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Letter: NJ Should Follow CO, WA, Legalize Pot

A reader in Toms River writes that the outcome of ballot initiatives across the country this November signal that it's time to end marijuana prohibition.

To the Editor:

It is very promising to learn that Colorado and Washington State legalized marijuana for all adults, as the result of voter referendums on Nov. 6. Recreational marijuana will now be controlled, taxed and regulated by those states in a a way similar to alcohol. Legitimate businesses will be licensed to sell marijuana.

New Jersey arrests approximately 25,000 people per year for marijuana offenses and has a (nearly) 10 percent unemployment rate. It is time that New Jersey legalizes marijuana all together to create jobs, reduce crime and lower taxes.

Marijuana is objectively less harmful than alcohol. It is not addictive and no one has ever died from it. It is irrational to punish adults for using a substance safer than alcohol.

Just like alcohol prohibition, the prohibition of marijuana has not stopped its usage. But rather only moved the profits of its production and sale into underground markets and unfairly brands otherwise law-abiding adults with criminal records, limiting access to employment and education.

Marijuana legalization will give New Jersey more jobs, lower taxes and reduce crime. New Jersey, follow the lead of Colorado and Washington State by taxing and regulating marijuana for adults like alcohol!

Eric Hafner
Toms River, NJ

Have something to say? Email your letter to the editor to Christina Paciolla, cinnaminson@patch.com.

Cinnacide November 15, 2012 at 05:56 AM
From the sounds of your comment, I think you need to start toking.
Eric November 16, 2012 at 07:10 PM
Gee what a surprise you're against the legalization of pot and you don't drink. And why do you keep calling Ric Eric I'm Eric Ric is short for Richard not Eric. I thought you would've learned that in your 1st grade reading class but apparently they didn't teach you that on the short bus.
joebob jerrty December 15, 2012 at 11:06 AM
less jobs for cops more tax money.weed sales more tax money. making it harder for kids to get there hands on it good things. less crime leading to less killings good thing yes.more jobs less fighting more money good thing.people high on weed don't do crimes if some one was going to rob a bank give hem or her a hit weed see if there still thing about robbing that bank lol.sick people taking someones life away by putting them in jail for smoking weed.AND IM 100% RIGHT TY
joebob jerrty December 15, 2012 at 11:18 AM
it will be cheaper no risk its legal 250 bucks on street will be 100 bucks in a store less cops more tax now the asshole cops giving out bs parking fines can get a real job
lonestar January 02, 2013 at 05:01 AM
long ago they tried to outlaw liqour (the sale of not the consumption of)...crime increased..people died (bad booze) smuggleing was big business.. gee that went well...A whole industry was created to stamp out the sale of liquor ...after awhile a politician realized that the law was hypocritical as lawmakers were all partying with supposedley illegal liqour...this politician proposed that makeing liqour legal would generate large sums of much needed tax revenue and weaken organized crime..Does anyone see history repeating itself ...???

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