Effects Of Marijuana Decriminalization

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Background to marijuana use
The most recent development in marijuana legalization efforts were seen in Washington DC after voters took limited steps in marijuana possession and home production. These unprecedented moves are in line with great lobbying from the pro-marijuana movement which has clearly established that the US society is mature enough to make independent choices when it comes to marijuana use. “The effects of these legal steps may take a long time to be felt but in the meantime lobbying for marijuana legalization is gradually bearing fruits as more and more states continue to adopt it” (Allen, 2015).
Since the legislation took effect, several commissions such as the Shafer Commission have been initiated to examine arguments for
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Considering the trend that states have followed in decriminalizing Marijuana, it is not possible to claim that marijuana has been legalized in any specific instance. This is because it is still criminal to possess marijuana exceeding specific amounts. For example, it is legal to possess only 1 oz of Marijuana for personal use in Vermont and any amount beyond that is illegal. Therefore, decriminalization up to a particular amount is not tantamount to legalization.
“Currently, the US Federal law prohibits Marijuana manufacture, distribution, sale and even possession of marijuana regardless of the amounts. Therefore according to the federal law, marijuana possession and use is still illegal. However, the federal law has allowed states to determine by themselves the legalization of marijuana on condition that there is adequate state authority to prevent its legislation from interfering or obstructing execution of federal duties” (Cole, 2013). It also demands state legislation to ensure that citizens enjoy public safety, public health and other benefits under federal law. The legalization should uphold the eight provisions provided for by the Attorney General’s office to prevent the law from being
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The movement for marijuana legalization cannot afford to be ignored because masses of people pushing for its legalization have acquired a massive amount of leverage in technology. Previously, it was possible to ignore marijuana protagonists by giving them media blackout or ignoring calls for legalization in different parts of the country (BOSCHERT, 2010). Today, marijuana legalization debate is all over the social media and information regarding its safety is not a preserve of the few as has been the case before. In the background of that, the federal government and the anti-marijuana campaigners have a responsibility to explain to the population with facts as to why marijuana should or should not remain illegal or in some cases why it is not decriminalized (legalization of possession not exceeding specified amounts). With many in the United States looking at Vermont, California, Colorado, and Washington, the marijuana debate should now take the forefront in government legislation and the true picture established based on survey and scientific
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