This year marks the 75th anniversary of federal marijuana prohibition in the United States. It only took 13 years for Americans to realize the futility of alcohol prohibition. Can you believe we’ve let 75 years of marijuana prohibition go by? The marijuana plant has a long history of medical, religious and industrial uses dating back thousands of years. Yet few Americans had even heard of it when it was first federally prohibited in 1937. Today, it’s the most widely used controlled substance in the U.S. and the world. More than 100 million Americans – about 42 percent of adults – admit to having tried it. The value of marijuana produced in the U.S. is estimated to be more than $35 billion, making it far and away the nation’s largest cash crop. Despite its ubiquity, though, almost half of the roughly 1.7 million people arrested for drug law violations in the U.S. every year are arrested for nothing more than a low-level marijuana offense.
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