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What Does President Obama Have To Say About The Pot Movement?

President Obama

What does President Obama tell his daughters about smoking marijuana?

Which Michigan cities have voted to decriminalize marijuana?

It’s pretty well known that President Obama smoked marijuana as a kid. It is also well known that the last 3 presidents have all admitted to smoking marijuana, although 1 never inhaled. With our country examining where it stands on the marijuana issue, you may find what President Obama has to say about the issue interesting.

Is the Country Changing?

While Michigan has already voted in favor of legalization of medical marijuana, states all over the country are now looking at that same piece of legalization. If you are wondering which states have legalization medical marijuana, USA Today has compiled a list at Which States Have Legalized Medical Marijuana? As of today, medical marijuana is now legal in 20 states and the District of Columbia. Of those states, Washington and Colorado have legalized marijuana for recreational use.

Then, there are the states like Colorado and Washington who have legalized recreational marijuana as well as medical marijuana. How did the sale of recreational marijuana do in its first day and first week of being legal? Check out our article, Recreational Marijuana Sale in Colorado Soar.

On The State Level

Ann Arbor has led Michigan’s movement to decriminalize marijuana back in the 1970s. You can read about how John Lennon and Yoko Ono came to Ann Arbor, Michigan and held a freedom rally in our article, Looking to Ann Arbor, Michigan to Decriminalize Marijuana.

More recently cities like Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Jackson, Flint, Ypsilanti, and Ferndale have all voted to decriminalize marijuana.

What is President Obama’s stance on Marijuana?

What does he tell his girls about smoking pot? What is his opinion on the impact marijuana has on society?

The Interview

In an interview with David Remnick of the New Yorker, President Obama gave a few things away when it comes to how he personally feels about marijuana. Below are the main points that are discussed in the interview.

  • Smoking Pot Similar to Smoking Cigarettes and Less Dangerous Than Alcohol
    While he is our president, he is also a man who admits to smoking marijuana and cigarettes in his youth. In the interview, President Obama compares smoking pot to smoking cigarettes and states that pot is less dangerous than alcohol.
  • What Does President Obama Mean By “Less Dangerous”
    When asked to clarify this point, he says “in terms of the individual consumer”.
  • What Troubles President Obama About the Marijuana Issue?
    President Obama discussed his frustrations about how more minorities are arrested and incarcerated because of marijuana. He shared about how the poor are less likely to afford quality legal assistance and are unable to avoid harsher punishments. In the interview he says,“We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing.”
  • What Does The President Have to Say About States Like Colorado and Washington?
    Again, coming back to the incarceration issue, President Obama states that there should not be a situation in society where only a small group of people get punished for something a large group is doing.

While it may look like President Obama is for the legalization of marijuana he also has this to say…

  • He tells his girls that it’s a bad idea, a waste of time and not healthy.
  • It’s an overstatement to say it will solve all these social problems.
  • The “experiment” in Colorado and Washington will be a “challenge”.
  • Where is the line between marijuana and “harsher” drugs? Harsher drugs, he says, do have profound social-costs and costs to the individual users.
  • If marijuana does become legal, what’s to prevent harsher drugs from finding their way to becoming legal?

Summary

With the country examining its stance on the use of recreational marijuana and so many Michigan cities specifically working to decriminalize it, the words from our current President have a lot of weight. They may even help the residents of Michigan decide what side of the issue they are on.

What Do You Think?

  • Are you for the legalization of recreational marijuana or are you against?
  • Do you agree with President Obama when he says that marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol?
  • What do you think about what President Obama had to say about the poor being unable to afford proper legal representation and being incarcerated longer because of it?

Please let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.

This article was published on: February 12, 2014 and was last modified April 26, 2017