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Jeff Spicoli’s Time Has Arrived

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MJ reports new Pew Research data showing that 52% of Americans support the legalization of marijuana, against 45% opposed, which fits with the recent initiative success in Washington and Colorado (more thorough analysis here.)

 

Likewise not surprising is the similarity of the trendlines in the graph above as well as below. The data on support for same sex marriage obviously doesn’t go as far back into the past, but in 1996 support for SSM was 27/68, while the graph above it looks to be roughly the same for marijuana legalization in 1996. Indeed it might have been a bit lower. Without downloading and quickly eyeballing the GSS from 1996, I’m left with this story, which states that “there has also been a change among the Baby Boomer generation – half now support legalization, up from 24 percent in 1996.”

There’s a research question in there considering the similarities (and differences) in the two issues, but as I’m a bit addled with jetlag, I’m not very imaginative at the moment. I don’t believe either presage the vaunted coming Democratic majority, an idea I’m skeptical about, but I will note with some pride that my home state of Washington passed initiatives on both this past November, the only state where one can recreationally smoke a bowl at the reception of a same sex marriage.

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  • bobbyp

    If only we in the “48th Soviet of Washington” could pass a state income tax – trifecta!

  • Shakezula

    I don’t believe either presage the vaunted coming Democratic majority

    I’d settle for the coming of a “Let’s not be complete dicks,” majority.

    • “I’d settle for the coming of a “Let’s not be complete dicks,” majority.”

      That may be exactly what this is. But while any erosion of the Drug War is welcome, if you want to be cynical about this you could point out that the “not be complete dicks” exception seems mostly limited to taboos that prosperous white people enjoy.

  • ChrisTS

    Interesting that 1% don’t know if they ever used. Note that 0% don’t know if they used in the last year, so the 1% group is not the effect of short-term memory loss.

    • njorl

      There’s a period between blacking out and passing out when they might have smoked pot, but they would never have done anything so terrible while sober.

    • DocAmazing

      If you’ve ever taken public transportation in Oakland, you might well have consumed pot in the last year without knowing it. AC Transit: didn’t like it, didn’t inhale.

    • UserGoogol

      Well the real answer is that even the most incoherent poll option will sometimes be answered by 1% of the population because you only need one or two people who just aren’t taking the survey seriously.

  • DanMulligan

    Someone, on some blog, somewhere (or, who knows, Fox News) will print those two together and prove the correlation and thus the causation.

    No research needed.

    • JKTHs

      No, actually they are both caused by the welfare state. Where’s CarbonDagSpeakChester when you need it?

      • cpinva

        “No, actually they are both caused by the welfare state. Where’s CarbonDagSpeakChester when you need it?”

        just a guess, but probably still waiting for someone to help him dress.

        • You don’t think he blogtrolls nekkid?

          • Belly up to teh bar, kiddios! One round of Braino™ on the house!

            • NonyNony

              If I knew what Chestnuts looked like, I might need the Braino.

              As it is, I suspect he looks something like this, so no Braino needed.

  • Anon

    The curves are somewhat similar, but SSM approval definitely has a feature around 2010. here’s a plot of both.

  • c u n d gulag

    While I think pot should be legalized today, even if states, and the whole nation, “legalize” pot tomorrow, the problem is still going to be the damn drug testing.

    Until we have some system that determines what a tolerable level of pot in your system is if you’re operating a car, or machinery, or answering phones in a call center, or whatever – like with alcohol – people will continue to lose their jobs, even though pot is as legal as Bud Lime or Everclear.

    Pot will continue to be used to cull the herd of highly compensated employees, older employees, and/or trouble makers.

    And the problem on an individual level will be, how do you determine how strong the pot is you’re smoking, and, how long it will take to exit your urine or bloodstream, so that you can pass a drug test?

    And, while it’s great to say that “ANY level should be acceptable!”, keep in mind which country and century you’re living in.
    There’s a lot of PROFIT in drug testing, counceling, setting some sort of barriers for arresting, and putting and keeping people in private jails – and don’t think the lobbyists for those groups don’t know it, and won’t be prepared to pay-off the nearest politician.

    Don’t think for a second that the same corporations which sell you your “Single-malt Pot,” won’t be happy to fire you for using their product, or finding some other ways of making profits off of the back-end of legalization.

    • While I think pot should be legalized today, even if states, and the whole nation, “legalize” pot tomorrow, the problem is still going to be the damn drug testing.

      I’d rather be out of work than in prison.

      • That’s what you say now. But once they stop feeding the prisoners…

        • Umm. That was supposed to be at least marginally meaningful. Sorry.

        • c u n d gulag

          Food is obviously an “entitlement program” in private prisons!

          • sparks

            Just ask Nieporent!

    • Bud Lime
      Talk about a need for a law.

      • c u n d gulag

        You can’t legislate against bad taste, and you can’t fine a legal product for tasting bad. Nay – HORRIBLE!!!

    • njorl

      There’s a test that works to see if someone is impaired due to marijuana. Simply play “I Shot the Sheriff” by Marley, and if they can resist joining in, they’re OK. If they only join in for the chorus, a blood test may be needed to verify impairment.

      • NonyNony

        How does that distinguish between guys who are impaired because of alcohol.

        Because I’ve got to be honest – many of my redneck family members would fail that test (when they claim to be ) sober.

        • fledermaus

          Perhpas Legalize It by Peter Tosh would work better

          • HP

            I prefer Fats Waller’s “Viper’s Drag (If You’s a Viper).”

  • Carbon Man

    The legalization of dangerous narcotics may be what finally undoes this country.

    • bobbyp

      ’bout time.

    • Sherm

      That’s nice. But we’re having a discussion here regarding the legalization of marijuana.

    • Malaclypse

      I was hoping that moar buttsecks would be needed.

      • That’s a hell of a way to ingest pot.

    • ScottRS

      Lucky, then, that marijuana is neither dangerous nor a narcotic.

    • Johnny Sack

      Cannabis is not a narcotic. Try again.

    • Elrond Hubbard

      This country is already undone. The least the government can do at this point is to not lock us up for toking up.

  • Sherm

    Jeff Spicoli’s Time Has Arrived

    I’ve been thinking about this. If I’m here and you’re here, doesn’t that make it our time?

    • DocAmazing

      win

  • Derelict

    I have long marveled at the number of boomers who were against legalizing (or even decriminalizing)pot. I once did an informal survey around the office of a company I worked for. Most everyone there was between 35 and 55 years old. Out of 15 employees, only one had never smoked pot. Most admitted to being regular smokers through high school and beyond.

    With usage rates as high as they’ve been reported in various real polls and surveys, why has the country been so resistant to legalizing something a clear majority of the population has enjoyed at one time or another?

    • McAllen

      A lot of people are horrified of teenagers doing the same things they did.

  • Johnny Sack

    So why the change? I guess 17 years is a lot of time for older people to die. Hell, someone born in 1996 can vote starting in 2014. High time marijuana was legal.

  • Karen

    Just because, today, April 6, is Willie Nelson’s 80th birthday.

    • DocAmazing

      Wait, not 4/20?

      • Karen

        If only. Also, apparently I’m even wrong about today. His actual birthday is April 30, but I got a request to be part of a giant birthday card for Willie to be delivered on 4/30.

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