100+ Professors Agree, It’s Time to Legalize Marijuana

NORML is reposting this message on behalf of our allies at The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol:

More than 100 members of the academic community from across Colorado and throughout the nation have signed on to the following letter endorsing Amendment 64. These college professors represent various fields of study, including economics, law, and public health, among others, and they all agree: marijuana prohibition has failed, and the initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol in Colorado presents a sensible alternative.

Please read the letter below and check out the impressive list of signatories here.

To the Voters of Colorado:

As professors in the fields of law, health, economics, and criminal justice, among others, we write this open letter to encourage a sensible, evidence-based approach to marijuana policy, and to endorse Amendment 64, the initiative on this year’s ballot to regulate marijuana like alcohol in Colorado.

For decades, our country has pursued a policy of marijuana prohibition that has been just as ineffective and wasteful as alcohol prohibition. We have reviewed Amendment 64 and concluded that it presents an effective, responsible, and much-needed new approach for Colorado and the nation.

Marijuana prohibition has proven to be the worst possible system when it comes to protecting teens, driving marijuana into the underground market where proof of age is not required and where other illegal products might be available. In a regulated system, marijuana sales will be taken off the streets and put behind a counter where age restrictions are strictly enforced. There is evidence that regulating marijuana works. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, marijuana use among Colorado high school students declined from 2009 to 2011, the time during which the state began regulating medical marijuana sale. Meanwhile, it increased nationwide, where no such regulations were implemented.

Given our current economic climate, we must evaluate the efficacy of expensive government programs and make responsible decisions about the use of state resources. Enforcing marijuana prohibition is wasting our state’s limited criminal justice resources and eroding respect for the law. Our communities would be better served if the resources we currently spend to investigate, arrest, and prosecute people for marijuana offenses each year were redirected to focus on violent and otherwise harmful crimes. According to the Colorado Center on Law and Policy, passage of Amendment 64 would immediately save local and state law enforcement officials more than $12 million per year, and it could save more than $36 million per year within the first five years. Paired with new state and local revenues, the initiative has the potential to generate more than $120 million per year for Colorado and its localities.

It is also important to note that Amendment 64 does not change existing laws regarding driving under the influence of marijuana, and it allows employers to maintain all of their current employment and drug-testing policies.

The State of Colorado, as well as our nation, have successfully walked the path from prohibition to regulation in the past. Eighty years ago, Colorado voters approved a ballot initiative to repeal alcohol prohibition at the state level, which was followed by repeal at the federal level. This year, we have the opportunity to do the same thing with marijuana and once again lead the nation toward more sensible, evidence-based laws and policies.

Please join us in supporting Amendment 64, the initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol.

Click here to read the full list of professors who have signed on. You can learn more about Amendment 64 and the campaign to legalize marijuana in Colorado by visiting the campaign’s website here or by staying up to date with Colorado NORML here.

34 thoughts

  1. As a person who comes from a family of professors and teachers after 19 years of smoking and research I have concluded that the illegalization of marijuana only acts as a tool to benefit drug lords. In a sense by a means of outlawing it its turned into a gateway drug and a gateway to criminal activity. It acts as the perfect lube to get a law abiding citizen to break the law in that its totally safe yet illegal. When one finds this out and smokes it only to see there’s nothing wrong with it they have a greater tendancy to question other laws which are substantial or use other substances which are harming and set them down a dangerous path. This effect is very real and im sure many of us are aware of it and im sure if they legalized cannabis people would stop short of breaking the law and doing other things because a sensible law is more encouraging to follow and so if people where legally smoking cannabis and someone came along and offered cocaine its a whole extra effort to want to partake in that not only will you be breaking the law but there’s no justification in consuming plant matter mixed with gasoline therefore not as many people will take that step therefore not as many life customers for drug lords. Im sure just about any long time pot smoker like myself would agree

  2. Listen to the smart people. Legalize it! And take a few puffs of nug to the head. ‘Nuff said =o~~~====

  3. I mean this just shows again the common sense that comes with legalizing medical marijuana having it regulated and off the black market will help the image it already has as a “gateway” drug which it is not! The simple fact that teen smokers consumption of marijuana was on the decrease in Colorado while dispensaries where in operation.

  4. Great article, but the federal government have granted the power and the funds to the DEA to defy the states polices and their rights.
    They will start with major cities by having the city council members surrender their police force to work with the DEA.

    Obama has a sever mental block on any possibility of cannabis legalization. The same thing with Mitt Romney; he uses Paul Ryan to get votes, and have the loud ostentatious Chris Cristie claiming that he could fix everything including the economy.

    There may be some worthless tokens left by both parties to keep us happily confused with no rights.

    Whoever you decide, VOTE!

  5. Conservatives, especially those of the Republican type, despise professors. They are considered part of the liberal left, part of the problem in this country because they are indoctrinating and brainwashing the youth into becoming liberals and lefties. That’s what I’ve been told multiple times…by different people who don’t know each other and on separate occasions.

    Obama fits into that group, as well as other groups that the fundamentalist conservatives despise.

    It’s pure foolishness to think that the Republicans will do anything but dismiss their findings outright.

    Keep running the economy into the ground until cannabis is legalized. The only way they will legalize cannabis is if they have no other choice. If they don’t change the law &/or policy at least to prevent the feds from interfering in MMJ states even after the sequestration cuts that are to go into effect in 2013, keep running the world economy into the ground. If they make the sequestration cuts and get the feds out of the MMJ states’ hair, then the healing can beginning–socially and economically. Too many people have are dying and suffering because of cannabis prohibition. It’s more than just Mexico. Keep running the economy into the ground until cannabis is legal.

  6. if you think booting obama out of office will help the cause for legal cannabis….romney is worse yet..i understand romney will fight against the medical side of it let alone legalization…its a bigger picture than that people!!….open your eyes to an incredibly corrupt u.s. government…..suprise!

  7. One can only hope that intelligent minds will eventually prevail over ignorant ones. It is sad that so many ignorant ones have managed to gain so much power…

  8. The people who are against legalizing marijuana must be stoned. Seriously high. How else to explain their insanity?

    American Karma – Twilight of the Marijuana Gods

  9. It sounds to me like amendment 64 will still have the capability to ruin otherwise perfectly rosy give citizens with same drug testing polcies. Better get that changed or nothing really has changed and corporate America will have it’s way. Male companies test for intoxication not use it is very important for this to happen.

  10. You need a good supporting? I,ll join in with you guys.
    I want Obama out of office January 1st.
    I don,t care about him ,Romney? is ignorant too.
    I also don,t want Romney be a in office he no good.
    He not intersting legalize marijuana.
    My gosh let do something coming this election.
    Again I,ll will supporting amendment 64 to regulate marijuana like alcohol.
    I agree with you.

  11. Ohio I am
    August 28, 2012 at 5:10 pm
    Hey Obama do you see the science now
    You might just lose this election just by your stance on cannibis.

    Are you serious? Who Else is running? Johnson who has had less media exposure than Ron Paul. The worst of all? Romney…that sad sack laughed right in the face of a paraplegic medical marijuana patients face:

    Man in wheelchair: “My question to you is, will you arrest me and my doctors if I get medical marijuana?”

    Romney: “I’m not in favor of medical marijuana.”

    There’s a video showing him laughing at the the guy during this. I’d link it but I don’t think linking is allowed…Obama is a turn coat on the cause but at least he’s “experienced” from being a complete stoner for recreational purposes. Cannabis doesn’t compute with Romney the Robot; he hears Cannabis and starts failing those robot arms “Danger Will Robinson! Danger!” Yeah man he’d toooatally be on board with legalization.

  12. All right, US Govt… you called down the thunder, well now you’ve got it! You see that?

    Only a matter of time till your corruption crumbles down upon your greed.

    Only a matter of time. It’s in plain view, that you, the US govt is so corrupt, so transparent.

  13. Oracle, the only Republicans that will bother arguing with the profs are the retarded pundits like Rush Limbaugh. Of course, those will also be the only Republicans that get air time. If you’re smart and not towing the “party line” the media passes right by you.

    “Brenda: Oh please. The press only wanna interview the most ignorant person they find.”

  14. The only person who has done a great speech at the RNC was Paul Ryan and he is not running for president. Everyone else sucked.

    I can almost understand the madness of it all.

    Next will be the DNC.

  15. The United States Constitution seems to be so much of a burden to the federal government’s ambition. Make it your Business.
    It time to audit the fed!

  16. Pay close attention to the lyrics. We are still living in this Perilous Nation.

    Yes, the Time has been Coming for a very long time now. Circa 1989.

  17. We need hemp too lets not forget this wonderful plant and its thousands of uses. The prohabition on marijuana has cost our farmers and factories 80 years in lost research and development, it could by now be the greatest boi-fuels or cancer fighting drug source, this lost time can’t be replaced. We need to support of actors, entertainers, farmers and churches.

  18. You are all fools.

    This has never been about drugs or crime or society.

    This has been about prison labor and jobs created by the system and a police force that is a tool of the state, that has a constant reason for bigger and badder guns, budgets, helicopters, drones, dogs, patrol cars, etc.

    They are there to do 2 things: Protect the law, and protect themselves. period. and they have not cared for 4 decades about all the fucked up ness. they have slept in peace. all of them. being nuts and bolts of a new slavery machine.

  19. Azna Om
    We’re already winning the war on drugs. This will be a major stepping stoned to get cannabis legal – Legal pot in Colorado. Never quit. They WILL give. It’s 420

  20. Both parties play for the same team. Protect big pharm and their profits , and in return, line their own pockets.

    I’m going to grow and consume and don’t care what the govt. says.

  21. This is good to see states trying to legalize weed. Such actions show a proper understanding of the Constitution, it is a 10th Amendment issue all the way, it’s about the individual states exerting their rights. For far too long, the federal government has unlawfully usurped power in areas where it had none to begin with, one of those areas being hemp and marijuana. The war on drugs is a failure it has never worked and it never will. Personally, I quit smoking weed about four years ago, but I have nothing against those who wish to do so, people are adults and should have the choice of what and what not to do, including sins and vices such as weed, tobacoo, and booze. As a Christian, I believe that substance abuse is sinful, but as a libertarian, I don’t believe it is the role of government to police people’s sins and vices. I must add as well, there is nothing sinful about commercialized hemp use, nor is use of marijuana for medical purposes. If people want to get stoned, I don’t care, it’s their sin, not mine, and as long as they don’t bother me I don’t care what they do on their own time in the privacy of their own home. Most reasonable people, if you asked them, would not want to see tobacco and liquor made illegal, because doing so would create a black market and would increase crime and violence. Prohibition of alcohol in the 1920’s and 30′ did not work, and it would be no different with marijuana. So yes, legalize weed everywhere!

  22. Obbummer is too busy running America into poverty.
    He lies and Patients Die.
    Good news that Change is coming in November Election.
    Middle America will bring this country back, not a pro food stamp schmuck
    He will come January 2013 be one of da many unemployed.

  23. as a pot smoker i am tired of being scared. the doctor can perscribe me drugs for depression but i already know what drugs make me happy. Anti-depressants make me feel like shit but i’ve tried them because they are legal. all drugs can be harmful (alcohol), at least let me pick my own posion. drug dealers are scary and cops are scary, but the local bartender is very friendly. The NORML movement is for freedom of one’s body. the same freedom as being pro choice and gays marrige.

  24. Plz free marijuana… It doesn’t make sense why is marijuana illegal… Thou in south africa police commission semi legalized marijuana on 17 September 2012

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