I really can't believe we are still having this conversation.  What do we currently have, 14, 15 states that have legalized recreational pot?  Things are looking up as the Feds are working on making cannabis legal for recreational use.

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This, for one, would loosen up the banking end it all.  Sellers would be able to use banks just like any other business can and buyers would be able to purchase cannabis products with their debit and credit cards.

Those that still fight the legalization of cannabis usually are ignorant to the facts and fear making recreational marijuana legal is opening a can of worms that would lead to just more problems for law enforcement, etc.

Economists and researchers have done much research on cannabis and what they found is all pretty positive.

For example, in the states that have legal pot, legalization didn't seem to substantially affect crime rates. Overall, legalization had not affected the rate of violent crime in legal states.

Legalization seems to have little or no affect on the rate of traffic accidents and fatalities.  Economists Benjamin Hansen, Keaton S. Miller and Caroline Miller found evidence suggesting legal pot had no effect on trends in traffic fatalities in both Colorado and Washington.

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Many thought the price of pot would plummet after legalization making people more inclined to use it.  Fact is, prices have barely budged. In other words, the price of getting high has stayed high.

Marijuana also has created jobs, a lot of jobs. A recent report from Leafly & Whitney Economics found that the marijuana industry is booming like no other.  The calculated that 77,000 jobs were created in the marijuana business in 2020.  Nationwide, 321,000 people are employed in the industry.

We all know that may states are struggling with budgets.  Tax revenue collected has outdone expectations.  For instance, Colorado takes in more than $20 million a month adding up to around $387 million for 2020.  California more than doubles that figure with $50 million a month. Other legal states have similar results.

Legal states also are saving about 20% on the number of workers collecting workers comp. Researchers theorize that legal marijuana is being used for pain therapy in place of highly addictive opioids and much less debilitating.

Use among teens has been steadily declining and it's really no surprise that AARP crowd is toking up more these days.  Cheers!

(Planet Money/NPR)

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