The Basics of Colorado and Marijuana
Although more and more states have grown increasingly lenient toward marijuana use in recent years, Colorado was the first to legalize it for recreational purposes. This action has since sparked a variety of communities organized around promoting its use, and has also served to provoke more than a fair share of controversy.
The Rippling Effects of Legalization
Arguably one of the most hotly debated topics in the modern age, marijuana legalization has given birth to a variety of arguments concerning its overall usefulness in the medical field, as well as the morality of its utilization for recreational purposes.
During the moment of decision, the motion to legalize marijuana passed by a slim margin. Though over 50% were in favor, about 45% of voters were in opposition. Many were concerned that it would result in the state becoming a hot spot for drug users and that public areas would become unsafe. Yet the legalization of the drug did not lead to population acceleration the way some had feared, and there are still restrictions placed on the smoking of cannabis in public areas.
The Pros of Marijuana Use
Despite the controversy, the legalization of marijuana seems to have had a positive impact on Colorado in a variety of ways:
- Economic boom: Since events have been organized around the drug, the money exchanged has been generated back into the state’s economy and has therefore improved its finances.
- Tourism: Cannabis tourism is fast becoming a very economically advantageous industry for the state, not only for those who buy and sell the products; hotels, restaurants, and other local businesses can benefit from the influx of visitors.
- Marijuana tax: Marijuana is not a cheap habit, either; sales for recreational products are taxed at 25% along with the sales tax of 2.9%. These taxes are generated back into the community and currently fund schools.
The Cons of Marijuana Use
However, there are some downsides to marijuana legalization as well. Some negative consequences of the legalization include:
- Lawsuits from other states
- Deaths in which marijuana was reported as a contributing factor
- Armed robberies
- Plants and products being confiscated or destroyed due to non-authorized chemicals, fungicides, pesticides, and a variety of foreign substances
While these are serious concerns to take into account, some say that they have merely served as a means for legislature to unfairly seize more power and control in the name of “safety,” and that consumers are once more trampled beneath the boots of tyrannical government.
Takeaway Facts of Marijuana in Colorado
While other states have followed Colorado’s leniency and have relaxed their laws concerning various uses of marijuana, the issue still remains sensitive and is the subject of many continuing studies and ongoing discussions.
However, the bottom line is that the long-term effects of marijuana legalization, whether they are positive or negative, remain to be seen. The process is still relatively new and how it may impact society is yet to be truly deciphered.