U.S. Federal alcohol prohibition started in 1920 and ended in 1933 as a massive failure. Not only did it do absolutely nothing to curb drinking habits, it simultaneously facilitated the rise of organized crime in America.
The passing of the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 marked the beginning of the U.S. Federal cannabis prohibition, with the results of cannabis prohibition being the same as alcohol.
Cannabis prohibition empowers drug cartels and organized crime, and has done virtually nothing to eradicate cannabis consumption in America.
At the center of this long-standing prohibition of cannabis, the logical question is often asked, ‘why aren’t they both legal?’
Regulating cannabis like alcohol
Alcohol has historically been socially accepted, and something voters can relate to.
According to a Gallup Poll, the majority of Americans (63%!) report they drink alcoholic beverages.
Chances are better than average that you, or someone you know, drinks alcohol.
This fact has largely shaped current cannabis political reform strategies to focus on the slogan, “’regulate marijuana like alcohol.’
Regulating cannabis like alcohol is a concept people can understand, and one that polls well in many parts of America.
It polled very well in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Alaska, which is why these campaigns used this slogan to lead the charge towards recreational cannabis legalization in these states.
‘Regulate marijuana like alcohol’ was the key slogan used by the successful Colorado campaign. When the head of the campaign, Mason Tvert, was asked what he credited as the secret weapon of the campaign, he said it was the phrase ‘cannabis is safer than alcohol.’
This secret weapon phrase is a campaign slogan you can imagine we will be hearing again and again moving forward – because it works.
But is cannabis really safer than alcohol?
Recently the Governor of Arizona came out in opposition to a recreational cannabis initiative there, and challenged voters to research whether cannabis was really safer than alcohol.
Almost instantly cannabis supporters, media outlets, and believers in truth countered him with the facts.
One study, which is my favorite one to point to when it comes to alcohol and cannabis, found that not only is cannabis safer for consumption than alcohol, but that it’s roughly 114 percent safer!
In addition, another study found alcohol use often contributed to violent behavior, whereas cannabis and violent behavior have no link.
When it comes to driving, people under the influence of alcohol are 4 times as likely to be involved in motor vehicle crashes.
Compare that to experimental studies involving cannabis and driving, which have found that ‘although cognitive studies suggest cannabis use may lead to unsafe driving, experimental studies have suggested that it can have the opposite effect.’
Cannabis IS safer than alcohol
Cannabis is not only safer than alcohol for the individual’s health, but cannabis consumption is also safer than alcohol for society as a whole.
Anyone who researches cannabis’ safety in comparison to alcohol’s safety will logically conclude that cannabis is safer than alcohol. It’s not even a close call.
If alcohol is legal, which I believe it should be, cannabis should also be legalized federally. Contrary arguments are ludicrous.
Comparing alcohol to cannabis is, in reality, a very effective way to highlight the need to reform cannabis laws.
Arizona’s Governor, and people like him, can argue against cannabis legalization until they are blue in the face, but this will never change the fact that cannabis is safer than alcohol, and as such, should be legalized across America for responsible adult consumption.