In a poll released today, the Pew Research Center reports that more people support marijuana legalization than ever before. Supporters are not yet the majority, but the numbers have been trending our way slowly but surely every year:
The public is divided over whether the use of marijuana should be legal or not; half (50%) oppose legalization while nearly as many (45%) favor legalizing marijuana. Support for legalizing marijuana is up slightly since March, 2010; and over the past 40 years — drawing on trends from Gallup and the General Social Survey — support for legalizing marijuana has never been higher.
Young people under the age of 30 favor legalizing the use of marijuana by a 54%-42% margin. Opinion is divided among those in middle age groups. Those 65 and older are broadly opposed to legalization (66% illegal, 30% legal).
Given that the number of people who agree with legalization has been rising by about 1% per year, the message here is clear:
We need to keep talking about this issue with everyone we know. If we continue to educate our fellow citizens, many of whom still buy into the Reefer Madness propaganda of yesteryear, support for ending marijuana prohibition will be the majority opinion sooner than we think.