Over the last decade, American’s views on marijuana have changed. Three decades ago, the fight for legalizing marijuana seemed like a lost cause. In 1999, only a small percentage of American citizens supported the legalization of cannabis. However, the nation started to gradually liberalize, and by 2018, a large number of Americans offered their approval. The states also changed their laws to accommodate the use of both medical and recreational marijuana. When Barack Obama became president in 2009, thirteen states had already legalized medical marijuana. Eight states had also legalized recreational marijuana. By the time Donald Trump was sworn into office, the numbers had grown to twenty-eight states. The number has since increased with more states amending their marijuana laws. This article focuses on how recreational marijuana has changed over the past decade.
- Expanding Landscape. Since the 1970s, cannabis has remained illegal under the Controlled Substance Act. Additionally, every state law did not allow the use or growth of marijuana. However, these laws have changed over the last decade. The map of state marijuana laws has gone through several revisions. In 1996, California spearheaded the American journey to legalizing marijuana. Currently, several state laws allow the legal use of recreational marijuana on both coasts. All but four states in America have allowed the use of legal marijuana in some form. If your state provides marijuana, you can easily access it in local joints or online stores.Badass glass is the best online store for recreational marijuana smokers.
- Growing Public Support. For a long time, very few issues have gained the kind of public support that marijuana has over the last decade. Although medical marijuana is always on the lead, recreational legalization is also above the 50% mark and rising. Public support for recreational marijuana rose after Washington, and Colorado allow recreational marijuana in 2014. By 2017, the support had skyrocketed to 61%. The support for recreational cannabis is happening across all ages and political parties. However, the legalization has received the most support among millennials. The silent group is the only one that is opposed to legalization. According to the Third Way website, Democrats and Independents are supportive of the legalization while 53% of Republicans oppose the move.
- Federal Policy. Even though federal laws have evolved, they remain unchanged when it comes to marijuana. Both the presided and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) are responsible for protecting federal marijuana laws. However, these laws now conflict with state laws. The conflict has created uncertainty over the last two administrations. The Donald Trump office is yet to conclude on the matter.
- Policy Makers. The American states have experienced remarkable changes over the last decade. States have used their legislature or popular votes to pass marijuana laws. All the eight states that have legalized recreational marijuana have done so through popular vote. Once the states legalized recreational marijuana, their policymakers devoted themselves to ensure that the laws are implemented successfully. In 2017, several states, including Colorado, Alaska, and others, sent a joint letter to the Attorney General defending their state affairs.
Currently, about one-fifth of the American population live in states where recreational use of cannabis is legal.