In case you hadn’t noticed, there is a bit of a debate in this country over marijuana prohibition. And there are a million reasons to support the resilient plant. Voters in Colorado and Washington have charted new territory by legalizing it outright, and there are medical pot laws on the books in 21 more states (and counting!).
But some of the arguments for marijuana legalization should ring especially true for the LGBT community.
Scroll down for five reasons for gays to get behind legalizing pot:
1. It’s the “same-sex marriage” of mind altering substances.
Let’s look at how public opinion has changed on the subject of legalizing marijuana over time:
Now here’s the graph showing national opinions on gay marriage over time:
Notice anything similar? Now we’re not saying this should be an end-all be-all deciding factor, but gay people know what it’s like to continue having to fight tooth and nail for something even when the majority of the country agrees with us. It’s time for the law to catch up with the times.
2. Marijuana can help people drink less
Not only is weed much safer than alcohol, it can actually help people consume less booze. In states with medical marijuana laws, you can actually obtain a prescription for this reason alone. No one has ever gotten into a bar fight stoned, nobody’s ever overdosed on herb, weed doesn’t lead to domestic violence and pot isn’t physically addictive like alcohol.
It’s no secret that the gay community struggles with binge drinking and alcoholism at higher rates than the general population. It isn’t pretty. But smoking pot has been shown to assist people in drinking less, and that’s something we should get behind. A few beers and a couple tokes beats a handle of vodka any day.
3. Stoned sex
Have you ever had drunk sex? Who are we kidding, of course you have. It’s a sloppy, fumbling mess. Stoned sex is the exact opposite. It’s intense, tingly and intimate. Kind of like this.
4. We know how to see through lies and misinformation
The dangers of marijuana have been distorted and exaggerated for over a century, and we should be used to seeing through fear-based rhetoric. Gay sex, gay marriage and gay adoption have all been attacked with lies from those who oppose them. We know how to call a spade a spade. Nobody is saying it should be available to children, but free-thinking adults should have the opportunity to decide whether to puff or pass.
5. Because reality trumps prejudice
Gay rights have prospered by allowing the truth to speak for itself once the law begins to shift. We’re seeing that in full effect with gay marriage. Once the first wave of states began to legalize same-sex marriage, reality soon showed all the arguments against it to be false. Similarly, there has been no harm in states that have legalized medical marijuana, and everything appears to be going smoothly in Colorado and Washington, where recreational use has been approved.
Bonus: Because Barney Frank lays it all out so well: