Show-Me Cannabis support group could use numbers to their advantage

U-News Staff

More than 50 percent of Americans favor the legalization of marijuana use, a record high, according to poll results from October 2011 on

The number has been climbing since the ’70s. The results of the poll were based on telephone interviews conducted Oct. 6-9, with a random sample of 1,005 adults aged 18 and over, living in all 50 U.S. states.

It is a rare week in the police blotter when there is not some report of either students smoking marijuana or the smell being reported emanating from one of the residence halls.

But the number doesn’t surprise some people. According to a recent Kansas City Star article by Mike Hendricks, a recent study has shown that many attitudes about marijuana are shifting. Marijuana has become the drug of choice for teens, beating out the use of dope, booze and even cigarettes, says the Kansas City Star.

According to statistics at, more than 30 percent of all college students have used marijuana in the past year.

Hendricks wrote about the three major reasons, suggested by experts, for the shift amongst youth: the domino-effect decriminalizing of pot makes it appear safer than other options, it is easier for teens to get ahold of and many teens are picking it up from the earlier generation who experimented with it in the past.

As usage becomes more prevalent, so does the media coverage. Many new articles and supporters are rampantly surfacing since the support group Show-Me Cannabis was granted permission to begin its signature petition that would get the legalization proposal on the ballot. They need 144,000 signatures by April for the initiative to be on the 2012 Missouri ballot, according to the article in the Kansas City Star.

“The petitions would legalize pot for everyone 21 and older, allow doctors to recommend marijuana use for medical purposes, release imprisoned Missourians convicted of nonviolent pot-related crimes, and pave the way for the state to tax $100 on every pound of pot,” according to an online article by Ben Palosaari of The Pitch.

The fight may be harder than expected, though, especially after legislature decided against jumping on the bandwagon of legalizing medical marijuana and dispensaries just last year.

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