When it comes to political leanings, I've defined myself as a free-thinking laissez faire capitalist. What does that all mean? It pretty much puts me inbetween parties and closest to being a Libertarian (although, I find myself less happy with their methodology.) I believe that trade is important. I value each individual state over the federal government. (We are a united 50 states but it doesn't mean we can't have different values and beliefs.) I think that government interference with trade creates a bigger federal government. With all that, I also believe in legalizing marijuana.
It might sound like this is the time for me to tell you that I grow plants, smoke up at concerts or sell the stuff. Nothing could be further from the truth. I admit that I have tried pot twice. The first time gave me a case of the giggles and a case of the munchies (which ended with me finishing 3 large Little Caesar's pizzas and curling up hoping my body would process it before I exploded.) The last time did absolutely nothing. Will I try it again, I doubt it. But I do wonder why pizza chains haven't been trying to push for legalization... I mean, they'd do huge business.
My reasons for wanting legalization are many. The 18th Amendment was a failure and America supposedly learned a valuable simple lesson from 1919 to 1933, a supply will be created if a demand is there. Simple economics really. By creating a black market for the goods, more money was diverted for other illegal uses while the government spent money on cracking down on these operations. I see the War on Drugs in the same light. This war started with the Harrison Act which only had to deal with registering people to sell, produce, import and distribute opium and cocoa leaves and their derivatives. These items were sneakily made illegal when they then decided not to register anyone. The Marijuana Tax Act would follow in the same footsteps in 1937 (only 4 years after Prohibition ended.) Anyhow, essentially one prohibition ended and another began and continues to this day. States have been trying to address these federal acts. Since 1995, 20% of the states have passed Medical Marijuana initiatives (Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.) Between 1978 and 1997, 70% of the states have passed legislation recognizing the medicinal value of marijuana.
Now, don't get me wrong. I don't want all drugs legalized. I just believe that it's hypocritical of us to keep punishing people for recreational use of something that they enjoy and has less serious effects on the body than the very legal alcohol. I personally would rather see tax revenue made from this item than spent on sustaining the status quo. (I'm not even going to go into money saved from enforcement.) But, I'd like to hear your thoughts.