the War on Drugs has been a colossal failures where pot has been concerned, except for blowing up prison populations. Stuff is still out there, readily available, we just have a lot of folks who can't vote nowadays.
Legalize it. Clean up the trade a bit. Tax it. Be done with it. The worst I want to see concerning pot in the news, is a tax issue, or someone who is headed to jail for fraud attached to the trade. Take it out of the hands of criminals, and create new entrepreneurs. Plus, it can pave the way for hemp products that have zero to do with the drug trade, which I think actually has greater potential overall. Which we won't get to delve into, until we legalize the trade. We've wasted enough time and effort in prohibition, and we've jailed enough Americans for the stuff. It's time to try something else. Alcohol is more dangerous overall than pot, so let's treat it in the same fashion, and move the Hells on.
The sad fact is: the reason we moved to make it illegal has moved on. Hemp harvesting is not really a thing to threaten wood pulp paper--hemp being useful enough a product that the US government saved itself a crop of hemp for the military, and kept that loophole open--and now we are into an era where pot means revenue for a prison industry, and to scare middle class folks, and an excuse to bust low level street crime, and expand charges across the board. It has always been about control and market issues, but now the market is prison labor and keeping a stable population of workers IN those prisons, to keep the populations inflated for those who profit directly from the prison industry, or those who use prison labor because it's just so damn cheap. The economic reasons for keeping pot illegal are now circular and solipsistic to a degree that staggers. We jail our population now, with ready abandon, because...reasons. None of them have ever been good, and they've only gotten worse over the years, all the while, we've made penalties worse and worse, and without stemming the "scourge" of pot. Literally, I can walk into any town in the US, and I bet you within a day or so, I can have a dime bag in my pocket. Not because I'm a criminal mastermind, but because I cook for a living, and it's that readily available.
We lost this particular war a long time ago. The arguments to keep pot illegal HAVE evolved a bit. The same psychologists and experts who testified that pot made folks kill crazy later told us that pot would make our population to pacifistic to fight our wars. That was within the first 30 years of our little "experiment" with prohibition, and it's not gotten any better. It's time to just give this up, and stop wasting Sofa King much money on this--which is what actually drives the arguments to KEEP pot illegal, is because there is a LOT of cash invested in illegality, and folks hate to skew their business model, and damn public weal if that gets in the way of corporate profit, and skim from local police departments.
I've lived in states that have legalized it in various forms. Maine hasn't asploded. Colorado hasn't turned into a Hellscape. Alaska seems to be fine. Mass is looking like it's about ready to give it a go, and plenty of towns and cities have "de-emphasized" enforcement, because they're tired of the waste of resources. Amherst seems to have survived this brush with allowing criminals to go cray-cray with their weed and paraphernalia.
Let's stop wasting time and money, and instead look at using those dollars for something more useful and less damaging to our communities.