Anna Gregoline | July 26, 2004
Have we ever discussed this issue? I searched but couldn't find anything. Do you think that medical marijuana should be allowed to be prescribed and used? What about decrimilization of marijuana?

Melissa Erin | July 26, 2004
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Steve Dunn | July 26, 2004
Free the weed!!

I don't see why marijuana should be illegal if alcohol is legal. I tend to take an absolutist position on drug legalization - at least for the sake of argument, I think we'd be better off selling cocaine and heroin over the counter. However, I can understand and appreciate the arguments of people who think the net cost to society outweighs the net gain of legalizing hard drugs.

I cannot understand and appreciate the arguments against legalizing marijuana.

Melissa, I'm not an expert on this, but I think "decriminalizing" something just means it's not a priority for the police - not that it has to be 100% legal. For example, marijuana is technically illegal in Jamaica - yes, Jamaica. The police there don't worry about it, BUT if there's a person they want to talk to or detain for some OTHER reason, the law against marijuana provides a handy excuse.

While I think the medical benefits of marijuana are important, and I appreciate the extent to which the medicinal angle has lead to greater tolerance for the drug, I do not think it is the only, or even the best reason to FREE THE WEED!!! There simply is no good, logical, consistent rationale for society to say it's OK to drink a 12-pack of PBR before a Dave Matthews concert, but not OK to suck down a couple thick bong hits.

Purely from a selfish standpoint, legalization of marijuana would be a huge shot in the arm for the economy of North Carolina. We've got all this tobacco infrastructure in place (including cigarette factories and tobacco farms) yet tobacco is a dying industry. Weed is already North Carolina's #1 cash crop, and it's all under the table, tax free. Legalization would give farmers something to grow, factories something to make, and allow the state to capture some of the huge revenue we're already generating.


(I guess I feel strongly about this one...)

Anna Gregoline | July 27, 2004
Yes, decrimilization means that if you were caught with a little bit of weed, you wouldn't go to jail for years like you can now. You would be let go, or fined, possibly. If you have large amounts, you could be jailed, etc. The rules are up for debate, because we don't have them in place. But you get the idea.

I think for sure it should be decriminalized. I always feel sad when I hear about police raids on marijuana farms and such, because there are so many worse drugs out there they could be spending time on. Who would you rather the police raid, a heroin dealer or a marijuana dealer? Who would you rather your children come into contact, although I'd prefer of course my children wouldn't do drugs?

It just doesn't make sense. And the new marijuana ads are the most ridiculous of all. They say, "One of the drugs in his system (at the time of the crazy-ass accident) was marijuana." What do you want to bet the overwhelming drug in their system was ALCOHOL?

Alcohol causes more deaths and injuries than marijuana any day. Our culture is weird.

Robert Phillips | July 27, 2004
Decriminilize drugs in general. It is still possible to stigmatize use, but not put poor crack head mothers in jail where their children will grow up more traumatized than they already are. More than likely growing up to commit prodigous amounts of crime thus costing the public much more than providing some sort of public treatment programs. Jail is not a treatment program.

Scott Hardie | July 28, 2004
Agreed all around. Decriminalizing it would lead to a brief surge in popularity (unless it was a gradual legalization process), then it would even out at slightly more popular than it is now. In other words, people wouldn't be smoking pot on every street corner, and the ridiculously strict rules currently being placed on cigarette-smoking in public would apply just as strenuously to pot-smoking in public, I'm sure.

Lori Lancaster | July 28, 2004
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Anna Gregoline | July 28, 2004
I thought I read that somewhere too. They did grow it for World War II, didn't they?

John Viola | August 9, 2004
Legalize drugs. Teach responsible use. Create age restrictions.

Making it morally reprehensible (which I feel the 'Don't Do Drugs' campaigns do) shows how deep-rooted religious control is in human society. There are societies where drug use is legal. We can study them and attempt to learn from what seems to work and what doesn't; what issues they deal with, etc.

Anna Gregoline | August 9, 2004
I don't think that kind of practical application will happen in our society.

"Mmm, drugs are bad, mmmkay?"

John Viola | August 9, 2004
Anna, I thought about quoting my favorite South Park counselor in my previous post. :-D

I agree that my thoughts aren't likely to happen, but you asked us for our thoughts - not what is most likely to happen. :-p~~~~

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