War on pot a failure

 

Re Fred Grimm’s Nov. 9 column, Florida GOP fights yesterday’s war on pot: The days when politicians can get away with confusing the drug war’s tremendous collateral damage with a comparatively harmless plant are coming to an end. If the goal of marijuana prohibition is to subsidize violent drug cartels, prohibition is a grand success. If the goal is to deter use, marijuana prohibition is a catastrophic failure.

The United States has double the rate of marijuana use as that of the Netherlands, where marijuana is legal. Turning into criminals those Americans who prefer marijuana to martinis has no basis in science. The war on marijuana consumers is a failed cultural inquisition, not an evidence-based public health campaign. Not just in Washington and Colorado but throughout the nation, it’s time to stop the pointless arrests and instead tax legal marijuana.

Robert Sharpe, policy analyst, Common Sense for Drug Policy, Washington, D.C.

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