By Daniel Jamroz
As far as the process of marijuana legalization in New Jersey goes, president Stephen Sweeney of the State Senate is fully supportive of legalizing medicinal marijuana for recreational usage. Sweeney however does not view this topic as a first priority for bettering New Jersey.
Although Chris Christie has publicly stated that he would not support any plans to decriminalize the substance, Sweeney ensures that more steps on the process of legalization will occur once a new governor is elected. Another four years will be needed to encompass perhaps a new governor or a change of heart on the controversial topic.
Consequently, a poll ran in New Jersey showed that residents are more favorable to recreational marijuana use as opposed to online gambling. The poll found that 41% of respondents would support the recreational usage of marijuana if legalized while 32% of respondents supported online gambling, which is already legalized in New Jersey.
Appropriately, Rutgers students have been questioned about their say on marijuana legalization in New Jersey.
“At least you won’t get arrested for making your own choice in what you put into your body. But mainly, the hemp industry will take off and create many new jobs and give America back some manufacturing jobs, which are much needed,” said Alexander, a 23 year old student in his last year of education at Rutgers University.
Law enforcement won’t have to spend tax dollars to support inmates who are in prison for marijuana related non-violent crimes. It’s definitely a positive thing, not just for ‘stoners‘. Also, as a reference I can point out that when Portugal legalized every narcotic. Drug addictions dropped by 50% so it’s not directly proportional.
“People are going to do what they want regardless of its legality, so I think it’s better if taxes don’t go to waste. Just my opinion however.” Christian, a 22 year old student in his junior year of education explained, “Marijuana is a depressant so therefore it makes you less motivated to do anything meaningful, at least if you’re on a full high. If you smoke one or two blunts a day and do something meaningful with your life then good for you, but if you take more than that and do nothing (which you will feel like doing), then it’s just holding yourself back,” he said.
Lastly, Danielle, a 21-year-old student said, “if they legalize marijuana in New Jersey what will it really change? People are still going be sitting on their asses, eating Dunkin Donuts and complaining about how bored they are all the time.”
In the Senate and in the community, the same debates are met. Will legalization of marijuana make a huge change in New Jersey for the better? Will the change cause more trouble than good to the state? New Jersey residents will have to wait four years to know the outcome.