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New Jersey: Tell Governor Christie Stop Opposing Marijuana Legalization

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie recently made public statements calling the notion of regulating adult marijuana use "beyond stupidity."

Yet, according to a 2015 Rutgers-Eagleton poll, nearly six in ten New Jersey adults support "legalizing, taxing, and regulating marijuana for adults 21 and over." Similar percentages of voters through the country also endorse legalization.

That's because the majority of Americans realize that the ongoing enforcement of marijuana prohibition financially burdens taxpayers, encroaches upon civil liberties, engenders disrespect for the law, and disproportionately impacts young people and communities of color. It makes no sense from a public health perspective, a fiscal perspective, or a moral perspective to perpetuate the prosecution and stigmatization of those adults who choose to responsibly consume a substance that is safer than either alcohol or tobacco. 

In truth, America's real-world experiment with regulating marijuana has been a success. Thirty states, including New Jersey, now regulate the plant's therapeutic use and eight states authorize its use and sale to all adults. These policy changes are not associated with increased marijuana use or access by adolescents or with adverse effects on traffic safety or in the workplace. Marijuana regulations are also associated with less opioid abuse and mortality. In jurisdictions where this retail market is taxed, revenue from marijuana sales has greatly exceeded initial expectations.

Help us educate the Governor and his staff to the facts on marijuana. Enter your information below to urge Gov. Christie to support legalization. 



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  • Governor Chris Christie

    PO Box 001

    Trenton, NJ 08625

     

    May 9, 2017

     

    Governor Christie,

    You recently made public statements calling the notion of regulating adult marijuana use "beyond stupidity."

    Yet, according to a 2015 Rutgers-Eagleton poll[1], nearly six in ten New Jersey adults support "legalizing, taxing, and regulating marijuana for adults 21 and over." Similar percentages[2] of voters through the country also endorse legalization. 

    That's because the majority of Americans realize that the ongoing enforcement of marijuana prohibition financially burdens taxpayers, encroaches upon civil liberties, engenders disrespect for the law, and disproportionately impacts young people and communities of color[3]. It makes no sense from a public health perspective, a fiscal perspective, or a moral perspective to perpetuate the prosecution and stigmatization of those adults who choose to responsibly consume a substance that is safer than either alcohol or tobacco. 

    In truth, America's real-world experiment with regulating marijuana has been a success. Thirty states, including New Jersey[4], now regulate the plant's therapeutic use and eight states[5] authorize its use and sale to all adults. These policy changes are not associated[6] with increased marijuana use or access by adolescents or with adverse effects[7] on traffic safety or in the workplace.[8]Marijuana regulations are also associated with less opioid abuse and mortality.[9] In jurisdictions where this retail market is taxed, revenue from marijuana sales has greatly exceeded[10] initial expectations.

    Instead of reflexively opposing marijuana legalization, lawmakers like yourself should welcome the opportunity to bring necessary and long overdue controls to the cannabis market. A pragmatic regulatory framework that allows for the legal, licensed commercial production and retail sale of marijuana to adults but restricts its use among young people – coupled with a legal environment that fosters open, honest dialogue between parents and children about cannabis' potential harms – best reduces the risks associated with the plant's use or abuse. By contrast, advocating for the marijuana's continued criminalization only compounds them.

     

                                                                                                    Sincerely,

                                                                                                    Paul Armentano

                                                                                                    NORML Deputy Director



    [1] http://eagletonpoll.rutgers.edu/rep-marijuana-apr2015/

    [2] https://poll.qu.edu/national/release-detail?ReleaseID=2453

    [3] https://www.aclu.org/report/report-war-marijuana-black-and-white

    [4] http://norml.org/legal/medical-marijuana-2

    [5] http://norml.org/legalization

    [6] https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/65/ss/ss6511a1.htm?s_cid=ss6511a1_e

    [7] https://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/pubs/pdf/pa799.pdf

    [8] http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/hec.3390/full

    [9] http://www.nber.org/papers/w21345

    [10] http://www.drugpolicy.org/resource/so-far-so-good-what-we-know-about-marijuana-legalization-colorado-washington-alaska-oregon-