If You Turn the Corner Enough, You Go in a Circle


Anticipating the release of drug use survey results that usually come out in August and September, the Marijuana Policy Project has assembled some nifty graphs that remind us of the long-term picture. "From 1991 to 2000," says MPP Executive Director Rob Kampia, "marijuana arrests more than doubled, and what happened? Daily marijuana use by high school seniors tripled, the number of new users increased, and marijuana availability didn't change."

Going back further, MPP juxtaposes Richard Nixon's 1972 declaration that "we are winning this war [on drugs]" with a 2003 statement by drug czar John Walters: "This survey shows that when we push back against the drug problem, it gets smaller." MPP notes that "at the time of this [2003] statement, the number of new marijuana users among youths under 18 was over 10 percent higher than at the time of Nixon's 1972 statement. Marijuana availability and daily marijuana use among 12th graders were unchanged from 1975 (the earliest figures available), despite a tripling of marijuana arrests since the early 1970s."

NEXT: The Invisible Benefits of the 'Assault Weapon' Ban

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  1. Shameless Plug Update:

    I learned this week that Reason is one of the sponsors for this weekends Seattle Hempfest. We expect up to 250,000 people to attend over the 2 day event which will have 50 bands and 60 speakers including Rob Kampia.

    Thank you Reason.
    Band Coordinator
    Seattle Hempfest 2004

  2. I’m confused. Did marijuana use among high school seniors triple, or stay the same? I re-read the blurb 5 times and cannot figure it out.

  3. Don’t worry Reid, all you have to know is that drugs are a bigger problem than ever, and that the war on drugs has been a great success so far.

    *Highway is not responsible for any brain or cognitive injuries you may suffer as a result of trying to understand both statements at once*

  4. Where’s the graph showing % of white women having sex with “men of color”?

    I need to see Reefer Madness again.

  5. Remember that an increasing number of police and judges are calling for an end to the insanity of drug Prohibition. Check us out at http://leap.cc/tbay for information on how to join (your anonymity can be protected if asked), how to support us, and how to book a LEAP speaker for your school event (highschool or college), church group, civic club or other educational effort.

  6. Hugs not drugs!

  7. Rehab is for quitters.

  8. Shouldn’t turning the corner too many times be illegal on the grounds it causes dizziness?

  9. Drugs not bugs!

    (O.k., back to work … *clickety click*)

  10. I agree with what you say – makes sense to me.
    Looking for some uk propecia?

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