Every year the United States spends billions of dollars fighting to keep marijuana off of the streets. We must ask ourselves, what is the point? The old school idea that marijuana is a gateway drug have been proven to be patently false. Marijuana has no known health consequences. So again, why do we continue to waste billions of dollars a year fighting to stop the consumption of a product that most people think should be legal? Why do we continue to throw people in jail for a victimless crime? Marijuana prohibition is an archaic law, and we must abolish it.
1. Despite various states decriminalizing marijuana in multiple ways, marijuana remains illegal from the federal perspective. The current federal law means that at any moment the federal government could initiate a series of actions that would shutter the marijuana industry in states that have legalized marijuana.
2. Marijuana decriminalization results in increased tax revenues, decreased prison costs, new economic opportunity, and some studies have identified corollary relationships between reduced opioid use/overdoses and marijuana legalization.
3. In 2010 the State of Louisiana spent over $46 million enforcing marijuana laws. Trend tracking from the time of the study indicated continued costs growth–we are paying more than ever to throw people in jail over a plant.
4. In 2016 alone, Colorado raised $200 million directly from the sell of marijuana. Furthermore, Colorado has experienced over $1 billion in new economic growth directly attributable to marijuana legalization.
5. Currently, marijuana arrest accounts for over half of all drug-related arrest in the United States. 88% of those arrests are for simple possession.
6. African Americans are over 3.7x more likely to be arrested than Caucasian Americans for marijuana-related offenses, despite equal usage rates.
1. Rob will work toward decriminalizing marijuana at the federal level.
2. Louisiana should legalize marijuana and tax it! Those new revenues should be used exclusively for educating our future leaders.
3. Legalizing marijuana will reduce the prison population and save taxpayers money while also generating new economic opportunities for our district.
4. Marijuana's medicinal properties should be studied and research-backed treatment plans implemented.
5. We should encourage the farming of hemp! Hemp has the potential for use in over 50,000 different applications! Cultivating hemp will generate an entirely new industry.