I've never smoked pot, or even a cigarette. I think it's a stupid thing to do, and I think less of people who do it. I know people will probably start arguing about that in the comments, and that's fine.
At the same time, I think that governments banning marijuana is beyond stupid.
Let's be realistic. Marijuana is probably better for the population than alcohol. I can see arguments each way, but to me it comes down to how it affects other people. Stoned people aren't exactly a danger to society. If anything they help the economy - especially the fast food sector. Which one is worse for you is pretty much irrelevant - people can do whatever they want to their bodies as far as I'm concerned.
Yet alcohol is legal and pot isn't. This makes no sense. We can't ban alcohol, because we know from experience what a disaster that is, so really the only right thing to do is legalize marijuana.
Then, like everything else, let's tax it. That way instead of spending untold millions of dollars on trying to get it out of our cities, we can earn money from it. As you may know, the US is in terrible financial shape. Turning a liability into an asset wouldn't be the worst thing in the world for us.
Crime would go down too. I doubt there are many deranged potheads committing crimes, but it is a big money business for drug dealers and they do commit actual crimes. Take away their business, or force them to go legit, and now you don't have to worry about them.
I'd personally be in favor of legalizing ALL drugs. How about if we treat our adult citizens like adults and let them make their own choices and live with them? Want to get liberal and hippie? Make all of the tax money on cocaine go to state sponsored rehab programs.
There is absolutely no way to force drug users not to do drugs. It won't happen ever, no matter how many scary cops we send into the ghetto. Why try? Why not accept peoples' desires and try to use their tax money to fund education?
And I'm not talking about the insanely bad "look... I smoked pot and now I killed my baby sister" ads that we have now. Those ads are so ridiculous that it actually makes me think "well, these anti drug people are total morons. Maybe drug users are the smart guys here."
Instead let's send the message that pot is bad for your lungs, but that the real negative effect it has is that it makes people lazy, is a waste of money, can lead to dependence, and tends to make people do stupid things and eat junk food. In other words, it's not the end of the world, but it's probably not something you want in your life.
Give people good and accurate information to make a decision, and maybe they'll make good decisions. Lie to them and force your morals on them, and maybe they'll rebel.