Why Should Marijuana be Legalized?
As business continues to grow in the legal marijuana sector, there are many aspects to consider for why Marijuana should be legalized. The numbers keep rolling in, and you’d be hard pressed to argue the marijuana industry isn’t one of the fastest growing industries in the country. Let’s take a deeper dive into some of the reasons the federal government should look deeper into the question, “why should Marijuana be legalized?”
Let’s start with the obvious. Ever since the inception of recreational sales started back in 2012, the now 10 legal states and Washington DC have record numbers of sales and they just keep rising. California is in the lead with $2 billion in sales, and Colorado with $1.56 Billion in 2018. They’re showing the rest of the country the true potential of legal cannabis in terms of revenue gains. Yes, these numbers are impressive, but what else can this market do? More than just state revenue, we can dig deeper and see additional monetary benefits. Such as, how small towns in legal states get back on their feet, the rise in jobs and personal income, investment opportunities, and savings on medical care due to less opioid abuse.
Resurgence of small town America
It’s not just the big cities like Denver and Los Angeles reaping the rewards of this new “green rush.” A surprising amount of small towns in legal states are seeing a resurgence in revenue and bouncing back from the economic downfall in 2008. Towns in Colorado like Pueblo, Sedgwick, and Trinidad have all seen a miracle rebirth. In some cases saving the town as a whole. A reason why these towns are seeing such great results lies heavily on the geographical location; being border towns.
A Few Examples
One boarder town case in particular being Huntington, Oregon where one dispensary has more customers than they do population. many of which coming from the neighboring state of Idaho where cannabis is still illegal. Look at Pueblo, Colorado as well.
For quite some time, Pueblo has had one of the highest unemployment rates in the state, but has now seen a surge of jobs because of legalization. Whether it be jobs directly in a Pueblo dispensary, or ancillary jobs like construction, consulting, or retail hydroponic stores, etc. to support the industries growth. A stand out benefit Pueblo county is implementing is using a huge portion of sales revenue to create scholarships. They are using revenues to send high school kids to local universities. What a way to recirculate the revenue whilst helping the community!
Job and wage growth
After seeing what can happen in just the small sleepy towns of America, what do you think the job market would look like countrywide after federal legalization? After New Frontier Data took some time to look at the marijuana sector, they deduced a projected number of $86 billion in tax revenue and $253 billion in sales from 2019 to 2025. Of course this is just a prediction, but anything even close to this would be nothing short of spectacular for the countries population.
Where would these jobs come from?
The obvious being anywhere from cultivation, transportation and retail stores which are already a well established job market, but the potential for new jobs is huge. Once this market is taken more seriously, it can be seen just as any other big business opportunity creating jobs for marketing, consulting, and anything in the world of finance.
In an in-depth report done by Leafly, they have found there to be 211,000 full time jobs created nationwide in the Cannabis industry. That’s not to mention all the jobs not involved in handling the actual product, this total they estimate at 296,000 nationwide. In 2018 alone the Cannabis industry had gains of 44%!
Speaking of finance, there has already been a great opportunity for investment within legal cannabis. Look at Canada with their newly country wide legalization. Even people outside of the countries population are making a profit after investing in weed stocks. People who invested in Aurora Cannabis and Canopy Growth before the legalization are now raking it in so to speak. Although the investments are still very new and sometimes questionable, it’s just like anything new. There are going to be some lessons to learn and adjustments to make in order for the full benefits to be seen. If Canada is the guinea pig for us to watch, imagine what we can do with weed stocks here in the states! The thought of future potential is intriguing and down right exciting. Because marijuana is federally illegal, businesses can’t be traded publicly and everyone is missing out on the huge opportunity.
While there’s much debate to how extensive a roll cannabis plays in the medical world, it’s hard to completely ignore the “miracles.” Especially with CBD! CBD (or cannabidiol) is an active ingredient in the cannabis plant separate from THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). THC is responsible for the actual psychoactive “high” felt by the consumer. While both parts of the plant contain medicinal properties, CBD has seen a huge surge lately in treatments. Epilepsy is a primary ailment mentioned in research studies. Videos are all over the internet of people with this debilitating disease using CBD. Just a few liquid drops of CBD orally, and the soothing effects set in almost instantaneously. It practically ends the seizure right away.
Other ailments known to be treated by CBD oil include: alzheimer’s, parkinson’s, depression, anxiety, and joint pain. So why isn’t this miracle drug being prescribed, especially when it clearly a safe alternative to opioids? Opioids, of course, being the focal point of a huge epidemic in this country as we speak.
If we were to federally legalize cannabis, studies of this plant could be funded and the treatments would multiply. Cure for cancer? Help veterans with PTSD without the use of deadly opioids? Reduce and treat the seizures brought on by epilepsy? The list goes on and on, while we continue to deprive people of a natural, healthy alternative medicine.
I guess the question shouldn’t be “why should Marijuana be legalized,” but rather “why shouldn’t Marijuana be legalized.” There are a ton of upsides to legalizing Marijuana. Especially, when you consider there are very few negatives to the full legalization. The states who have legalized medical or recreational Marijuana have already shown us the way and proven successful. It’s just becoming harder and harder for the American people to continue believing in the fear mongering of Marijuana established in the early 1900’s and perpetuated by the movie “Reefer Madness,” in 1936. Only time will tell if the U.S. decides to embrace the healing powers of Marijuana completely