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      03-23-2016, 12:29 PM   #43

Drives: 09 335xi
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Northern Colorado

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Originally Posted by mPlasticDesign View Post
The reason why legalization in CO hasn't decreased the illegal market for marijuana is because government regulation has made it so expensive that it is still cheaper to get illegally. Your argument about alcohol being legal hasn't prevented alcohol related crimes is misguided. No on is arguing that making something legal will stop people from committing crimes. Making it legal will however remove the need for an underground illegal black market of criminals that peddle it. Prohibition is a perfect example. There is no mafia or drug cartel in the business of selling alcohol now is there?

The population has gone up 35%, while the prison population has gone up 800%, why is that so hard for you to understand there is zero correlation with the population increase. It's not even remotely proportional.

Public debt, illegal immigration, etc. are all moot points, because you can actually look at the statistics on why people are incarcerated.

Here are some facts:

46% nonviolent recidivists
"Violent crime was not responsible for the quadrupling of the incarcerated population in the United States from 1980 to 2003. Violent crime rates had been relatively constant or declining over those decades. The prison population was increased primarily by public policy changes causing more prison sentences and lengthening time served, e.g. through mandatory minimum sentencing, "three strikes" laws, and reductions in the availability of parole or early release. 49 percent of sentenced state inmates were held for violent offenses. Perhaps the single greatest force behind the growth of the prison population has been the national "War on Drugs." The number of incarcerated drug offenders has increased twelvefold since 1980. In 2000, 22 percent of those in federal and state prisons were convicted on drug charges."

Source: "Incarcerated America" Human Rights Watch (April 2003)
Source: United States Crime Rates 19602009. Source: FBI, Uniform Crime Reports.

To your 1st point, i can get an eighth on the street for $40-50, or at the store for $40-50 depending on the strain, and even as low at $30 on sale, so that is incorrect. The majority of the people i know do it because it is easier to go through their dealer than it is to go to a store, or they are buddies, or they are underage, etc. Street prices have stayed fairly consistent despite the increase of recreational stores. And if you have a medical card, you are looking at half those prices if not more of a discount. And those cards are extremely easy to get.

To your 2nd point, how can immigration and debt as well as population growth and other social and economic impacts not account for any of that growth of inmates? I know plenty of people that do drugs to escape the issues of their life, including compounding debt, so theres that.

Yes the mandatory minimums on drug offenses should be done away with, and that will help the prison population, but that doesnt negate the fact that people are still breaking the law. Drugs are becoming easier and easier to get, and law enforcement is continually trying to crack down on it more and more, so that is why you are seeing an increase.

The spike of Drug Crime % was the late 80s/early 90s, which was the beginning of the Anti Drug Campaigns. It has stayed fairly steady since then, while violent crime % is back on the rise again.