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© 2006 DC Appleseed

Solving DC Problems Solving DC Problems

Idea Submitted by Anonymous DC

Decriminalize It

D.C. lives under the thumb of the Feds. No voting rights in congress or the senate. We have to beg them for money to upkeep the things they destroy by being here without paying taxes. They try pass laws that few in the city approve of just to use the city as their experiment.

The feds in return supply about 25% of the DC operating budget. If DC wants to be independent, it needs to be able to find another source for that 25%. As a lot of new residents come in to the city, new tax revenue will come which should make up for that shortfall....

but... if the city government passed a law decriminalizing marijuana along with taxing it as done in Amsterdam, they might be able to bring in a significant portion of that expense. It would take a toll off of DC's police and jails and probably attract more permanent residents to the city.

A measure allowing medical marijuana was already passed a few years back, but a judge disallowed any use of funds directed towards. But it still means that the residents are for this and it could be done.

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4.13.06 - C.M.

The difference between marijuana and alcohol is that a lot of people, a good portion of them, can have a drink and then walk away--and even drive away, considering they have not consumed too much. With pot, you're pretty much done until it wears off. It saddens me that people think boosting our local economy with a mind-altering drug is a good idea. If we turn to legalizing pot, then civilzation as we know it here in the District is pretty much shot to hell. Have we run out of other possibilities? It tells me that you folks have perhaps been smoking the "wacky tobakky" a bit too long.

4.12.06 - M.v.

While I love the idea and am informed enough to know that regulation would, in the end, be better for the city in terms of generating income and reducing crime (not to mention a great way to get the Feds back for all the ridiculous/political policies they've forced on us--i.e., repealing our gun ban, etc; it is obvious from this thread that too many people have drank the koolaid on this issue to ever see it to fruition. Too bad for the enlightend ones. PS - the thing that drives me crazy the most is the gateway drug thing...this is a myth...MJ is less harmful than alcohol

4.12.06 - C.M.

Accusing someone of being "high on crack or something" is exactly the sort of comment I would expect from someone who is ill-informed. Legalizing something does not free it up--if DC were to legalize marijuana, it would need to regulate it in order to tax it. Regulation is a costly matter. Just think about how much money the city spends policing for purposes related to alcohol use. And, yes, this is taxpayer money we're talking about here.

4.12.06 - O.T.

If you legalize something it would SAVE money as it's something that the police DON'T have to enforce. Taxing it would give money to DC. Are the people posting here high on crack or something?

4.07.06 - b.i.

Either criminalize alcohol, or legalize pot. It's a double standard. Marijuana advocates should look at their own arguments and think about what it would be like if they were talking about alcohol, and those critizising Marijuana should do the same.

4.04.06 - C.M.

You had asked for proof that marijuana leads to hightened crime and death. How about this: Bijan M. Nassirdaftari, 17, of Rockville, was murdered July 7 last year when he met with other teens whom he thought he would be purchasing a pound of marijuana from. Instead, his killer robbed him of the $3,100 he'd brought and used it to purchase a dirt bike to replace one he'd had stolen. PC, thanks for backing me up. I don't think I'm narrow-minded, just a law abiding citizen who doesn't want to see things go from bad to worse when it comes to drug use in the District.

4.04.06 - P.C.

You both are wasting your breath and not on marijuana (pun shamefully intended!) because CM makes one good point: DC just outlawed one type of smoking, it will not pull a 180 and legalize another. OD, your ideas are creative but just not realistic. I guess you will have to just live with others' "narrow-mindedness".

4.04.06 - C.M.

Marijuana is a gateway drug--one that can easily lead to the use of other, harder drugs. And, if a dealer is selling it, he or she could be selling any number of other drugs. If by chance they are not, they are still dealing in that seedy underworld. Sure, you say you want to make it possible for the government in DC to regulate it. OK, how? Legalizing this drug would cost a lot of money. You can't just say something is legal. It would need enforcement and plenty of it, just as alcohol does. I, for one, don't want to pay out my hard earned money to allow people to come to my city and smoke pot. Simple as that. We're already a major-enough tourist attraction here and legalization would only add to that. You can make the same argument for alcohol but that's legal almost everywhere in the country and is hardly a draw. I'm not a hippie. That's correct. Regarding your nitpicking comment on the spelling of "argument" I say this: grow up.

4.04.06 - O.D.

Here's what you said: "How about everything about illicit drugs leads to death, murder and higher crime rates... as well as chronic disease."

How does marijuana lead to any of those? Please provide any proof. Unless you meant to say alcohol.

"If it is OK to legalize marijuana where do we draw the line?"

How about at marijuana? just because you decriminalize one, doesn't mean you decriminalize everything.

For a non-hippie you sure don't know how to spell "argument"

4.03.06 - C.M.

I did read the entry--did you read mine? Decriminalization would lead to a whole host of other problems. As far as I'm concerned, I'm less worried about the guy selling pot as I am about the guy who is selling pot AND a whole host of other illegal drugs. There will always be a black market for marijuana regardless of whether it is regulated by DC government. I love this old hippie arguement.

3.31.06 - O.D.

You'd rather spend money to put people in jail rather than help them. I see you're not a Good Samaritan. Also the idea was for decriminalization, not medical marijuana, which could be taxed and help DC budgetary woes. Please read the entry before commenting.

3.31.06 - C.M.

The drug trade kills people? How about everything about illicit drugs leads to death, murder and higher crime rates... as well as chronic disease. I don't see how legalizing marijuana would help to lower the crime rate. Stringent government regulation of an illegal drug would more than likely still lead to a black market for people who want to bypass the system altogether. Comparing marijuana to alcohol is like comparing apples to oranges. Someone who is high can still just as easily jump in a car and hit someone. If it is OK to legalize marijuana where do we draw the line? A local pot dealer is hardly a huge problem, it's the people who are selling heroin, crack and what have you. What kind of message would this send to a city rife with a drug problem already. Amsterdam, while it may be a drug haven for those who like to indulge, also has had a huge problem with HIV rates and crime--as a result of decriminalization. Furthermore, if my tax dollars are to spent on this issue, I'd rather the money go to prosecuting pot dealers and pot heads rather than paying their medical bills down the line when they develop lung and heart disease from years of legalized use.

3.30.06 - O.D.

you can certainly ban smoking in bars but legalize marijuana. nothing contradictory there. and the drug problem in the city doesn't have to do with people DOING drugs , it has to do with people being killed in the drug trade. Something that would sharply go down if that portion of an illegal operation were made legal. and I'm fine with more marijuana smokers coming into the city. better than loud drunk alchoholics who might drink and drive.

3.30.06 - C.M.

As a District resident and taxpayer, I simply cannot agree with the decriminalization of marijuana. First decriminalization for medicinal purposes only would do nothing to alleviate budgetary woes. Furthermore, Washington has a large enough drug problem already--and one that extends far beyong marijuana. As said, this city does not need more people moving here--especially those people coming here with the intended purpose to dabble in a drug whose recreational usage is illegal elsewhere in the country. We just passed a cigarette smoking ban in bars and restaurants effective in 2007. How could we agree to allow marijuana use but tell tax paying citizens that they can not have a cigarette with their cocktail?


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