Rokkvi Vesteinsson replied 9th Mar '15:
Interesting question. While I certainly think cannabis has negative health effects, especially on mental health and tends to make the consumer less productive, I certainly think a lot of time and energy is wasted on chasing down and punishing people with small amounts of cannabis. The energy and money on that should be used elsewhere and it´s unproductive and unfair to jail people for possession of small amounts of it.
Whether it should be legalized completely is a little more complicated. I´ll go over what I think are the main pros and cons of legalizing cannabis.
1) You would be taking away potential income from criminals, who also sell other and more dangerous drugs as well as possibly running other criminal activities.
2) It could be taxed and create money for the state.
1) Generally easier access means more consumption. Some people think legalizing it will decrease consumption because it would be less exciting to do it, were it legal, but this is nonsense. In countries like Denmark for example, where alcohol is less expensive and easier to come by than in the other Nordic countries, alcoholism is higher.
2) It may be that when people have easy access to a soft drug like this as well as it being legal and thus probably more socially acceptable, it would increasingly become a gateway drug for people who would venture into harder substances. I have to admit I don´t know how much research has been done on this and what it points to, so I encourage people who are interested to simply look it up.
So to sum it up I simply do not feel very strongly either way about whether it should be legal or not. Western countries like the Netherlands, where it is legal, seem to do fine. But most countries where it´s illegal seem to do fine too. I do feel strongly against having a lot of effort put into hunting down, arresting and severely punishing users though and I think the USA have certainly done that.
Thomas Jones replied 27th Jan '15:
free weed for everybody