Why is the Federal government against the personal use of Marijuana?

I’ve never quite understood why the Federal government is so vehemently against the use of Marijuana.

The DEA (:rolleyes:) states that it determines the harm of a specific substance before stating the legality of such substance.

Most of us know the effects of Marijuana are relatively benign compared to the legal substances.

What bothers me even more that even in states were the majority of the population is for the use of Medical Marijuana politicians are still against its use.

Isn’t the purpose of the government, in part, to reflect the wishes of the majority of the population?

When will the Federal government, if ever, legalize Marijuana and why is it so stubborn in allowing personal use?

Any thoughts on this issue?

Because it makes the negros go crazy.

Because it’s still political suicide to say you’re for legalization and because the pharmaceutical companies can’t control the prouction of it.

It is possible for a member of the general public to support the legalization of medical marijuana without considering the logistics of implementation. A politician would be expected to adopt a position that considers those logistics and is consistent with the (probably still majority of voting) population that doesn’t support legalization of non-medical marijuana use. As a member of the general public it’s OK to say “I support legalization of medical marijuana use, someone else can take care of the details of limiting it to only medical use.” You would be less likely to have a majority in support of a specific implementation plan. For example, of those in support, how many would support having it grown, stored, or sold in their neighborhood? Sure, some would be all for it, but when it came down to cases others really wouldn’t.

Because there are currently no major U.S. businesses making hundreds of millions of dollars off of it. See: Prohibition.

California has implemented it, and the logistics are working out just fine, but the Feds still threaten doctors prescribing it. Obviously there are some people who gasp abuse the system, but there is enough illegal marijuana growing to make it clear that that isn’t the simple method.

I haven’t ever seen a poll in California about support of decriminalization - it doesn’t seem to be an issue at all.

A better question would be: why does the federal government believe it can control in-state marijuana?

I think pot ought to be illegal.

But I think it’s a matter for state law, not federal law. What portion of the Constitution gives the feds the authority to control marijuana grown in-state for use in-state?

I find this a really interesting question. IMHO the only reason alcohol and tobacco are legal are not because they’ve been found to be harmless but just because of the overwhelming demand of the public to have them, which doesn’t exist at the same level for marijuana. I have not studied Prohibition and so don’t know the reasons that it failed though I would guess that it’s hard to enforce a law that the majority of the population is breaking. And also I don’t know the motivations behind it but I think it was more related to a puritanical morality position rather than as a public health issue.

Similarly, marijuana is seen by some as a morality issue, even as they sit and sip their Jim Beam and puff on their Chesterfields. Marijuana is still associated with a counterculture that threatens conservative lifestyles.

Aside from the perceptual issues, I would be interested in more backup on the statement that “…the effects of Marijuana are relatively benign compared to the legal substances.” I don’t think you have physical addiction like you do with nicotine and alcoholism, but it is habit-forming and the short-term effects are certainly as potent. The long-term effects are harmful as well. Since the OP is criticizing the government, this citemight be discarded out of hand. I don’t think it’s necessarily any worse, but neither is it relatively benign, especially if abused to the same extent.

I think it is because they dont want to seem like Hippocrates by finally legalizing it so they keep is illegal. It should be legal

Hippocrates was a stoner. No doubt.

My point was about why a politician wouldn’t take a poll showing majority support for medical marjuana use as a mandate to make it happen.

And Voyager’s statement that the logistics are working fine in California is not everyone’s opinion. This LA Times article is a depiction of some concerns: http://articles.latimes.com/2008/may/31/local/me-pot31

It includes this quote from the founder of a medical marijuana cooperative “THC founder Dennis Turner said that many residential growing operations amount to “full-on crime” and that he would welcome more regulation for dispensaries, particularly to protect marijuana quality. “There are holes in this [Proposition 215] like a piece of Swiss cheese,” he said.”

Really, is there *any *government program that doesn’t have people criticizing the logistics? There are lots of policies that would be great to have if it were easy to enforce them fairly.

Prohibition just does not work. You can get crack, weed, heroine or meth in any town in America. You can not stop it. We are however making some criminal types wealthy. They avoid taxes and are deep into violently keeping their markets. Of course the user has to knock off party stores or rob houses to pay for it. Yep ,they thought this out thoroughly before they banned drugs.

Now, this may actually get to the point: obviously part of the reason marijuana is illegal is that many lawmakers agree with you. But why do you, personally, think pot should be illegal?

I don’t remember the specifics but in a college class we were told that there was lobbying (to make pot illegal) from groups representing former Revenue agents that lost thier jobs due to the end of prohibition (and wanting to become drug agents) and also support from the distillery and brewery lobby.

Anyone know more about that?

Yes, at least the first part anyway. The folk in the Midwest and other “heartland” regions don’t understand it and are scared of it.

I understand it and am not at all scared of it thank you very much. :wink:

I would suppose someone from "El Gin " be be more of a boozer than a doper.:stuck_out_tongue:

anecdote-earmuffs-on/ I’ve been an ER nurse for 10 years, I don’t think I’ve seen a single admission that was either primarily or secondarily* related to marijuana. Alcohol or tobacco related? Fuck me!/earmuffs-off

Primary: I drank so much I blew my liver
Secondary: a drunk driver ran me down

And that supposition would be correct, however just because one is a baseball player doesn’t mean that you can’t sqeeze a little golf in from time to time. :smiley:

Well, the Supreme Court, and lower courts, have interpreted the Interstate Commerce Clause very broadly for over a century - I’m too burned out from clinic work to grab my con law casebook (or westlaw) right now, but I’d bet all $7.57 in my pockets that drug laws are shoehorned in there.

(Of course, I know you know that, Bricker - but I figured someone else might not.)