Dennis Prager on Legalizing Marijuana

I’m in complete agreement with him here.

In a recent USC/LA Times poll, 303 registered California voters were asked three questions about the potential legalization of marijuana in their state.

Q1: As you may know, state voters will be asked to vote this fall on a measure that would allow people who are 21 years old or older to possess, cultivate or transport marijuana for personal use and allow local governments to regulate and tax marijuana consumption. Based on what you know about this measure, do you favor or oppose it?

A. Total favor: 49%, Total oppose: 41%

Q2: Now let me read you two statements some people might make about potential revenues generated from a tax on marijuana.

Some people say that legalizing marijuana and allowing local and state government to tax it could generate more than one billion dollars a year in additional revenue for state and local governments.

Other people say that the estimates of how much revenue can be generated by taxing marijuana use are wildly exaggerated and that state and local governments will not gain much in the long run.

People who agree with statement 1: 42%

People who agree with statement 2: 38%

Q3. In your own opinion, do you think that legalizing marijuana usage for people 21 years and older would worsen social problems including increased crime and marijuana use by teenagers?

A. Yes: 46%, No: 48%

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3 Responses to Dennis Prager on Legalizing Marijuana

  1. Bill says:

    Nobody is arguing organized crime is going to drop. What they are arguing is that crime will decrease… which it will. Consider prohibition: we outlawed alcohol, and bootleggers and gangsters had a heyday providing it. Remember Al Capone? His gang, and many others, profited immensely off of a dry America.

    I worry that there will be increased marijuana usage by teenagers, but I don’t see it as any greater of a threat than cigarettes or alcohol.

    Dennis Prager may hate marijuana, but his view on keeping it banned is inconsistent with his view of government. Government should allow the people to do what they please, yes? People should be allowed to smoke a bud and drink a Bud Light at the same time, yes? What is it of Prager or the government’s business? I could see if he had a notion that it would increase crime, but it hasn’t — ever since Seattle PD made it their lowest priority, crime has dropped. And if that is really his worry, why doesn’t he reinstate prohibition, as well?

    I don’t smoke weed, although I have friends that do. Legalization won’t affect me… unless they tax it but I have a hard time believing they will, especially given the current climate. Yet, I have a hard time seeing the point of keeping it a banned substance.

    • Nick says:

      Prager’s not a Libertarian, and neither am I. We don’t believe that the government should *always* allow people to do what they want, especially if what they’re doing harms themselves or others.

      And wait, crime has dropped because the Seattle PD has made busting marijuana users their lowest priority? How can you definitively say the two are related? Do you have data to back that up?

      I have a huge problem with legalization, because I don’t want the government endorsing something that alters your mind and makes you lazy. And no, you can’t make the comparison to alcohol, b/c one beer won’t negatively affect you. One joint will.

      And btw, Washington State is the second highest producer of Marijuana in the United States, behind California. Illegal immigrants are growing it like crazy in this state, and nothing is being done to stop them. Legalizing marijuana, as Prager said, will not stop these people from producing it, and THAT should be the goal. I would argue that crime may INCREASE if marijuana were legalized b/c these cartels may commit crimes against the growers (whoever they may be) and intimidate them into not growing their own marijuana. That’s an easily conceivable thing to see happening b/c organized crime never gives up their quest for more and more $$.

    • DCG says:

      So crime will decrease if it is legal? What’s your proof that crimes committed w/guns have decreased since you have to have a permit/license for one? Where’s the SPD stats to back up your statement?

      Government should allow me to “do as I please”? 1) Some restrictions are required for a civil society and 2) then why is the govt mandating that I purchase a commodity from a private company (HCR)? Seems that the govt’s determining what is my right to “do as I please”…

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