If You Think Marijuana Legalization Helps Drug Cartels, Think Again

One of the most enduring disconnects in the legalization debate is the question of what will become of those nasty drug cartels when we end marijuana prohibition. Here's how Tim Rosales of the No on Prop 19 campaign framed it in a debate with Jane Hamsher on CNN:

You would just be giving the Mexican drug cartels a platform, a legal platform, to operate from here in the United States. I don't think that's a risk that a lot of Californians, or even Americans, want to take.

I think he's right insofar as people do worry about this, and stirring up those sorts of anxieties isn't a bad strategy for legalization's opponents to embrace (particularly given how little they have to work with). But the idea itself is about as brain-dead ridiculous as can be.

Here's the thing: criminal drug organizations don't want this "legal platform" you speak of. That's not how they do business. Their product is grown by day laborers and slaves, not master cultivators. Their business strategy is characterized by assassination and bribery, not Facebook fan pages and free massage Fridays. They have no intention of paying taxes or appearing before local zoning boards, and they can't compete with American entrepreneurs who are happy to do the paperwork and can explain where their investment capital came from.

We're going to legalize pot, not thuggery. The murderers in Mexico don't possess a single skill that would give them an advantage in a regulated market. Their only asset is a willingness to break the law, and in the unlikely event that they elected to run a legal business instead, they wouldn't be criminals anymore. We will control the regulatory process and there's nothing about marijuana that invites fraud or extortion to any greater extent than every other taxable commodity on the market.

If you're still not getting this, let me put it another way: Mexican drug cartels don't sell marijuana because they're passionate about cannabis culture or botany, or because they love stacking bricks of mid-grade in the back of a pick-up truck. Absolutely the only reason they're in the marijuana business is because we gave them a monopoly on it. When we take that away from them, they will make less money and their organizations will get smaller.

Those who still can't or won't accept this are entitled to their opinions. But please allow us the courtesy of giving it a try. You had your chance to crush the cartels. Now it's our turn.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Genius post, mind if i use?

Genius post, mind if i use some of these as arguments? :) good day.

Not in the least.

If you're a blogger, then a link would be appropriate. But otherwise, it's all good.

undrgrndgirl's picture

I second that...

indeed a genius post...i too may use your arguments, and of course credit where it it due!

i wanted to give you a thumbs skyward, but i don't facebook...

It's only a genius post if

It's only a genius post if the idiots that can come up with stupidity like "the cartels are in favor of legalization" understand it, and I'm afraid any moron that believes that is too stupid to understand just how incredibly stupid they are. These people have flunked the IQ test.

Really?  People really think

Really?  People really think that?  One of the horrible truths of the "drug war" is that the front lines are not here - the front lines are in countries where our drug spending enables massive criminal cartels to terrorize the populations and corrupt and destabilize governments.  Is that not obvious?  

Touching on other issues

Rather than argue with you about where the front lines are (haven't the wars since Vietnam shown us that there are no front lines, that the battlefield is everywhere?) or even if war metaphors are appropriate, I'd like to applaud your astuteness for recognizing the effect prohibition has had on struggling populations the world over.

 

As to the other issues that legalization will impact, I am primarily thinking of immigration. Before you assume I'm one of those anti-immigrant crackpots, let me explain. One of the primary motivating factors of immigration, both legal and illegal, is lack of economic opportunities. The violence and corruption visited on developing nations by the cartels prevents economic development from both domestic and foreign investment. So, if we reduce the power of the cartels by legalizing marijuana, we are encouraging economic development and opportunities in the very countries that send us the most illegal immigrants. We are secondarily removing a prime motivation for illegal immigration.

 

Personally, I think the whole immigration issue is overblown and is being exploited by hucksters and demagogues. However, I think this is a useful argument for legalization, since many that oppose it are also the same sort to be up in arms against unauthorized immigrants. It would also highlight whether they are serious about the issues or just looking for a scapegoat. Legalization would address one of the underlying causes of their pet crisis.

Less $$ for cartels = increased violence?

I'm all for legalizing pot but I do think that taking a big chunk of the drug cartels business away from them will lead to greater drug related violence from/between cartels. Their overall revenues will decrease and the money they make from cocaine, heroin, etc will become that much more critical to their survival, possibly leading to an intensification of violence by those groups in an attempt to secure their piece of the diminished pie and protect that piece from the government. What do you think?

Even if this were true, I

Even if this were true, I think at most we'd see a short term spike in violence, then a falling away. The cartels would be unable to bribe police and governments to the extent they do now, and their safe havens would collapse.

You should read freakonomics

they touch upon this

The cartel distributorship would wither

Think again!
Marijuana is a huge part of the drug trade. There are millions (about 25) of Americans who use marijuana regularly. Much more marijuana is consumed than any other drug, no matter how expensive. Marijuana is the 'cash cow' of cartels due to the cheap production and, reduced risk of theft due to the size & weight and lack of motivation since marijuana users are not addicted. If Prohibition were ended for marijuana, cartels would die on the vine. The cartel distributorship would wither as Americans quit going to the 'pusher' where they are offered the 'other' drugs.

Brilliant, educate, educate, educate!

Now here is a guy who has done the research and Knows what he is talking about...Please talk some sense into Bishop Aggravatin Allen!!! That idiot spews more lies, and Idiocy on the news channels and no hosts call him on it. They just let him babble on and on without once asking where are the facts that support his argument. Props to Arron Houston for tactfully calling him out on two of the many falsehoods that spewed from Bishop's mouth... I would have throttled that sum bitch and called him a Liar and a Sham not fit to where the cloth right then and there. He says he is a recovered addict, I want to know did he do time and emerge an evangelical Idiot beating parishioners out there money or is he self taught??? Someone enlighten me...
 

EXACTLY

This has long been obvious to those with eyes to see (and no axes to grind). One doesn't always see it so well stated, though. I had long despaired of sane drug laws being enacted in my lifetime. Maybe I was wrong.

Re= Increased Violence

With smaller profits, there will be less incentive to commit violence, less money with which to purchase weapons from the United States, and less money to pay soldiers to use those guns to commit violence. "Starve the beast" is a great slogan; Republicans have just been applying it to the wrong thing.

Re Re: Increased Violence

The way I was thinking about it was that if pot becomes legal, each gangs ability to make money will decrease so the remaining opportunities (coke, heroin, etc) will become more valuable. The gangs may have less capital to spend on attacking other gangs and the Mexican state but the need to do so will be greater. I think that would make a gang more likely to spend more than it had been spending before out of a sense that they were fighting for their survival.  

The organizations won't necessarily get smaller

Legalization of marijuana would defund the drug cartels, but we should look to the era of alcohol prohibition and its effect on the Mafia for a possible future outcome that doesn't lead to a smaller organization. When prohibition was ended, the Mafia moved into other areas of criminal activity, and were powerful (arguably are *still* powerful) for decades. Mexican drug cartels will not necessarily go away or even diminish with the legalization of marijuana. Rather, they'll try to adapt to their changing circumstances. Look for increased numbers of kidnappings, for example.

My 2 cents.

Re: The organizations won't necessarily get smaller

Nothing they do will ever approach the profitability of selling marijuana under prohibition.

Drew B's picture

Won't ANYBODY Think of the Cartels?!

I've always found it curious that some people seem so concerned for the welfare of the cartels. It's like the prohibitionists are suddenly bleeding hearts for "how will the cartels now earn a living? Sob!"

Perhaps we should also turn this around and flat out ask the prohibitionists, "why are you so concerned about the cartel's income? Do you have a stake in their operations?" And of course many of them ARE playing both sides.

But to your point Scott, my view is they will "scatter." Some will appreciate going legit, some will not want any part of it, there could be more "loose lips sink ships" killings. Perhaps another visualization is legalization is like pressing a filter down on the whole situation.

I agree the key point is that once their underground, untrackable, income goes away, they will suffer as an illegal operation.

You would just be giving the Mexican drug cartels a platform, a legal platform, to operate from here in the United States.

This guy clearly chooses to maintain a state of ignorant denial. THEY HAVE A PLATFORM NOW. And since it's all underground we just plain don't know what's going on!

Even if they decide to stay in the marijuana businesses, at least we can observe them! Not only that, but I think it's not accurate to think everyone associated with the illegal marijuana coming from south of our border is a murderer.

It will only make our streets safer since we're taking dealing out of the hands of street gangs.

Really?

 

So these folks aren't bright enough to use millions of dollars in previously illegal drug money to set up quasi-criminal enterprises on American soil?  When you're a "legitimate businessman" ready to use illegal means (their strong suit, as the author contends) you realize a competitive advantage when the other guy's place burns down, or his key personnel fall down and hit their head a few times.

Legalization is almost certainly the lesser of two evils, but it's ridiculous to imagine that organized crime (including the cartels)  won't enter into a business with high profit margins and addicted (or at least really, really devoted) customers, as we've seen with alcohol, tobacco and gambling.  The profit margins will come from high taxes (no two dollar packs of chronic, I guarantee) and the pump will be primed.

If they are legal businesses!!

Ok great they are legal businesses.  We are not going to discriminate the legal businesses that they run.  They will pay taxes then.  Drug cartels do not only sell weed.  Inspectors can inspect the factories for other drugs.  Easy as that.  Legal businesses will have minimal violence.  They might fight over the land in Mexico to who becomes the suppliers to our country but this is a war in their country not ours.    

Good news

At least these cartels can't invent a new crime from legalization as only prohibition can do that. So they will have what they are already doing minus cannabis. Like the Chinese building anti carrier missles, we are just limiting their tactical options. For better or worse we will see what happens.

Zoom out and ask, "What motivates the prohibitionists?"

Amending the U.S. Constitution is hugely difficult. Yet with respect to alcoholic human behavior, our sacred founding document was amended twice! The lesson for everyone is clear.

Prohibitionists continue to swim against the torrential currents. Why do a minority of citizens bother to organize efforts to circumscribe human behavior? Free choice defines homo sapiens. All energy spend in going against our nature will be better invested in flowing with our tendencies.

Each commodity market is unique. Heroin and the opiates are the most troublesome. All energy and monies invested in prohibiting this behavior are better spent in buying up the bulk of the materials for storage and regulated distribution to registered addicts.

The bulk of cocaine production can also be bought up, stored, and distributed by regulated means.

Cannabis is an agricultural commodity in competition with cotton and others in the fiber markets, vegetable oil crops, but is unique in the medicinals markets. The experiment to outlaw cannabis is a serious failure and needs to be immediately terminated.

If these policies were instituted, the cartels would dissipate as spent storm clouds, and more humans would succeed in finding life, liberty, and happiness through increased awareness and robust economy.

FDR had good advice. Fear is natural and has its place in life. Living by fear is like walking backward. Ground can be achieved, but it's better to turn around and go forward.

I applaud the brave souls here that dare to face the fearsome prohibitionists. Let's show them peace, love and understanding!

A day will come when nations will learn how to leverage technology for maximal economic improvement where hope for the foreseeable generations of sons and daughters will appear the norm, the terror of these brainless times will be forgotten, but lessons second nature.

good article Scott. yeah the

good article Scott. yeah the cartels have already made a show of their efforts toward the drug war. killings and more killings. another typical fear tactic by the crazy. this is my question though. If these Letter-of-the-law freaks have to live in a world where cannabis is legal will they have the same amount of passion to follow the letter of the law? haha. i doubt it.

Who....?

Who in their right mind would think legalizing pot HELPS cartels?

IMHO if all of the crap was legalized less people would get addicted and ALL the cartels and drug lords would be out of business. You'd have zero street dealers trying to push it onto everyone to make a quick buck; not to mention in a 'free' country, the government shouldn't really have the right to tell you what you can and can't do with your own body. If someone wants to pump garbage through their veins, more power to em, they'll get it done weather you 'let' them or not.

A Dose of Reality

Time for a dose of reality folks:

The marijuana trade in California is controlled by a large number of Mexican Drug trafficking Organizations (not all with ties to drug cartels in Mexico). These DTO's are often poly-drug distributors (marijuana, cocaine, meth, heroin).  Much of the marijuana either grown in CA on our public lands or smuggled into CA is destine for markets outside of CA where it fetches a much higher price.  These DTO's could care less whether CA legalizes marijuana - it will not deter their business in the least.  Actually it will only embolden them to expand domestic production.  I suggest those think this is inaccurate, leave your computer and get into the real world and speak with those who deal with this everyday (cops and crooks) because most of these folks may as well be talking about OZ rather than CA - including Scott Morgan!

Drew B's picture

All you are really arguing

All you are really arguing for, it seems to me, is what everyone around here has been saying for a long time.

 

Re-legalize and regulate ALL drugs.

 

How's that for a dose of reality?

If California legalization is only the start they'll care plenty

Reply to 'a dose of reality' post- Prohibition has created a lot of messes, and there's only one way to start cleaning them up. Keeping weed criminal strengthens the cartels and other drug dealers and California voters have a chance soon to make history and say nope to a failed policy, and begin to replace it.

One of the benefits of cannabis legalization is that local illegal drug dealers will become more isolated in their community if marijuana users no longer need to depend on them for supplies.

Yet more responses that

Yet more responses that completely ignore reality.  Who actually believes the government control of marijuana and the added costs of regulation and taxation will hurt the blackmarket.  Good grief - the criminals are licking their chops hoping Prop 19 will pass.  The criminals, especially those who are well organized, will ALWAYS be able to under cut anything the governmental (local, state or federal) controls.  And Prop 19 is an utter mess - it is so ambiguous there will be no uniformity from one county to next.  The kind of mess created by Prop 215 - ten years later and still an utter mess!  One can argue that war is failed policy, but if we get invaded I'm guessing people will start reconsidering that notion.  By the way, we have never launched a "war on drugs."  we spend more in one month in the war effort in Iraq and Afghanistan than we do in an entire year  in the drug effort in American (and that include enforcement, prevention, and treatment combined).  The truth and reality will set you free!

Drew B's picture

Ha! Thanks for the laugh. 

Ha! Thanks for the laugh.  First, let's take a look at your last statement.  Jesus says, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.  Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free." John 8:31-32.  The Drug War, and prohibitionists DO NOT hold to the teachings of Jesus. Read this simple comparison (http://ChristiansAgainstProhibition.org/Prohibitionists_and_Abolitionists).  The Drug War desecrates the 10 Commandments (http://ChristiansAgainstProhibition.org/node/434). (I'll be updating that last one a bit more before too long.)  Jesus never taught we should so brutally mistreat others for using God's plants. But maybe you can enlighten me as to how you think Jesus is in favor of Drug War.

 

No, the Drug War and prohibitionists do not bring healing, they do not set the captives free, they do not bring things in to the light, in fact it does the opposite.  Later in that chapter is a more apt description of who that crowd serves, see John 8:38-44. http://www.BibleGateway.com/passage/?search=John%208:38-44&version=NIV

 

Again, your derision of Prop 19 and 215 are nothing but calls for complete nation-wide legalization.  Which I am all for! Congratulations for reaching that conclusion! ;-)  Now push hard for it!

 

This most certainly is a War; not only have many politicians called it that, in it's inception, but the number of prisoners taken is staggering, as is the amount of money wasted on it.  Completely wasted.  It is a blight on planet Earth, it is ruinous murder and the trampling of the Bible AND our Founding Documents to the DEA(th) degree.  I have a feeling your opinion of this war would change if someone decided to try to reduce their onerous prison sentence by trying to impugn you, and you had your house beset upon by dozens of men in black dressed in armor, shouting at you, pointing guns at you, etc…

 

I eagerly await your reply to newageblues.

"we have never launched a war on drugs"

 Well, that trillion dollars sure got spent on something. And if we haven't launched a war on drug (users) yet, we sure as hell can't afford to start now. Just in case you haven't noticed, the country's broke. Since you seem to think you're smarter than us, tell us why drug gangs will be able to compete with legal distribution channels for cannabis any better than they can do with alcohol?

Drew B - you're killing me -

Drew B - you're killing me - As if this topic isn't divisive enough you inject religion.  You pick the religion and we can discuss theology and all the religious wars, persecution, molestation, etc. until we are blue in the face.  I think you left out a few billion people in your discussion when you just mentioned "Jesus."  It's a simple process, until society decides its legal, it your chose to break the law - you will pay the price.  If you don't like it - move somewhere else.  And to dispel another myth - our prison aren't filled with drug USERS. They are not in prison for simple possession. Of 1,770,000 arrestees, only 250 were incarcerated for simple possession and that was a result of plea bargaining. (check the CASA studies) or ask anyone in law enforcement when the last time they ever knew of someone sent to prison for possession.  In CA we have Prop 36 - give drug users several bites at the apple in treatment before incarceration.

 

Newageblues - I never said I was smarter than anyone, but I would argue better informed.  the trite comparison between marijuana and alcohol in baseless.  Obviously alcohol has played a significant role in our culture from (including our corporate culture) were marijuana has not (other than the fringe).  Unless Phillip Morris and the other big tobacco companies plan to get in the marijuana business, your comparison between the two and how it will impact "drug gangs" is ridiculous.  Prop 19, just like Prop 215, will be a mess that will allow criminal organizations to thrive and exploit.  This has nothing to do with drug groups deciding to brew-up their own booze and take on Fortune 500 companies?????   Again, reality has left the room. . .

GreenDeath

You are seriously, totally (and obviously, willfully) ignorant about cannabis, cannabis use, and the results/effects of cannabis use.  Perhaps you should find a subject on which you are better informed and go comment on that.  You are so ignorant you'll only get ridiculed, here on this site, because the vast majority of commenters, here, are fully informed and very knowledgeable about everything concerning cannabis.

I forgot to include in the

I forgot to include in the tobacco portion:

For every dollar of tax revenue generate by tobacco taxes, it costs society 8 dollars on the backside.  It took us decades to navigate the health consequences of tobacco and now some people want to promote another smoking product that is more harmful (contains more tars and carcinogens that tobacco).  As the recent RAND study predicted, Prop 19 will result in a dramatic increase in the use of marijuana - and we will all be paying for that!  At least those of us who pay taxes.  We already have some bad things that are legal in our society, but that doesn't justify adding more at all our expenses.

Drew B's picture

GD or Just G Death

you're killing me - As if this topic isn't divisive enough you inject religion.

1. You are the person calling yourself "death." 

2. You are the person who tried to use a saying of Jesus to club me.

 

I am very supportive of anyone who wants to use religion to end the Drug War.  I know a Muslim man who uses ibogaine to treat opioid addictions.  He showed me a video of a Jewish guy touting the same. And so forth… Our love of God brings us together.  Prohibitionists despicable treatment of other humans, plants God put here for us, and the planet, brings us in closer alignment.

 

it your chose to break the law - you will pay the price

As I pointed out, it is prohibitionists who break The Law. And not just the law of common sense. How many generations have to go into debt due to the rabid hatred and spending of the Drug War?

 

And to dispel another myth - our prison aren't filled with drug USERS. 

Again, complete baloney. I'll leave it to others to educate you on the statistics. But there are LOTS of people who BECOME drug users in prison! Do your homework please.

 

You completely ignored newageblue's question.  You DO NOT offer even one reason, just murky fear-mongering like "mess."

 

AND you keep up the laughable notion based on the lie that prohibition itself doesn't give cartels and gangs a platform.  It's as simple as that.  End prohibition their "platform" starts to disintegrate.

 

You must try to stop clinging to your fears.  Instead of blindly repeating them like they are facts you must confront them head on, question them, this is what Howard Wooldridge did in his great piece: http://www.CitizensOpposingProhibition.org/legalize-all-drugs-use-abuse-do...   He confronts prohibitionist fears head-on.

 

Hm…you're also showing your lack of education on smoking marijuana.  Tobacco IS NOT marijuana.  Just because something is smoked does not mean it's like every other thing which can be smoked.

 

There are quite a few stories at this website, but I encourage you to also check out MPP.org and NORML.org.  If you're sincere, they should turn you completely around with regard to your fears of "smoked" marijuana.  There are a cornucopia of studies showing your fears are unfounded.  Like you said yourself, check out reality.

Obviously alcohol has played a significant role in our culture"

It's a leading cause of murder and suicide and other violence on and off the highway, including crimes against women and children, yeah you could say it plays a significant role in our culture, yeah that's one way of putting it. It needs competition from a SAFER alternative. The comparison of alcohol vs. marijuana isn't trite, it needs to be faced, it's a matter of life and death (even leaving the black market spawned violence of prohibition aside) and for some bizarre reason it's the killer drug that is legal.

 

The big tobacco companies would be more than happy to jump into a legal cannabis market if they are allowed to. Whether they are allowed to or not, I still don't understand why you think the drug gangs will be able to compete on price with legally grown marijuana sold by legal American businesspeople. How much does it cost to produce and distribute an ounce of good quality legally grown weed, isn't that the bottom line? Add in a reasonable tax and it should still be a lot cheaper than buying illegal, which will also continue to have the inconvenience of possibly getting you arrested, and more stigma than now once legal sources exist. 

Many small scale sellers of weed are selling only to be able to afford their own use, there will be many voluntary retirements, along with the involuntary ones, once they no longer have to pay an exorbitant price for their own supply.

Genius Post.

Just here to second.  Great post indeed.

Drew B's picture

 And to dispel another myth -

 

And to dispel another myth - our prison aren't filled with drug USERS. They are not in prison for simple possession. Of 1,770,000 arrestees, only 250 were incarcerated for simple possession and that was a result of plea bargaining. (check the CASA studies) or ask anyone in law enforcement when the last time they ever knew of someone sent to prison for possession.

 

I will be commenting on this  http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/law/july-dec10/pledgeheroin_08-04.html , but I gotta say, I trust the PBS News Hour far more than I trust you or CASA.  "In 2006 in Rock County, there were calls to build a new jail to house inmates, many of them drug abusers whose numbers pushed the jail to 30 percent over-capacity."

 

Prohibition is a freaking disastrous failure.  What kind of money are you making from it?  Are you a dealer? Are you on the take from the cartels?  Prohibition doesn't keep drugs out of the hands of kids, it PUTS THEM THERE!  Why Do Teens Deal Drugs?

 

One guy admits he's been a user of various drugs since 12 years old.  Didn't Paul Chabot, Drug Warrior, claim something similar, he used drugs starting around 12?  Who sells drugs to 12 year olds?! The 7-11? Sam's Club? 

I came to this Website

I came to this Website because of the above article and not because I expected to find people who oppose drugs (a lot of like-thinkers on a web with this name), but that's why they call it debate.  We wouldn't be the country we are if everyone thought the same or didn't have the ability to express their thoughts. 

 

As for the issue of drug users being incarcerated in prison i suggest you do your own research.  Contact a parole agent, correctional officer, prisoners, or anyone who has spent several years dealing with prisoners and ask them their opinion of how many prisoners they worked with who went to the Crowbar Hotel for simple drug use.  Not even in CA which has a Three Strikes law (two previous convictions for violent offense) and simply felony drug possession send them to prison.  In fact, CDC won't violate someone's parole for felony drug "posession." 

 

This is one of several topics that gets used by the folks on websites such as this who have their minds made up and look for information that can be skewed to support their position.  I defy someone to find PROOF that this subject is an actual topic that will support your cause.

 

I know, one down and many more to go - but the B.S. meter is pegged on this one! 

 

As for the belief that a legal market run by the government (with taxes and permits) will be more affordable than the black market (something that can easily be grown in your house or back yard), you should have a date with Bernie Madoff - he's looking for a few new suckers these days.  This simply defied any sense of logic.  Even many medicinal marijuana folks in CA oppose Prop 19 for this very reason! 

Drew B's picture

Thanks for Continuing to Agree with Me

Like I pointed out above, the key factor to your comments here is "legalize it, stop wasting already depleted taxpayer resources." If no one is going to prison for it, then it's nothing but a huge waste of time and resources; resources better spent in many of a multitude of other ways.

 

The price should come way down, as it should!  All those with a conflict of interest are worried about that.  They care more about money than people's lives.  As long as vendors can maintain the arbitrary and man-made hurdles which have driven the price sky high, they will act like it's some scarce resource which should be doled out and charged like saffron.

 

Speaking of Bernie Madoff, how many billions of dollars do we pour in to this Evil Religion of Hate (Drug War)?  Wouldn't society have been far better off if it had spent some of that on actually policing things that matter?!

Answer my questions, "Green Death"

 "How much does it cost to produce and distribute an ounce of good quality legally grown weed, isn't that the bottom line?" You can include a $50/oz tax in your calculation, though as awareness that cannabis is far SAFER than alcohol continues to grow, a policy of taxing cannabis so much more heavily than alcohol should become unsustainable.  And "tell us why drug gangs will be able to compete with legal distribution channels for cannabis any better than they can do with alcohol".

You've got a lot of gall calling the comparison of killer alcohol vs. calming marijuana "trite". A thorough, science based comparison of the two substances is urgently NEEDED, large numbers of lives are at stake. As is our sacred honor as a country solemnly pledged to liberty and justice for all. All means all, not just the people that you like.

Naw

The reason why we can't stop the mexican drug cartels is because dopers like you keep buying the crap.  What's needed is stepper fines and punishments so the dopers will stop buying the crap.  Look at Lohan, hell she would fit in with you dopers.

Home Grown Goodness

  Well, the Cannabis info is around for all those who really want to know, so theres really no need to argue the already stated facts. Europeans have been doing the scientific studies for us, while us Americans roll in our self-made ignorant fears of an herb. We cant even study this plant, a plant used as rope and clothing for thousands of years. 

  You can Thank Mr. Harry Anslinger, who is in a special circle in Hell right now, for filling a whole generation with fear and lies! He pretty much took away a natural resource from a WHOLE country. THAT my friends is a terrible and atrocious feat... Its really sickening when you think about it..

  Imagine for a moment... A "man" who thinks he knows better than God, decides that no one should be able to grow a plant.  So, they (the FEDS) send out the troops and pull up EVERY plant alongside roads, ditches, peoples backyards, they even comb the forests for God sake! At the end of the day, they have worked hard and destroyed millions of this "Dangerous Weed". Then they throw it all in a big pile and burn it... You think standing there they felt accomplished? Would you feel accomplished trying to eradicate a plant species? They probably kept repeating the lies in there heads. The lies that were made up to justify this atrocity. This is a plant that GOD ,who knows much better than us, gave us as a medicinal HERB. It should be respected as such.

  I think what we should all really be asking ourselves is, would Captain Planet approve?

Drug War

 

 

Were here to live free, not be judged for smoking a plant that most makes us happy or lazy and relaxed, and is generally associated with non violence, and sometimes even creativity.

 

Why have we been given the right to drink alcohol, when it can cause so much more trouble. why do poeple see it as adding to the effect instead of looking at the facts, people who drink were given their freedom, where ours, and our freedom is much more peaceful?.

 

Why are we arrested for smoking a plant when we are a working class of Americans and haven't missed a day of work?

 

Why should Americans live in fear of the drug war when the opposition will simply grow if we do nothing about it? What makes us think that by taking marijuana out of their system will let them thrive?

 

I can think of only one reason why pot is illegal.

 

DISCRIMINATION!

 

 

 

 

And fear

And fear

All drugs are the same...

I've heard the arguments for and against prohibition of marijuana. These posts are important for the debate. If anything, maybe we should give legalization with strict regulation and taxes a try. Obviously, after billions of dollars spent the drug war is not working. But we must recognize a few things;

I've heard the arguments for and against prohibition of marijuana. These posts are important for the debate. If anything, maybe we should give legalization with strict regulation and taxes a try. Obviously, after billions of dollars spent the drug war is not working. But we must also recognize a few things;

The cartels may lose some money initially, but I agree with those who state that underground criminal activity will remain unless other issues are addressed. There are many more drugs to be sold and consumed than marijuana, alcohol, and tobacco. As was witnessed by alcohol prohibition and the mafia, illegal activities within legal markets became and stil are a source of billions of dollars to organized crime syndicates.

The social costs of alcohol and tobacco should give one pause as to the benefits of legalization of marijuana. We spend billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of hours trying to enforce regulations, educate people, and prevent the use and/or abuse of tobacco and alcohol. Everyone arguing for legalization of marijuana must recognize the suffering endured by drug users and their family or friends and the complete strangers impacted by the use of these legal drugs, let alone the taxpayer whose dollars flow annually into the seemingly endless battle to pay for and/or prevent the repercussions of tobacco and alcohol use. Whether through heath care costs, law enforcement, or regulation of markets legal drugs cost billions too. I've have personally felt the emotional and health costs of both these legal drugs. Abuse will occur, and worse, simple use (as witnessed by tobacco) will lead to enduring personal and health costs. Prescription drug abuse and even the health problems caused by the "simple" use of over-the-counter drugs can serve as an example of extreme and expensive problems associated with even (supposedly) tightly regulated drug markets, these issues should be addressed in the debates of marijuana legalization too.

If medical marijuana is any indication, legalization will not simply solve the criminal and anti-social behavior of dealers/sellers and users. Millions of dollars will need to be invested in the regulation of marijuana distribution and production and huge changes will be required within the marijuana market place. Undeniable links exist between the "legal" prescription of medical marijuana and the distribution (by caregivers) of other prohibited drugs such as methamphetamines.

And last in this post (but not clearly not a conclusion to the vast arguments that must be made);

Drug use, whether it is wine, marijuana, cigarettes, meth, cocaine, or heroine should be viewed through an educational perspective as well. Barring all of the other threats to human health, can we not find a better, possibly even beneficial way to get high? Maybe, instead of lighting up the bong ya’ll should take a hike in the mountains, go for a run around the block and do some yoga. Or even better, instead of getting high from THC, alcohol, or nicotine, get a social high by serving your communities or starting a real revolution such as getting off of our addiction to capitalism and war, not a pseudo-revolution such as this, by adding one more legal and mind altering escape from reality. We have problems to solve, wake up from your drug induced coma and get sober.

Commie

Commie

FTW?

Why would anyone thing legalization would help the cartels that would be the end of them, this is why Ron Paul wants to legalize all drugs, is Heroin more harmful then legal opiates like Morphine or Oxycontin, I think not.

In 1937 America made certain drugs illegal saying they have no medical use. This is a complete falsehood and the truth is Alcohol is more harmful on the body than Cocaine or Heroin America needs to wake up legalize drugs and end cartel control of the United States.

prohabition is communism

telling me what i can and can't put in my body, Obamacare, the NDAA, wow Carl Marx would be so proud of what America is becoming....Welcome to Barack's AMEЯIЌA

Ron Paul - 2012!

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