Sen. Joe Bolkcom’s guest column was a great template for beginning the discussion on legalization, regulation and taxation of marijuana in Iowa (“Iowa should regulate marijuana like alcohol,” Feb. 10).
At least 10 states have already made this practical and intelligent solution to our long term failure in the war on marijuana. The prohibition of alcohol resulted in a spectacular growth of well armed and very rich criminal groups and did nothing to stop the citizens who wanted alcohol from getting it. The same result is seen today with marijuana.
Those who choose recreational use of marijuana seem to have little difficult in obtaining it, and they must purchase the drug from criminals, who have far more dangerous and more addictive substances to sell.
We spend a great deal of our tax money trying to arrest the low-level dealers while most of the money winds up in the hands of rich Kingpin criminals in countries south of or borders and only recently have we succeeded in catching just one at that level and then only with the cooperation of neighboring Mexico. We could be setting up rules and regulations and allowing Iowa-based companies to develop and provide jobs, and future significant tax revenue to help Iowa finance education and health care.
Albert E. Cram