Written by Allison Perry. Media by Tawnie Kozora.
For many years, a stigma was formed around marijuana: sellers and buyers. However, times are changing as many states across the country have legalized medical marijuana. Some have even legalized recreational marijuana. Recently, Illinois lawmakers proposed a bill to legalize recreational marijuana. The legalization of marijuana has the potential to make great changes in this country, one of those being more jobs. A group of women nicknamed “pot moms” know this first hand.
In a CBS News article, it’s reported that the women referred to as “pot moms” are licensed to sell medical marijuana in their state. Their customers struggle with depression, PTSD, insomnia, chronic pain, and more. These are problems that affect everyday lives. One pot mom told CBS News that the main reason she decided to get a license to sell medical marijuana was because it helps those with illnesses “have quality of life”.
These mom’s worry not about their own reputation, but their children’s. Because of the controversy, it’s possible that other parents won’t want their children hang around the children of these moms who sell pot (even though it is totally legal and the kids have nothing to do with it).
As I consider what these moms are doing, I wonder what the legalization of medical and recreational marijuana all across the United States could mean for our country. Law enforcement could focus on more important things such as violence, dangerous drugs like heroin (which caused about 13,000 deaths across the United States in 2015), sexual harassment, and many more offenses that are not taken as seriously as they should be. The legalization of marijuana could also mean more money for the state due to the tax money that would be added on to the cost of marijuana. Legalizing marijuana would also allow for the decriminalization of innocent people who have been sent to prison for years just for using marijuana. We still have dangerous sex offenders who have done real harm to real people. For example, Brock Turner was imprisoned for only six months or less for this crime.
Marijuana being legalized in as many states as it is, whether for medical or recreational reasons, is huge for this country. As medical marijuana becomes legal in more and more states, people dealing with awful mental and physical illnesses can find relief. As marijuana becomes taxed, the states will have more money that could go towards funding for public schools, colleges, and many more things that are not being funded the way they should be right now. As pot dispensaries open and people like the pot moms can be licensed to sell, more jobs will open for the large number of unemployed people across the United States.