Majority of Americans Favor Marijuana Legalization

Jessica Shawcroft
The Paw Print

For the first time ever, the majority of Americans say they favor legalizing marijuana, as recreational and medical use of the drug gains acceptance across the nation. The poll found that 58 percent of those surveyed favored marijuana legalization, up from 50 percent two years ago. That’s a huge raise in just two years! However, in 1969 only 12 percent favored allowing the drug, which is an even bigger jump in just forty four years.
The poll, featuring a random sample of 1,028 adults living in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, found support for legalization was strongest in 18- to 29- year olds, and 67 percent were in favor. I want to know more about the older range they supplemented recently. Before the legalization among Americans aged 30 to 49 years remained high at 62 percent against legalization. Those aged 65 and older are clearly opposed to legalizing pot, by 53 percent.
So far, Washington state and Colorado are the first two states to legalize marijuana for recreational adult use by approving separate ballot measures in November 2012. Some 20 states allow pot to be used for medical purposes.
The study adds, “Whatever the reasons for America’s greater acceptance of marijuana, it is likely that this momentum will spur further legalization efforts across the United States.” The study also found that support for legalization was driven by independents, 62 percent of whom now favor legalization, compared with 50 percent in November 2012. Democrats were for legalization at 65 percent, compared to Republicans who ranked at 35 percent.
Many say legalizing marijuana will help taxing and regulating the drug and can be financially beneficial to the states and municipalities. Those opposed to legalizing marijuana cited health risks, including an increased heart rate and respiratory and memory problems.
I believe health risks need to be brought up and considered when thinking of legalizing marijuana, what will we be looking at a few years down the road. Many say marijuana is a gateway drug; I’m surprised this wasn’t brought up in the survey or as a concern of those opposed to the drug. I, for one, am not interested in marijuana; I don’t partake and won’t ever partake. I feel the survey results were skewed and only surveying 1,028 people isn’t enough to be accurate. I think another survey needs to follow, addressing more people, more cities and ignoring Colorado and Washington, as they’ve already legalized it.
Another thing I note is the surveys we do in schools. I remember having to take a survey about if I did drugs, if I drank, and if I was sexually active when I was in high school. The tests weren’t usually taken seriously but I’d be interested to see if the results go up for students who have partaken in drugs than in previous years. The access of the drug is more pronounced, so students will be able to find marijuana easier than previous years. is powered by WordPress µ | Spam prevention powered by Akismet