimated from the year 2000 to 2010 Marijuana enforcement costs totaled $211 million.
Money not enough to change your mind? Do you still think Marijuana is just a drug that should stay illegal? What about the fact its safer than alcohol?
A 1993 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration review of the role of drug use in fatal accidents reported, “There is little if any evidence to indicate that drivers who have used Marijuana alone are any more likely to cause serious accidents than drug free drivers.” Likewise, a 2004 case control study published in the journal Accident, Analysis, and Prevention reported drivers under the influence of alcohol experienced an increased crash risk, but found, “No increased risk for road trauma for drivers exposed to Cannabis.”
Still not convinced, there’s more. A 2007 case control study published in the Canadian Journal of Public Health reviewed 10 years of US auto-fatality data and found that US drivers with blood alcohol levels of .05%- less than the legal driving limit- were three times more likely to have engaged in unsafe driving activities prior to a fatal crash as compared to individuals who tested positive for Marijuana, similar to a 2005 study from France that found drivers who tested positive for any alcohol had four times greater risk of having a fatal accident than drivers who tested positive for Marijuana.
Now its your time! If you would like your state to have some more money to spend or if you would like the luxury of recreational Marijuana give your Senator a call and let them know, let the world know, its time to act.

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