Thursday, March 31, 2005
On this day:

Marijuana and the Law - Some Facts

This article by Ethan A. Nadelmann, founder and executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, appeared in the March 12, 2004 edition of National Review magazine. (It should be noted that the Drug Policy Alliance was founded by George Soros, and it supports the complete legalization of marijuana, a position which I do not support.)

Here are a few facts that Mr. Nadelmann cites: (Nadelmann lists this Time magazine article, along with various other studies and reports, as references.)
  • According to a 2002 Time/CNN poll, 72% of Americans believe that the penalty for marijuana possession should be a fine, not incarceration. 80% support the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes.
  • "Police make about 700,000 arrests a year for marijuana offenses." 87% of those "are for nothing more than possession of small amounts."
  • "Alabama currently locks up people convicted three times of marijuana possession for 15 years to life."
  • "Foreign-born residents of the U.S. can be deported for a marijuana offense no matter how long they have lived in this country, no matter if their children are U.S. citizens, and no matter how long they have been legally employed.20 More than half the states revoke or suspend driver’s licenses of people arrested for marijuana possession even though they were not driving at the time of arrest.21 The federal Higher Education Act prohibits student loans to young people convicted of any drug offense; 22 all other criminal offenders remain eligible."
  • "Marijuana’s medical efficacy is no longer in serious dispute. Its use as a medicine dates back thousands of years. Pharmaceutical products containing marijuana’s central ingredient, THC, are legally sold in the U.S., and more are emerging."
  • "Every state ballot initiative to legalize medical marijuana has been approved, often by wide margins—in California, Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Colorado, Nevada, Maine, and Washington, D.C."