Marijuana Reform

 
 

Legalizing marijuana will boost state revenue without sacrificing public safety.

Legalizing marijuana for persons over 21 would increase state revenue, create jobs, decrease our prison population, take money out of the hands of illegal drug rings and would not sacrifice public safety in the process. YPDA Hawai‘i's Social Justice Action Committee will be working on this issue directly in 2018.

Background:

The move to legalize marijuana first gained an overwhelming amount of support when its obvious medical use and benefits became evident to the masses. There are a vast amount of reports and studies which state that marijuana is highly effective in treating a number of ailments, and it can make a highly effected replacement for numerous types of medication, many of which having various nasty side effects. Thus, its medical use must be one strong reason for the pros of legalizing weed.

Cannabis is a highly popular substance that many people consume on a regular basis. Legalizing cannabis will give these people, most of which are law abiding, hard working individuals, a place to safely buy cannabis. It also means that what is being sold is regulated, safe, and not mixed with any other nasty substances. 

When marijuana is illegal, officers are within their right to question and detain people in possession of the drug. This means a lot of police time is spent pursuing, questioning and arresting citizens due to possession and/or consumption of cannabis. Legalization will free up officers’ time to pursue more worthwhile cases. Additionally, making marijuana legal will reduce our prison population and prevent entry into the criminal justice system for a large segment of nonviolent, productive members of society.

Legalization of marijuana means that the hemp industry will be allowed to flourish. Hemp can be utilized for products such as paper, clothing, plastics, fuel and food, and many other products that can be made from hemp. On top of that, hemp plants grow very quickly (especially when compared to the trees we are cutting down to make paper), with no need for herbicides in most environments. The power of hemp is truly astonishing.

When thinking of the pros of legalizing marijuana, this one can’t be ignored. If cannabis is sold and regulated by the state, then all cannabis sales will likely be taxed. This new and highly profitable taxable substance can potentially provide a much needed boost to the economy.

Many large, illegal cannabis operations are run by gangs and cartels, who often also participate in other unlawful activities (including the sale of much more dangerous substances like crystal methamphetamine). As long as the cannabis is illegal, the illegal cannabis market is allowed to flourish. Legalizing cannabis will take money spent on the drug from the wrong hands.

Although the production, use and sale of cannabis have been prohibited, the amount of users has shown no decrease, the amount of support for legalization has shown no decrease (in fact the opposite is true), and the amount of damming evidence against marijuana has shown no increase. This clearly shows that prohibition has been ineffective.

2018 Bills We Support

TBD

Additional Resources

Marijuana Legalization and Regulation

Since marijuana legalization, highway fatalities in Colorado are at near-historic lows

Five Reasons Cops Want to Legalize Marijuana

The Economic Impact of Marijuana Legalization in Colorado

Marijuana’s $2.4 billion impact in Colorado is a lesson for 5 states considering legalization

The Economic Benefits of Legalizing Weed