Obama says Pot no more dangerous than alcohol
In a startling statement President Obama was quoted as saying in New Yorker magazine that ‘pot’ is no more dangerous than alcohol:
“As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life. I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol,”
With this most recent statement, President Obama is definitely paving the way for the reform of current marijuana laws. According to the President:
“Middle-class kids don’t get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do…and African-American and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties.”
The recent changes in the laws of Colorado and Washington State have the entire country abuzz. Both states have experienced unprecedented demand and sales of pot through legal means for recreational use. In the first week alone in Colorado sales exceeded $6 million with a 25% sales tax, an amount that is a definite bonus to the tax revenue of any state. The state projects pot sales to be close to $600 million for 2014 with about $75 million in tax revenue for the state. This amount combines both retail and wholesale sales.
The big negative to legal sellers of marijuana is that they cannot accept credit cards nor can they do business with a bank because of existing federal laws. So like many illegal drug dealers there are large amounts of cash on hand. This becomes a financial and security risk for all involved. In addition store owners cannot take any traditional tax write offs.
As the winds of change continue to steadily blow across the country on this issue President Obama still urged caution. Obama called the sales in Washington and Colorado an “experiment”. The question is when will the experiment be over and marijuana prohibition end across the nation?