Did Prop 19 Change Anything?


Jacob Sullum believes it did, in a way:

The debate over Prop. 19, which received a great deal of national attention by virtue of California's size and significance, has highlighted the intellectual bankruptcy of the prohibitionist position in a way that nothing in recent memory has. Drug warriors were (or should have been) highly motivated to defeat the initiative because of the precedent it would set for drug policy federalism. Yet their arguments were embarrassingly bad. Really, really, really, really, really bad. This weakness, together with the growing influence of age cohorts in which a history of marijuana use is the norm, is reflected in rising public support for legalization, which a Gallup poll last week put at 46 percenta new high in that organization's surveys. By contrast, a Gallup poll in 1977, a time that is remembered as relatively pot-tolerant compared to the Just Say No era that followed it, found that only 28 percent of Americans favored legalization.

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