The marijuana lobby has their eyes set on Arizona. Millions of dollars are funding lobbyists and issue campaigns to legalize the marijuana in Arizona. As a result, there are many lies being spread by the marijuana lobbyists in order to deceive voters. Here are a few of those lies, and reasons to oppose the legalization of marijuana in Arizona.
Negative Effect of Marijuana on Teens and Children
Legalization of marijuana will mainly effect the younger generation in Arizona. The rate of students using marijuana daily is increasing, and is at the highest since 1980. Marijuana producers are taking advantage of this increase and are targeting young people with products like candies and snack food that are laced with THC. Marijuana producers are targeting the younger generation, with no regard for the outcomes. Education leaders in Colorado, where marijuana is legal, recently met to discuss the marijuana problem in schools. Marijuana is the No. 1 problem in Colorado schools right now. We can learn from the problems in Colorado and oppose legalizing marijuana.
Creates Bigger Government
Many proponents claim that legalizing marijuana will lessen the burden on government by eliminating the need to enforce marijuana laws. This is false. The proposed changes in Arizona will create a new state-sponsored regulatory commission, new taxes, and other regulatory laws. Legalization means more regulation and more government.
Proponents also claim that government will benefit from the tax revenues on marijuana. Data from Colorado shows that tax revenues from marijuana are extremely small. Only 0.7% of Colorado’s General Fund Revenue comes from the taxes on the drug. It is unclear if the taxes on marijuana will even pay for the new regulatory agencies that it creates, which could create a financial burden on the state.
People Are Not Going to Jail Over Marijuana
In the recent Democratic Presidential Debate, both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders claimed that people are going to jail over simple charges of possession of marijuana. Politifact, a political fact checking organization, released the following regarding Clinton’s and Sanders’ statements:
“What the figures show is that possession itself isn’t usually enough to land someone in jail. Rather, those sentenced to prison for marijuana offenses were typically found to be committing crimes more serious than just possessing marijuana (or “smoking” it, as Sanders put it). Often, this means selling it or trafficking it.
The Justice Department estimated that 3.6 percent of state inmates in 2013 had drug possession as their most serious offense. That includes possession charges for all drugs, not just marijuana”.
Actually, there are far more arrests for alcohol than marijuana in Arizona. We should be focusing on decreasing the amount of alcohol related arrests, not marijuana.
Arizonans should be outraged that the marijuana lobby is spreading such false statements in order to confuse voters. Its time for Arizona to stand up and oppose the legalization of marijuana in Arizona.