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Michigan State Democrat Representative Brandon Dillon, who represents the 75th House District, which includes part of the city of Grand Rapids, wants to legalize marijuana.

In an opinion piece he wrote and published in the Grand Rapids Press and Mlive.com he believes the time has come to legalize marijuana in Michigan.

According to his opinion piece Representative Dillon “cosponsored and attended recent discussion at the Grand Rapids Community Media Center's Peter Wege Auditorium, featuring Ethan Nadelmann and Maj. Neill Franklin. Nadelmann, founder and executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, is a leading proponent of drug policy reform, while Maj. Franklin, the executive director of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition and a 23-year veteran of the Maryland State Police, wants to see ineffective and dangerous drug policy reconsidered.”

Is it time to legalize marijuana?

What are the pro’s and con’s you see about doing so?

Rep. Dillon believes attitudes in our society around the recreational use of marijuana have changed and he cited quite a few polls and bills passed in Michigan cities to prove his point.

Recent surveys in Michigan have shown that more than half of Michigan citizens are in favor of legalizing, regulating and taxing the adult use of marijuana.

Rep. Dillon and others believe that not only would this be a stream of funds from the taxing of the product but it could reduce the amount of taxes Michigan spends on our prison systems.

He states in his opinion piece the following “nationwide, about 1 in 8 people are incarcerated on offenses related to marijuana. Stopping the prosecution of these possession cases would mean fewer people behind bars and fewer taxpayer dollars spent to keep them there.”

We will still have to pay for law enforcement to find and arrest illegal growers and black-market sellers, would we not?

There would be less people locked up in prison for possession charges, if they actually are locked up these days for possession.

Could this increase the availability of marijuana also increase children attempting, then, getting addicted to marijuana?

What is the difference between smoking a joint and drinking a six pack?

Problem is most of the people I knew growing up who smoked marijuana smoked it daily if they had it.  I did not see that in drinkers.

What are your thoughts?

Or please feel free to start a discussion and write your thoughts in the comment section.