This year’s election was one for the ages, with a huge amount of money spent, venomous insults shot back and forth, and new lows in civility and behavior.
As most Marijuana Venture readers can probably guess, my opinions were easy to predict on two of the biggest choices: I voted for Hillary Clinton, and definitely supported legalization of marijuana where it was on the ballot.
The real headscratcher for me is how any sane person could feel differently. A friend of mine sent me an email several weeks before the election that highlighted the difference between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and it went something like this: Trump’s history of anti-trust violations, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s four bankruptcies, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s refusal to release his tax returns, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s insults to women and minorities, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s history of stiffing contractors, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s past problems with racial discrimination, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s hiring of undocumented workers, and Hillary’s emails; fraud charges leveled at Trump University, and Hillary’s emails; Trump’s own words admitting to sexual assault, and Hillary’s emails. The list goes on and on. The obvious thing is that Hillary has warts, but voting for Trump because you don’t like Hillary would be like amputating your leg because you had an ingrown toenail!
To me, the marijuana issue is similar. We’ve allow booze to be sold and consumed in this country for nearly a hundred years, and during the same time spent billions of dollars fighting a ridiculous war on marijuana that has been fueled by lies, conflicts of interest and outdated thinking.
No one is going to be taken seriously by saying excessive marijuana use is good for you (unless it’s for a specific medical condition), but on the other hand, when compared to alcohol, its negative impact on society would seem to be miniscule. I see it pretty much the same as the Trump/Hillary comparison above: Alcohol causes 88,000 deaths a year in the U.S., and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol-related driving deaths in the U.S. total about 10,000 a year, and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol causes cirrhosis of the liver, and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol can lead to fetal alcohol syndrome, and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol-related brawls and violence occur every day, and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol-related rapes occur every day, and marijuana gets you buzzed; alcohol-related health problems cost the U.S. $233 billion a year, and marijuana gets you buzzed.
I’m sure you get the point.
Finally, when you add up the enormous savings from not prosecuting marijuana cases and factor in the tax revenue generated from legal pot, it’s about as much of a no-brainer — in my opinion — as voting for Clinton over Trump!
One final comment: What’s Peter Theil all about? He’s pro-marijuana, having invested about $75 million in Privateer Holdings, and he’s a gay man. But he openly supported Trump. Huh? That makes about as much sense as an African-American voting for David Duke of the KKK. How can a person with those views support a candidate who panders to Tea Party extremists, birthers and homophobes?
What was he smoking?