Gallup Poll shows that the United States is in Favor of Marijuana Legalization
According to a recent Gallup poll, 60% of Americans are in favor of marijuana legalization, and many Republicans are also showing their support for the drug.
Adults over the age of 21 can legally use marijuana in nine states including Washington, DC. Medical marijuana is now legal in 30 states after a ballot initiative to legalize medical marijuana in June was approved by voters in Oklahoma.
A survey on marijuana use was carried out in 1974 by Gallup and it showed that 16% of Americans supported the legalization of marijuana use. However in the 1980s during the era of the drug wars, support remained stagnant in the 25% range through 1995, but increased to 31% in 2000 and has continued increasing since then.
Support for legalization reached its peak after Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize the recreational marijuana in 2013. In 2016, 60% of Americans continued to support the marijuana legalization.
During past decades, support for marijuana legalization has increased within most age groups, but more age groups are in favor of marijuana legalization than others.
Recreational Marijuana is legal in some form in California, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada while Arkansas, Florida, and North Dakota have passed ballot initiatives legalizing medical marijuana.
Currently, nine states including Washington, DC, have legalized recreational marijuana for adults over the age of 21.
At the beginning of the year, the governor of Vermont signed a bill to legalize marijuana in the state and this made Vermont become the first state to legalize marijuana through the legislature.
As support for medical marijuana continues to grow, many states have changed their approach towards the drug which has led to the use of medicinal marijuana. Support for medical marijuana has continued to grow because more people receiving the positive effects of it. A recent poll carried out in April 2018 discovered that 93% of U.S citizens are in favor of medical marijuana legalization.
29 states nationwide including Washington D.C. legalized medicinal marijuana in May 2018. These states include: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia.
Marijuana is currently illegal in the United States under federal law. However, constant federal restriction of marijuana hasn’t stopped the marijuana industry from growing.
Even though the federal government in Washington D.C. are still against the drug, nine states including the District of Columbia has legalized the use of recreational marijuana while 30 states have legalized medical marijuana. And more states are passing legislatures to legalize marijuana. The marijuana industry is booming in the U.S.
Report from BDS Analytics states that the rising marijuana industry gained about $9 billion in 2017 sales. The sales from the marijuana industry compared to sales of the entire snack bar industry, or to annual revenue from Pampers diapers.
When the state of California opened its massive retail market in January it was a huge addition to the marijuana industry. The state of California has been projected to grow to $6.6 billion by 2020, and over $23 billion nationally, up from $3.4 billion industry in 2015.
The industry has also led to many job openings. According to Ed Keating, chief data officer for Cannabiz Media, which tracks marijuana licenses, the U.S has about 9,397 active licenses for marijuana businesses. This deals with cultivators, manufacturers, retailers, dispensaries, distributors, deliverers and test labs.
According to BDS Analytics, more than 100,000 people are investing in the cannabis plant and that number will keep growing. In 2017, the marijuana industry solely employed 121,000 people. If the marijuana industry continues to grow at this pace, the number of employees in the sector could reach 292,000 by 2021.