A recent survey indicates that the American people are ready to finally put an end to the War on Drugs.
A Pew Research poll released earlier last month finds that not only is the American public hell bent on the federal government passing measures to lessen penalties surrounding marijuana-related offenses, but they also want them to eradicate stiff sentences for offenses involving cocaine and heroin.
Drug advocates contend that as long as public opinion continues to weigh against the current policies, lawmakers will have no choice but to eventually join in.
“The public is definitely pretty far ahead of politicians,” said Jag Davies with the Drug Policy Alliance. “Elected officials have been so scared for so long, but they’re starting to realize it’s to their benefit to reevaluate [their policies].”
The latest survey, which is the first in over a decade to catch a glimpse of the opinions surrounding the American drug policy, finds that 67 percent of the population believes that Uncle Sam should pursue treatment options for hard drug offenders rather than sentencing them to prison. Incidentally, 63 percent agreed that eliminating mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses would be a step in the right direction.
Perhaps the most impressive statistic to emerge from this poll tells the tale of an America prepared for full blown marijuana legalization: 75 percent stated that despite their personal views, legal weed in the United States was inevitable.
So, how long will it take for the federal government to embrace the voice of the American people and reveal a new drug policy model? Some lawmakers speculate that marijuana will be legalized on a federal level within the next decade; others argue it could be as soon as the next five years. So far, it appears the entire country, especially its leaders, are staring off into the west to see how the “Great Marijuana Experiment” transpires in Colorado and Washington before making any drastic decisions.
The outcome of legalization in these states, however, is expected to work out famously, which has drug advocates looking for politicians to someday soon begin raising the white flag.
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