The Ottumwa Courier

November 22, 2012

Prohibiting marijuana doesn’t work


FAIRFIELD — Dear legislators of Iowa and judges, please read this carefully:

After the last election, the number of states where medical marijuana is legal increased to 18 plus the District of Columbia. In addition, Colorado and Washington state have legalized recreational marijuana. The governors of those states realized that the prohibition of marijuana works no better than the prohibition of alcohol. It only creates a black market. Remember Al Capone?

Right now, the people who benefit financially are the drug cartels. Wouldn’t it make more sense to make it legal and let our state benefit financially by taxing it? It could be regulated a lot easier if it were out in the open. Right now, any kid can buy marijuana any time on the black market.

Wouldn’t it make more sense to regulate its production and sale? This would not increase usage — it would simply deny criminals the opportunity to profit from that usage.

Legalization of medical marijuana would greatly reduce the need for antidepressants, anti-anxiety, high blood pressure medication, pain pills, sleeping pills, etc. Think how much the state could save in Medicaid prescription costs! Think how many livers we could save from reduced alcohol and prescription medication use.

Remember, there are people in Iowa who are suffering needlessly because of misinformation and antiquated laws.

Marie Smallow