Readers in favor of S.C. legalizing marijuana

Staff Report
Published June 12, 2014

potpollgraphicAn overwhelming majority of the 298 readers who responded to an online poll indicated they could support the legalization of marijuana in South Carolina.

The Charleston Regional Business Journal conducted the three-day online survey to take an unscientific snapshot of readers’ opinions after Gov. Nikki Haley and the General Assembly legalized the use of cannabis oil for treating severe epilepsy.

The question also came up recently when a candidate for state superintendent of education suggested that schools could benefit if marijuana were legal in South Carolina. Other states have recently implemented laws that allow for the legal consumption and production of marijuana, though it remains against federal law to do so.

A number of readers responding to the poll, which was highlighted in the Daily Journal digital publication, gave reasons why they thought legalization was a good or bad idea for the state. Some of the comments — complete comments are at the end of this report — included:

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“Not sure yet, but just buying it in a store seems wrong.”

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“Strictly as medication for pain management.”

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“I think there are true medical uses for marijuana.”

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“If regulated and taxed similar to tobacco.”

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“Distribution would be an issue. Private operations similar to liquor would likely be the answer for S.C., considering the politics and population of our state.”

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The poll also asked readers to say how they would spend tax dollars generated from legalization even if they did not support legalization. The Business Journal offered a long list of possible places the money could go and allowed readers to submit their own choices. Readers could pick as many or as few as they liked.

Readers submitted several suggestions, including using the money for prisons, income tax reduction, property tax relief and public transit. Two respondents were clearly on opposing sides:

“Send the money to Colorado to subsidize its drug industry. I want all the pot heads as far away from S.C. as they can be.”

“Use the money to promote legalized cannabis nationwide.”

How would you use tax money from legalized marijuana?

Nearly 300 readers responded to a poll about possibly supporting legalization of marijuana in South Carolina. Here are the top ways they would use the money.

Rank
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

Fund
Schools
Roads and bridges
Health care
Colleges (including scholarships)
Drug prevention programs
Technical schools
Law enforcement
Homeless
Children’s programs (Head Start)
Economic development

Readers
207
182
104
98
97
95
85
82
76
74

Source: Daily Journal online poll

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