Should Pot Be Legalized?

According to a CNBC story, Cannabis Entrepreneurs are the newest phenomena . . . as a point of context as to the rate of growth of this industry for every one new Starbucks franchise that opens, 5 Marijuana “franchise” licenses are granted by the government.

Of the hundreds who have so far responded to a PI Window on Business Poll, close to 92% are in favor of legalizing pot.  But is pot’s mainstream boom hurting America?

The following is a repost of the September 19th, 2010 PI Window on Business Blog

The debate regarding the legalization of Marijuana or “Pot” as it is often called has been a long standing one in which those both for and against are vociferous in expressing their position or beliefs regarding this tempest in a bottle or to use street slang- nickle bag.

Of course the basis for one’s belief seems to be the larger question, and one that is being asked with greater frequency concerning those whose ties to the alcohol industry are generating the level of increasing cynicism that is usually reserved for the powerful pharmaceutical giants.

This raises the question, is the issue one of possible ignorance which was reflected in the expressed views of Denver City Councilman Charlie Brown during a recent interview regarding that city’s decision to legalize the possession of small amounts of pot or, the voice of a self-serving alcohol industry waxing polemic in an effort to protect its turf.

Brown as you will note from the video attached to this poll took the opportunity to warn “hippies” that they shouldn’t “climb into your VW vans and bring your tied-down T-shirts,” and “flock to Denver thinking you can have a smoke-in at one of our mini beautiful parks.” How proud VW must be to have their brand seen as being synonymous with the hallucinatory pursuits of the “Dead Head” generation.

The fact remains that it has always been the MO of industry giants to capitalize on the fear and ignorance of a largely distracted and detached populace to further their cause.

While I personally neither drink nor smoke the wacky weed, or for that matter any form of vegetation, I have always found it to be a deplorable practice on the part of powerful industry lobbyists to feign self-righteous indignation while obfuscating the real motives for their actions, which usually starts and finishes with the bottom line.

This kind of duplicity makes me sick as it is tantamount to someone pushing me down, and then in front of the world offering me a helping hand to get up. If you didn’t push me down in the first place, I wouldn’t need your offer of benevolent assistance.

Let’s be clear about one thing, alcohol is a drug that does indeed alter perceptions and influences behavior . . . period.

In researching the topic of alcohol and its impact on crime statistics for my upcoming collaborative effort with TV’s Cop Doc (Dr. Richard Weinblatt) titled “Tasers, Abortions and Parenting: Behind the Curtain of Policing America,” the data offers this compelling insight into the “brown bag” tempest known as hooch:

“In the case of alcohol for example, at least 75% of the U.S. adult population are drinkers, with approximately 6% of that total being alcoholics. What is both surprising and worth noting is that reports indicate that 73% of all felonies are alcohol-related.

An even more telling statistic can be found in reports which indicate that 67% of all child-beating cases, 41% of forcible rapes, 80% of wife-battering, 72% of stabbings, and 83% of homicides occur when either the attacker or the victim, or for that matter both had been under the influence of alcohol.”

Based on the above the real question for some may very well shift from being one that asks if marijuana should be legal, to one that asks if alcohol should continue to be legal. Hmmmm, making alcohol illegal? All of a sudden I have this strange sense of deja vu. And if making alcohol illegal didn’t work out, why should we apply the same convoluted logic in terms of continuing to make Marijuana illegal?

From a parenting perspective, when my two oldest kids fight over the same toy, I usually give them the option to either share it or tell them that I will take it away, and thus end the acrimony of contention. I wonder how this approach would work with regard to the battle over turf between the alcohol-backed con and the activist-oriented for combatants?

In the meantime, remember to watch the video and cast your vote through our PI Window Poll:

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About piblogger

Author and Host of the PI Window on The World Show on Blog Talk Radio. View all posts by piblogger

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