Beyond Impressive: the Benefits of Legalizing Weed
If only the whole world knew just how much cannabis is wonderful for our overall health, it would be legalized instantly! With this in mind, we’ll do our best to explain how the benefits of legalizing weed could change the world for the better.
Depending on the area you live in, perhaps you have already noticed the changes marijuana legalization has brought with it. Citizens of Colorado, California, and other states where weed is legal sure have a lot to say, and mostly for the better. Parents of children battling Dravet and LGS (Lennox-Gastaut syndrome), for example, are grateful for their kids being alive. There are lots of cancer survivor stories praising the plant.
Benefits of legalizing marijuana matter to everybody — even if you and your family (pets included) are in perfect health, have a good job, and are not interested in participating in the marijuana industry in any way. However, do you know just how much of your tax money is wasted on marijuana busts? We do. Believe me, you won’t like the figure.
By the time you’re done reading this article, you won’t ask what cannabis legalization can do for you. You’ll want to know what you can do for it!
Health Benefits of Legalizing Weed
Well, how much time do you have on your hands? If we were to tell you about all the benefits of marijuana for your health, we would have to list all of our health-related articles right here. In a nutshell, this is how marijuana benefits human health:
- A higher number of survivors — As blunt as it may sound, out of all the benefits of legalizing medical marijuana, this one is crucial. People battling deadly diseases and with low survival statistics have better chances with cannabis. Obviously, this is an argument that is hard to beat.
- Immunity booster — Overall, studies confirm that cannabis compounds aid our immune system, mostly via our own ECS (endocannabinoid system). The CDC’s official stance is that more research is needed. However, we’ll show you a list of currently known benefits.
- Faster recovery — CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties were acknowledged in a Canadian study. However, one should avoid smoking it after surgery!
- Physical and mental health advantages
- Overall better quality of life
In short, the benefits of legalizing weed are priceless regarding our health. Here is a brief (yes, indeed) list of illnesses and conditions that can be treated with cannabis:
Medical marijuana benefits are simply beyond comparison. Still, some would argue how much money it takes. The next section is about profit from pot.
Economic Benefits of Legalizing Weed
Whichever way you look at it, marijuana statistics are absolutely stunning. Despite the vaping crisis, which has recently hit the US and affected cannabis stocks, the industry got back on its feet in no time. In short, the cannabis industry seems unstoppable. It’s all due to its financial benefits, some of which are as follows.
High Employment Rates
Thanks to the cannabis industry and CBD industry in particular, a lot of new jobs were created, such as budtenders, bud trimmers, cultivators, cannabis consultants, advocates, and so on. The economic benefits of legalizing marijuana can be seen from the fact that this is one of the fastest-growing job markets. To be more precise, 250,000 people were employed in 2017 within this industry.
The average median pay of a cannabis worker is 11% higher than the median US salary of $52,863. Among the 6-figure paying jobs in the industry are cannabis consultant, cannabis extraction technician, dispensary chief operating officer, and chief financial officer.
To sum up, federal marijuana legalization would drastically decrease unemployment rates.
The most obvious benefits of legalizing weed in Colorado are reflected in its legendary tax revenues. Ever since Colorado joined the recreational weed states, it has generated over $1 billion in tax revenues. So what’s the secret?
The marijuana taxes are usually 10% to 37% higher than local sales taxes. Thus, Washington was able to earn $319 million last year, while California and Colorado reaped $300 and $266 million, respectively.
The money can be used for schools, medical research, addiction centers, and other projects. However, should we discuss the economic pros and cons of legalizing weed, we would have to mention a source stating that 72% of Colorado’s tax revenue is spent on regulation and administration of recreational cannabis.
Farmers never ask why marijuana should be legal because they know the answer too well. The recent legalization of hemp on the federal level brought lots of opportunities for growing a new crop. The benefits of legalizing weed are quite obvious for farmers.
The US decreased its hemp products import by 57% in 2016, and by 17% in the first half of 2018, investing in domestic production instead. As a result, farmers are given more choices and can focus on one of the most profitable industries at the moment.
The popularity of hemp production can be observed in an example from Maine. When hemp was legalized in 2016, there were only two licensed growers. Today, there are about 170 farmers with 2,700 acres experiencing the benefits of legalizing cannabis.
About 90,000 acres are filled with industrial hemp all over the USA, according to the National Hemp Association. It is relatively easy to grow, which minimizes the harvest risks. Better banking services are almost guaranteed, as well as crop insurance and legal interstate travel.
Legalization would open up new opportunities and allow farmers to join in the incredibly growing industry.
There are so many examples of the biggest marijuana companies nowadays which started as small startups but are now earning millions of dollars! The relatively young industry is earning head-spinning figures.
Check out the CBD industry. Economic benefits of legalizing weed can be seen in the fact that:
- CBD sales are expected to reach $1.8 billion by 2022.
- The US sales of CBD and hemp-based products rose by 57% in 2018, compared to the previous year. In short, the best CBD oil sells like hotcakes.
- CBD edibles market is huge. The sale of CBD-infused gummies increased by more than 53% in Colorado in 2018 compared to 2017. Furthermore, Zoots Premium Cannabis Infused Edibles, a Washington-based cannabis company, is about to be sold for $855,000.
- The following cannabis companies have seen a lot of financial benefits of legalizing weed:
- Aphria Inc.
- Tilray Inc.
- The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company
- Cronos Group Inc.
- GW Pharmaceuticals
- Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc.
- Cara Therapeutics Inc.
Their market caps exceed $1 billion, and their cannabis stocks have excellent growth rates. Also, it doesn’t take too long to succeed. Charlotte’s Web Holdings Inc. started off in 2013 as a small family startup, but thanks to the now world-renowned weed strain, it’s earning millions.
To reap the benefits of legalizing weed, you needn’t produce or trade cannabis. The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company earned $2.6 billion by selling equipment needed for cannabis cultivation. If you have any qualms about the cannabis business but would like to enjoy the perks, this could be your niche.
- CBD pet products should reach $125 million in sales by 2022. Basically, that’s a CAGR of 57%.
Therefore, citizens of the states where weed is legal have greater chances of starting up a very profitable business and can learn how to invest in marijuana.
Social Benefits of Legalizing Weed
States with legal weed have their own choice of how they are going to use the money obtained from marijuana revenue tax.
Benefits from Tax Revenues
Usually, it is spent on better education, healthcare, police, or helping the endangered community members. For example, this is how Oregon divided its $108.6 million in state and local taxes from the 2016-2017 period:
- 40% to state schools (34 million)
- 20% to addiction and mental health services ($17 million)
- 15% to the state police ($12.7 million)
- 5% to Oregon Health Authority ($4.25 million).
Benefits of Colorado legalizing weed have been felt across the state, as it has dedicated 20.7% of revenue to public health and environment. This state has 3,000 cannabis businesses and 40,000 licensed cannabis employees.
No Wasting Money on Prohibition Funds
Another advantage of legal weed states is that they no longer waste money on debates whether recreational or medical cannabis should be legalized.
For example, according to a study published in 2016, $6 billion of the federal money was spent on marijuana prohibition. Many consider this to be the best argument for the benefits of legalizing cannabis. What’s more, federal tax revenues from legalizing cannabis would have been $8.04 billion. This means $4,020 per person.
Low Crime Rates
Contrary to popular opinion, marijuana legalization does not increase crime rates. Quite the opposite — legalization leads to a reduction in some types of crime.
No More Marijuana Busts
Naturally, crimes related to cannabis possession, production, or distribution plummet. For example, the number of cannabis arrests decreased by 50% in Colorado during 2012-2017 (from 12,709 to 6,153 arrests). As for Alaska — the rate reduced by 93%!
Extra benefits of legalizing medical weed are explained in a 2017 study. It argues that violent crimes decreased in the states close to the Mexican border with the legalization of medical marijuana. As the FBI’s crime reports from 1994 to 2012 state, California had the biggest decrease in violent crimes (15%). Arizona, though, had only a 7% fall. Homicides connected to drug trading also fell by 41%(!).
As for the reports stating how homicide has increased in marijuana-legal cities such as Seattle, D.C., and Denver, it’s interesting to note the same tendency in the cities which haven’t legalized it yet — New Orleans, Chicago, and Baltimore.
Crime Solving Speed
The benefits of legalizing weed refer to greater speed in solving crimes too. The crime clearance rates in Colorado and Washington have increased after legalization, as reported by the FBI data. In other words, police officers have more time to deal with violent crimes when they don’t waste time on cannabis offenders.
In one word, federal marijuana legalization would bring more law and order into the country.
How many states have legalized recreational weed? At the moment, there are 11 states:
- California (the first state to legalize weed (medical) in 1996)
- District of Columbia
The economic benefits of legalizing weed in the state of Illinois should be felt more after it finishes the legislation in January 2020, so hold your horses.
Meanwhile, another 33 states have legalized medical marijuana in some way.
Why Is Marijuana Illegal?
Based on everything that has been outlined so far, the question arises why we even have to discuss the pros and cons of weed. Pharmaceutical companies and their overbearing influence aside, there are some health concerns regarding cannabis usage.
First of all, the hospitalization rates due to marijuana usage have risen. One more argument for the necessity of debate on the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana is that marijuana poisoning rates went up too. It isn’t possible to die due to marijuana overdose, but the feeling is far from pleasant.
Cannabis products are not FDA-regulated as cannabis is still defined as a Schedule 1 drug. That means that it has no health benefits. For comparison’s sake, cocaine is Schedule 2.
Poor education on cannabis leads to worrying results. A national survey reported that youth aged between 12 and 20 are 5% more inclined to try cannabis. The number of young Colorado cannabis users (18-25) has even duplicated.
How Can We Help?
What are the benefits of legalizing weed? If anyone asks, you’ll now be armed with facts and statistics to defend your stand. That is exactly what all of us can do to aid the legalization fight. Become more educated on the subject. With that, most issues from the previous section will disappear.
Legalizing cannabis has invaluable benefits for human life, above all. People are staying alive and well because they are granted medical help. Among other important benefits of legalizing weed, you could name excellent healthcare and education, better jobs, high employment rates, business ventures, and help to those in need (usually the marijuana tax revenue goes to struggling families or for a similar noble cause).
All in all, reasons to legalize weed abound. Let’s just hope our dream will come true soon enough. Therefore, spread the word to the world!