California’s experience shows that semi-legalizing marijuana isn’t the cataclysmic disaster the “War on Drugs” soldiers and supporters predicted:
California’s 17-year experience as the first state to legalize medical marijuana offers surprising lessons, experts say.
Warnings voiced against partial legalization — of civic disorder, increased lawlessness and a drastic rise in other drug use — have proved unfounded.
Instead, research suggests both that marijuana has become an alcohol substitute for younger people here and in other states that have legalized medical marijuana, and that while driving under the influence of any intoxicant is dangerous, driving after smoking marijuana is less dangerous than after drinking alcohol.
Imposing a local tax on medical marijuana, as Oakland, San Jose and other communities have done, has not pushed consumers to drug dealers as some analysts expected. Presumably that is because it is so easy to get reliable…
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