Public Support for Marijuana Legalization Highest Ever

Mar 03, 2011 , , , , ,


In a poll released today, the Pew Research Center reports that more people support marijuana legalization than ever before. Supporters are not yet the majority, but the numbers have been trending our way slowly but surely every year:

The public is divided over whether the use of marijuana should be legal or not; half (50%) oppose legalization while nearly as many (45%) favor legalizing marijuana. Support for legalizing marijuana is up slightly since March, 2010; and over the past 40 years – drawing on trends from Gallup and the General Social Survey – support for legalizing marijuana has never been higher.

Young people under the age of 30 favor legalizing the use of marijuana by a 54%-42% margin. Opinion is divided among those in middle age groups. Those 65 and older are broadly opposed to legalization (66% illegal, 30% legal).

Given that the number of people who agree with legalization has been rising by about 1% per year, the message here is clear:

We need to keep talking about this issue with everyone we know. If we continue to educate our fellow citizens, many of whom still buy into the Reefer Madness propaganda of yesteryear, support for ending marijuana prohibition will be the majority opinion sooner than we think.


25 responses to “Public Support for Marijuana Legalization Highest Ever”

  1. “Those 65 and older are broadly opposed to legalization (66% illegal, 30% legal).”

    So sad….. remnants of the William Randolph Hearst smear campaign….

  2. If tweeter can bring down dictactorships, the spead of knowledge amoung americans can bring the end to prohibition.
    “the only thing we have to fear is fear it’s self”. And life in Jail. Our tax dollars at work.

  3. The reason +65 year olds are opposed to marijuana is due to the reefer-madness PROPAGANDA campaign that they were bombarded with.

    JFK famous quote applies here:

    The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic.

  4. There’s lot of work to still be done. I talk to people and they think folks in California let us all down — and I haven’t even been to Cali since 1965. That’s a little unfair. So is marijuana prohibition. There are 49 more states out that that need even more work than most of the West Coast.

    Just a suggestion from one campaigner to everyone at MPP. How about setting a date? I know how that’s a political risk, but setting a date is also something that defines what remains to be done. I think we’re getting to the point where it’s as much about convincing people to work down that checklist, that it can be done!

    And sooner than many might think.

    PS I’ll be sending my membership renewal in, soon as I get some cash as a struggling grad student patient. 😉

    Go big green!

  5. I’m 58 and I have always been for legalization. I have 45 years of experience in my head–LOL.
    The best thing for the 65 and older crowd is to die. Go away and take your evil ways with you. The gates of hell are wide open And Cerberus is waiting for you.

  6. It’s a fair bet the over 65 geriatric generation are in the clutches of big pharma. The polling data is incomplete because it doesn’t reflect how drugged up they are; how much money is currently spent through medicaid and medicare keeping them on their pharmaceutical prescriptions per senior citizen versus the rest of favorable support.

  7. This polling data by Pew Research Center needs tweaking more input by the 65 and older opponents of marijuana legalization.

    Are they on medication for ailments? How many different pharmaceutical medications are they taking? For what? For naught, they can’t list how many pills they’re taking! And, big pharma bills medicaid FULL RETAIL price for each prescription!

  8. We need more education in states, such as Louisiana, where being caught with only a few grams of marijuana can lead to some serious legal troubles. Now in the state mentioned, if you are caught for a second time it is considered a felony carrying 2-5 years sentence. These laws do more harm than good, and will have a lasting effect on society, far worse than the drug it self.

    We need help

  9. …”that whenever any form of government shall become destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, & to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles & organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety & happiness. Are we there yet?…. Has this government done enough harm to us?

    http://video.pbs.org/video/1825223761

  10. Jesus said to do unto others as we would have them to do unto us. None of us would want our child thrown in jail with the sexual predators for using a little marijuana. None of us would want to see our parent’s home confiscated and sold by the police for growing a couple of marijuana plants to ease the aches and pains of growing older. It’s time to stop putting our own families in jail. It’s time to let ordinary Americans grow a little marijuana in their own back yards; this will go a long way toward putting the criminal drug gangs out of business for good!

  11. @ m – I agree – I would add we also need to move more in the direction of showing by way of television commercials ~ examples of what a regulated legalized market would look like. I assume that legal marijuana would have quality and purity testing and LABELING would clearly identify the Brand or Trade name as well as the POTENCY (similar to alcohol).

    Yes (some) of today’s marijuana is stronger than yesterday’s – that’s all the more reason WHY we need LABELING. You wouldn’t want to go into a liquor store and not know if you were buying poison, ginger ale, beer, wine, brandy, whiskey, or the extremely potent EverClear!

    And no one should drink Everclear the same way most people drink beer! When something is more potent – much less is typically consumed.

    I’m sitting here watching the Today show and the ladies are sipping a fruit drink w/rum – and the world has not ended…

    Imagine a late night tv show where either the host and or guest could use a little marijuana and then proceed to talk about whatever interests them. No reefer madness – no psychotic rage – no rape and murder and mayhem… not really that much different that the two ladies sipping a fruit and rum drink.

    then we will have arrived in something much more closely resembling the “land of the free” we claim to be.

  12. I am over 65, and I am for legalizing marijuana, for my back pain and to be able to sleep and other medical benefits,but no one has ever asked for my opinion on this.Until all over 65s are polled don’t assume we’re all against it!

  13. Anyone in Iowa needs to read this…

    http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/index.php/2011/03/04/what-survived-what-died-check-out-this-mega-list/?odyssey=mod|lateststories

    DRESS CODE: A school district could adopt a dress code policy that limits students clothing if officials think it would improve the health, safety or positive educational environment of students and staff. Currently, a district can prohibit only gang-related apparel. HF 212 alive

    MEDICAL MARIJUANA: Patients with a debilitating medical condition that included cancer, glaucoma, hepatitis C, HIV, Crohn’s disease and other maladies could possess marijuana, and nonprofit dispensaries would sell it to qualifying patients, under SF 266. dead

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How can anyone look at the list of bills that made it and think they are doing the job they were voted in to do. According to this, screw the sick and dying but you better not be tippn’ your hat at school…. wow. I feel sick to my stomach at the moment.

  14. Democracy is 51% of the people taking away the rights of the other 49%.
    Thomas Jefferson (1743 – 1826)

    This is what we have folks….your nieghbors telling you how you can live your life.

    I dont know about the rest of you , Im sick of my neighbors telling me what I can do with my life.

    Dont you all think its time this country become the REPUBLIC it was?

    A republic is a state under a form of government in which the people, or some significant portion of them, retain supreme control over the government.

    What we have now is government retaining control over the people…those for who government works for…

    Let the republic stand and get the hell out of my life.

  15. As more people learn the truth about cannabis plant and its remarkable medicinal properties, the numbers will go even much higher! As the truthful information about the remarkable medicinal properties of the cannabis plant becomes more widespread, these numbers will go even much higher! Cannabis prohibition is doomed to failure, as it is based on a series of total “un-realities”, which no amount of repression can make “real”. Cannabis is NOT physically addictive as it lacks a documented physical withdrawal syndrome, the so-called “gateway drug theory discredited as invalid, much touted by the DEA drug Marinol is not at all the same as medicinal cannabis, smoking Cannabis does not increase the risk of lung cancer, and cannabis use suppresses violent behavior. These are REALITIES! To further say that Cannabis plant does not have medicinal properties is simply delusional and is a complete “break” with “reality”. If anti-Cannabis repression by the DEA and its allies were to be intensified, the rate of alcohol, cocaine, opiates, other hard drugs, alcohol, and dangerous prescription drugs would increase sharply. Neither the DEA, not its minions can make people perceive Cannabis as “unsafe”, where is in reality it is quite safe, much safer than alcohol and other alternatives. With the rise of the use of alcohol/hard drugs, the amount of violence and mayhem in this society will also rise, something that every mother and wife should consider. In these hard economic times our so-called “representatives” do not even dare talking about cutting the bloated DEA budget, especially its so-called “marijuana” enforcement, while they are willing to discuss cutting everything else. This is because the DEA and its minions are very good with attaching labels, and no one wants to risk being “labeled” as “soft on drugs”! The employment drug tests have a potential of “screening out” “Picassos”, and Lady GaGa’s, and Willie Nelsons, but letting people like Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson slip through (if the employers are “lucky”). And to say that Cannabis Plant does not have medicinal properties is simply delusional! Cannabis prohibition, as based on glaring scientific and philosophical “un-realities” and can never succeed in the long run!

  16. The more government denies truths,common sense,reality…the more it looks foolish and illegitimate.

  17. People need to realize this is not their America it is our America, and this is not our world it is everyones world.

  18. So what if the majority of Americans support legalization? Does that mean it will happen? The majority of Americans support the distribution of medical marijuana but it is not legal.

    I guess I will wait, patiently, then.

  19. Our government wastes $135 MILLION DOLLARS PER DAY to enforce the prohibition of Cannabis. We spend 58 BILLION DOLLARS PER YEAR to convert all of these non violent citizens into wards of the state (i.e. prisoners).

    Combined, this is enough money to put THREE MILLION PEOPLE BACK TO WORK with an annual salary of $35,000.

    And then once those 3 million people are back to work, the money that’s saved by not having to support 3 million people with social programs (such as unemployment or welfare checks) could be used to put another million+ people back to work.

    According to the US department of Health and Human Services very detailed and in-depth report:

    http://oas.samhsa.gov/2k7/youthFacts/youth.cfm

    4,348 children will try Alcohol for the first time today. And according to the UN, WHO & CDC’s statistics, 40-60% of all violence is related to alcohol use. Thousands of these children will die every year due to alcohol overdose.

    3,577 children will try Cannabis for the first time today. Violence statistics related to marijuana use are virtually nonexistent. None of these children will die of cannabis overdose according to the CDC and other official record keepers. In fact not one soul has ever died of overdose due to marijuana consumption.

    Yet our government protects the alcoholic industry and spends $135,000,000 (million) per day on the prohibition of cannabis. Not one dime of that is spent to prohibit alcohol, the true root of many of our social problems

    End the prohibition and end the massive waste of a HUGE PORTION of our taxpayer dollars that accomplish absolutely nothing other than making cartels rich and Big Pharmas stockholders richer.

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