HOW WOULD MARIJUANA
Those conducting benefit-cost analyses usually think in terms of the greatest good for the greatest number, perhaps augmented with observations about effects on traditionally disadvantaged populations. But what’s good for the country as a whole is not necessarily good for every individual. This chapter highlights the effects of legalization—at the national level—for members of various interest groups.
It would simplify your life. You would be able walk the streets with an eighth in your pocket or drive with an ounce in your glove compartment, and never have to worry about getting arrested for possession. Of course, you could still be arrested for smoking and driving, using in public, or sharing a joint with someone who is under 21, but the police would not bother you for smoking on your porch or at a neighbor’s barbeque.
With legalization you also wouldn’t have to worry about the collateral consequences of being convicted of marijuana possession, which can include being denied federal student aid or access to public housing.