JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Legalizing Pot

I’ve only smoked pot twice in my life. Both times came shortly after I graduated college. The first time, smoking off a joint, I felt nothing. The second time, taking hits from a bong, I recall thinking I was wearing the Great Gazoo’s helmet. That was sort of cool.

Never smoked again. Don’t really have a reason. When I wanted to let loose, I drank to excess. It was comfortably familiar, in a way marijuana never was.

That being said, it’s time to legalize marijuana in this country. Regulate it, tax it, test it—whatever. Make people have to be 18 or 21 to buy—fine. But, in 2010, I’ve run out of reasons why it should be illegal. It’s not more harmful than cigarettes, lacks the horrible after vomits of booze, doesn’t impair driving nearly as much as a bunch o’ beers. Plus, the money it could generate this government would be huge. Hell, we legalize gambling under certain circumstances, and it’s undeniable that’s a significantly more harmful habit than getting high.

At this point, criminalization is just a dumb joke. Make it legal, work out the complications and move on …

It’s time.