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Citizen Advocacy 101 For Marijuana Legalization: Speak Your Mind

  • by Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director May 2, 2012

    It is very hard to imagine that Cannabis Prohibition could have ever lasted as long as it has–75 years in America–if there were:

    1) The Internet…and it’s ability to allow citizens to directly communicate, sometimes en mass, at lightening speed and at little-to-no-cost (as compared to say the pre-Internet era where the capital start up costs and regulatory entanglements to reach the masses for TV, radio and newspapers were prohibitively high except for the most well-to-do).

    2) Brave and forward-looking citizens like Frank Mattioli, from western New York, posting personal videos to major media outlets like CNN, articulately and passionately advocating for major changes in America’s failed Cannabis Prohibition.

    As there is far, far more cannabis smoke in Americans’ closets these days than sex (including gay sex), the easy analogy to the gay rights movement’s success of ‘coming out of the closet’ should not be loss at all by the cannabis law reform movement.

    Currently, 50% of the US population favor legalizing cannabis (75% support medical access). These days one of the major questions asked repeatedly of NORML by reporters, columnists and editorial boards is ‘not if, but when will cannabis finally become legal in America?’

    Nate Silver at the New York Times estimates that the politically crucible number of sixty percent public support for legalizing cannabis will likely occur in the next ten years.

    I don’t see how this is not possible, certainly if more and more cannabis consumers and lovers of freedom, like Frank Mattioli, continue to speak their mind and vote their conscience.

    61 Responses to “Citizen Advocacy 101 For Marijuana Legalization: Speak Your Mind”

    1. Craig says:

      Let us all hope so! That I could be arrested for smoking a plant I grew myself is amazing!

    2. Don M says:

      For many cannabis users, it is a very difficult choice to come out of the virtual closet since it can negatively affect their lives in many ways even more serious than gays face. I, as do many of you, know many many people who secretly use but would never admit it publicly , or even consider joining or donating to NORML, out of fear of loss of their jobs, or their security clearance, or even worse, fear of going to prison.

      I believe that IF we, as a nation, could be allowed to vote on whether or not to continue this expensive totally failed prohibition, it would end very decisively! Only the fools and those greedy bastards that choose profit over morality would vote to continue prohibition. Considering how many internet blogs I’ve perused, there is no doubt in my mind that We The People want this stupid war to end.

      Yes, thanks to the power of the internet, the truth is out there and I’m very sure our so-called leaders in Washington know it. They’re not stupid. They are just extremely self-serving and care little for us.

      There is also no doubt in my mind that Obama intentionally misled us regarding his stance on this issue in order to get our vote and it really disgusts me!

    3. […] Citizen Advocacy 101 For Marijuana Legalization: Speak Your Mind It is very hard to imagine that Cannabis Prohibition could have ever lasted as long as it has–75 years in America–if there were: 1) The Internet…and it’s ability to allow citizens to directly communicate, sometimes en mass, at lightening speed and at little-to-no-cost (as compared to say the pre-Internet era where the capital start up costs and regulatory entanglements to reach the masses for TV, radio and newspapers were prohibitively high except for the most well-to-do). 2) Brave and forward-looking citizens like Frank Mattioli, from western New York, posting personal […] […]

    4. andyroo says:

      i stronhly support the side of legallizing marajuana it is a practical item that should be legalized sold and taxxed

    5. Unmentioned User says:

      I for one believe marijuana has long past been due to become relegalized. Most people forgot that not too long ago marijuana was legal. This stereotype of what a “stoner” is has completely changed from the early 1900s due to false advertisement and false assumptions. As a cannibus user, I don’t use to get “high” and to sit around all day burning brain cells. But as a utility to help bring out inner thoughts and to clear ones mind. To prepare for what today has to offer me and to focus on whatever important tasks or goals I need to complete. Although my usage is only habitual I support the medical usage as well. Marijuana, has an ample amount of usages from agriculture to clothing. We, as Americans need to take a stand for what’s right and open our eyes to the bigger picture. RE-legalizing marijuana not for the “burnout, stoners” but for the mature citizens who understand its effects and know how to control oneself in a mature manner.

    6. Zuke says:

      Only 60% in 10 years? Honestly, just from what I personally have observed, it seems like public opinion is rolling along faster than that.

      The only people I seem to run into anymore that don’t believe marijuana should be legal are old (usually 65+) people, who, strangely enough, also seem to be the only people who still refer to cannabis as ‘dope’. Anyone else who isn’t still lost in the days of reefer madness generally understands dope as a reference to heroin, or sometimes methamphetamine. Weed isn’t ‘dope’.

      But even people around my mother’s age (mid 50s) are getting into the whole legalization thing, and surprisingly enough many are even really rather zealous about it. On top of that television/media seems to be embracing legalization far more readily. Before gay rights/marriage was the issue they focused more heavily on (seriously, how many shows with fictional characters don’t have a gay dude somewhere in there?). Now justice system reform and legalization as a consequence is sneaking its way in.

      Anyways, my point is that pro-legalization sentiments seem to be spreading at a good rate (that’s why I believe there’s been the recent backlash against medical/marijuana users; those with a vested interest know full well that they’re losing their grip on people), so I think 60% in 10 years is a somewhat conservative estimate.

    7. bb54 says:

      Yes indeed It is very hard to imagine that Cannabis Prohibition could have ever lasted as long as it has–75 years in America but it is more difficult to understand that the same prohibition is still in effect despite the discovery of the human endocannabinoid system.Homo sapiens prefer fuel for your car rather than fuel for your brain.Evolution is a slow process indeed.

    8. Owen says:

      Is NORML going to post anything on the kid who was jailed and forgotton for 5 days by the DEA – over you guessed it – pot?

      http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/02/11502225-dea-apologizes-to-student-left-for-days-in-cell-with-no-food-or-water

      [Editor’s note: Thanks and NORML already did.]

    9. Denver WMD says:

      The lawful rights of all Americans needs to be respected, prohibition is not. Why haven’t we the people sued the government and won? Schedule 1 is a unlawful corrupt lie. Our US government uses it for medical purposes ,so why is this allowed? People making money on prohibition, both sides? I want to sue the federal government for their lies

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