The Industries That Oppose Marijuana Legalization

Despite shifting attitudes and changing laws about cannabis, there remain people—and entire industries—that staunchly oppose marijuana legalization.

Joe Mabel/ Wikimedia Commons

Law Enforcement

Nothing has changed in terms of the police’s position on marijuana. Law enforcement continues to block cannabis at every turn and uses cheesy propaganda to maintain the status quo—after all, the War on Drugs has done wonders for police coffers. Besides providing generous budget funding at the state and local levels, prohibition continues to benefit law enforcement through asset-forfeiture programs in which seized property can be auctioned off for additional proceeds. Funds are often used to further the militarization of police forces around the country.

Brandon Giesbrecht/ Flickr

Big Pharma

Increasing, well-substantiated evidence of marijuana’s effectiveness for pain management has the pharmaceutical companies running scared. While some are attempting to integrate cannabis into pain-management products—much to the chagrin of whole-plant-medicine advocates—most companies would prefer the status quo. This prevails, despite the fact that the US life-expectancy average has recently dipped—a statistic that has been directly linked to opioid-overdose deaths skyrocketing into a domestic crisis. Big Pharma continues lobbying against cannabis with generous funding for anti-legalization campaigns.

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For-Profit Prisons

The privatization

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