Poll: Americans Favor Marijuana Legalization, Though With Serious Age And Gender Gaps


An interesting poll from Qunnipiac University shows majority support for marijuana legalization nationally, but also some deep divides on the issue between age groups and genders.

(CNSNews.com) – Americans favor the legalization of marijuana 51 to 44 percent, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday morning.

The poll showed a substantial gender and age gap on the issue:

— Men favored legalization 59 to 36 percent, but women opposed it, 52 to 44 percent.

— Americans 18 to 29 years old support legalization 67 to 29 percent, while those over 65 years oppose it, 56 to 35 percent.

— Respondents between 30 and 44 years old also support the idea of legalization, 58 to 39 percent, while Americans between 45 and 64 are more closely divided, 48 to 47 percent.

The poll noted that the racial split evident in American politics is “barely noticeable” on this question, as 50 percent of white voters and 57 percent of black voters favor legalization.

Probably evidence that, much like the gay marriage issue, American attitudes about this matter are headed inevitable change. The attitudes of younger Americans on this issue aren’t likely to change much over time. As they get older, and as those clinger to more prohibitionist attitudes die out, we’re going to see a major change on this issue.

Which is good. Prohibition of marijuana has accomplished little. Say what you want about using the drug – and I’m not for it, personally – but prohibition laws aren’t stopping anyone who wants to buy and use marijuana from getting it.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • SigFan

    Proving once again that even the majority can be wrong. Witness the reelection of Obama.

    • http://Sayanythingblog.com The Whistler

      My opinion is that while Marijuana use may be a bad thing for society that in order for something to be punished with criminal sanctions it has to be VERY bad. On balance I think that pot use doesn’t reach the level where our society has a compelling need to ban it.

      • SigFan

        I can’t see locking up people found guilty of simple possession either – in most cases they’re just young people doing what almost all young people do at some time in their lives – experimenting. A civil fine, perhaps harsher if driving under the influence but no hard time unless it’s DUI repeatedly just like alcohol. Large scale possession with intent to distribute is a different story though and it should be treated as a crime, just as bootleg booze is. The missing thing in these debates though is the moral hazard angle. If pot can be legal, why not cocaine, why not heroin, etc …

        The ancient Jews (and modern Orthodox Jews) developed a concept of hedges. Rules and customs that kept them from even getting close to violating the core law of the Ten Commandments. Did that mean that there weren’t people who did violate the Law – of course not. But the acceptable standards of society prevented more of the “bad” behavior and promoted “good” behavior. And as they modernized they fell further and further away from those standards, just as we as a society are doing today. The question is where does it lead and where does it end?

        • WackerTruck

          Because cocaine and heroin are both very physically addictive. Cocaine and heroin both also have a narrow therapeutic index and thus easily become lethal. There is a lot of evidence to backup those claims for cocaine and heroin, but no evidence to apply those traits to marijuana.

  • Roy_Bean

    I don’t want to control anyone’s habits or what they feel is enjoyable but I don’t want them to control me either. Some people want to drink to what I would consider excess and they want to smoke pot and I don’t care. I want to earn money and live in a warm house and have a few toys. If I don’t try to take away their drugs etc they shouldn’t try to tax away my money. On the other hand if they want to tax away my earnings because they don’t have any then I should be able to tell them to quit the drugs, sober up and get a job. It has to work both ways.

  • Thresherman

    If legalized, I wonder where they would be allowed to smoke it? Second hand pot smoke is worse the that of cigarettes as it is much higher in tars and since the health nazis have made nearly impossible to have a cigarette in public, one would have to believe the same laws would apply here. Additionally, since the law in ND prohibits cigar clubs the same would apply to those who would want to open establishments that would cater to the smoking of pot. Now they might try to promote edible forms, like pot brownies, but since they would be for commercial sale, health and production laws would have to be met and most likely FDA approval would be required.
    SInce anti-smoking laws and pot legalization are both products of the left, it would be amusing watching them twist and turn to reconcile the two.

    • RCND

      It’s worth legalizing just to see them have to go through those gyrations. They will also wrestle with the quandary of a spike in the consumption of junk food once legalized.

    • awfulorv

      Since smoke rises, why not build perches, similar to what a lifeguard sits on, and let them puff away to their lungs content. Unemployed youths could be started on the road to carpentry, and perhaps a job, by teaching them how to build the “Puffers”. The cost cost could, should, be borne by the pot sellers.

  • awfulorv

    Wonder why women opposed legalization? Could it be that, when high, a pot head is more into nodding , and less into wining, and dining, the ladies.

    • snarkie

      Did you pull your c**k out of a rentboy for what… 10 seconds to post that?


      • awfulorv

        When one spots, then identifies, what is beyond a doubt, a dollop of Hannitized Dog shit underfoot, what in the world would possess a sane human being to step in it?

  • WackerTruck

    Just legalize it, regulate it like booze, and tax it. There is no concrete evidence whatsoever, that cannot be refuted, that proves any real harm. If it is not legalized for consumption purposes, at least legalize it as just another plant. Instead of marigolds people could be able to grow marijuana in their gardens. Either way it is harmless. We already have prescription pills made of marijuana’s primary chemical. Tylenol, aspirin, and alcohol all kill people. Tobacco kills people. Marijuana has never killed anyone. Ever. Just some food for thought (no pun intended).

  • two_amber_lamps
  • yy4u2

    Here’s one person’s story: American Drug War…the last white hope http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CyuBuT_7I4
    Rob, I agree with your thoughts about prohibitionist attitude on mj legalization/decriminalization efforts. I will always disagree with your take on same sex ?. Society has given same sex couples the way to legally be tied together (no pun intended) with civil unions or to pass their belongings to others through legal documents (wills, trusts, etc). Not every church or faith follows that same sex marriage is right, and they certainly aren’t banning them to do what they want, they just don’t want them hijacking what has been, and should remain, rightfully theirs for centuries.
    What will the sexist courts do to two males that split yet have a child or children? Will the child/children be given custody to two females? Who will get alimony? How about if two women divorce? Where will the child/children go? What if one of them is the birth mother? What if the birth mother got impregnated from the other’s male friend’s sperm? Lord knows that now, the courts see fit that in no way, shape or form, will a child go to the husband unless the women gives them up or can’t publicly hide the multi-layers of insanity from the judge that probably caused the divorce in the first place. Which woman will get paid more? Will we need totally new divorce laws?

    • snarkie

      so you are a self-hating closeted fag. so what? move along folks, nothing to see here.

      • yy4u2

        Barkie once again tries to surpass the reading comprehension n cognitive skills of a toilet paper roll. And once again fails miserably. They still give medals to you or do you confiscate them from the other preschoolers?

  • Snarkie

    That means that, in short order, it will be legal.
    Now, about not putting people in jail for 10 years for selling $3 bags of crack…

    • Onslaught1066

      What’s it to you, your drug is glue.

      How’s your wife, still dead I hope.

  • Neiman

    Get it over with and legalize all drugs, you’ll need to be in a drug induced coma to bear the Judgment of God soon to fall upon this rotten earth.

    • snarkie

      OMG. Tell us what you think of modern society, dinosaur. Do you remember when they laid the cabkle across the atlintic? how pissed were you when they let women vote? or when our democracy was born… in 1965?

    • awfulorv

      Perhaps, just perhaps, this rotten earth might have been improved if you, and your ilk, had aided in Romney’s election. Alas! he did not read from the proper Jesus Bible to suit you, and yours. So we’re left to endure another four years of emerging Communism and, if we make it through his term, another four trillion, at least, added to our debt.

      • Neiman

        So you are suggesting we should violate our faith to elect the person better able to lead the country, right? So if it were a Hitler that DID improve Germany’s economy, that is the standard by which we cast our votes?

        • awfulorv

          Your reply, like it or not, reveals, as a cerebral map would, the sorely underdeveloped areas of your cranium, Neiman. It’s quite likely that, in your quest to memorize every period in your Holy book, you’ve left little space for rational thought to enter your brain. Comparing an accomplished human being, as Mitt Romney appears to be, exactly what the country needed BTW, to the obviously, strutting, power hungry despot that Hitler, even early on, showed himself to be, shows your obtuseness and lack of, basic, fairness, whenever Religion, as it always seems to be, is injected into your discussions. Odds are that, because of you, and your pious brethrens, refusal to vote for a good, honest, candidate, somewhere down the line your Holy book will be replaced with an updated version of the Communist Manifesto, your assigned reading henceforth, as per the directives of the greatest of two evils. A man who was elected through the simple expedient of millions of potential voters choosing to sit on their palms.

          • Neiman

            I’ll ignore your childish insults, they betray a very immature child.

            1. So, you are saying a Christian, despite their beliefs, should vote for an idolater if he might improve our economy and increase our prosperity? What kind of beliefs are they that can be sacrificed on the altar of material riches?
            2. You are assuming an idolater can be a good and honest man, while I think that despite outward appearances, his false religion bespeaks a dishonest man.
            3. So, you are suggesting that it is better to vote for the lesser of two evils? I believe Christians should not vote for evil at all, no matter how minor it appears, as evil always gets worse once approved.
            4. God, being outside time and space has seen the beginning to the end as one picture and the things He tells will happen have already all happened from His perspective.
            5. Christians are aliens here, we are citizens of heaven and the kingdom of God; and thus, what takes place here is beyond our power to control, all we can do is vote and act according to our Christian conscience as best we can, not taking into account what will result, only being faithful to God’s Word to the best of our ability.

            Surely, even one with your limitations can understand that it is the obligation of Christians to obey God and not man, no matter what the consequences appear to be; or, surely, we are empty in our faith and no better than non-believers.

          • http://realitybasedbob.sayanythingblog.com/ realitybasedbob

            Old Pal, what do your childish insults betray?

          • awfulorv

            Let me introduce another possible counter-point to what you’ve written Neiman. A possibility that seems to escape you, and other obligated Christians. That is that, despite the concrete, irrefutable, slam dunk, evidence, all round us that God has his hand on all things earthly, sarc. you may be, as I was with my UNC -11.5 vs Duke bet, earlier this year, flat assed wrong.

          • Neiman

            All the evidence is against you.

            Regardless, as long as I believe what I believe, then to vote as you suggest would be to dishonor my faith and my Lord. That is what you hate, anyone that stands with Christ without fear, favor or doubt.

          • awfulorv

            Don’t know what religious school you went to Neiman, a waste of money, to be sure, but there are many of us whose locus is centered on eradicating unabashed religious ignorance. We try to help the less astute unclog their religious arteries, as it were. To help them rid themselves, for example, of the urge to sever noses of pretty young girls, and women, a practice favored by our friends, the Muslims. The denying of un-baptised babies, who’ve expired, entrance into a, yet unproven, Heaven, a unique, courtesy of the Lutherans. The suffocating clouds of incense, and bizarre headgear worn by Catholic salesmen, salesladies not allowed to participate, naturally. The largest Guffaw a church has ever given me though, was the Pope, pontificating from a balcony to over a Half million semi starving Mexico City Peasants, denouncing the use of any, and all, birth control methods. In other words “let them be born, and if they starve while young, tough luck, it was Gods will”. That was a real Hoot, and typical of the illogical Liturgical Canons these gussied up frauds rule by, and which you, apparently, steadfastly defend.

          • Neiman

            The Lord told us that at this time in world history, just prior to His Judgment of all flesh on earth; the love even of Christians would wax cold, the rise of unbelievers (atheists/scoffers) would rise, your side would turn the world upside down, calling those things He called evil to be good and those things he calls good to be evil. So, eat, drink, be merry, fornicate your heart out, for your days are numbered and your punishment sure.

          • http://realitybasedbob.sayanythingblog.com/ realitybasedbob

            You’ll be standing flat footed waving up on that glorious day, Old Pal.
            God is love, getcha some before it’s too late.

          • Neiman

            You have rejected Christ, how do you plan on getting to heaven liar?

            You don’t get love – you get Christ, He is Love and you have not Christ and so have not any love at all.

          • awfulorv

            Lets pretend that we are neighbors and that my house has caught on fire. Isn’t there a passage in your Bible which instructs you to help your neighbor, even though he may not be of your faith, put out that fire? I’m sure there is. Voting to send packing a man, Obama, who is charitably, up to no good, would have been a way to help many of we neighbors out. Now confess your transgression in this matter, and pledge to vote the right way in the mid terms, and your neighbors may forgive you…And no backsliding into third partyism.

          • Neiman

            A Christian should not vote for evil, even a lesser evil, no matter the consequences.

          • awfulorv

            Tell us Neiman, how do you stand on allowing paroled rapists to occupy living quarters in the same building as an all girls school, if their religion is acceptable to you, that is? Or would you think it right to have the local chapter of NAMBLA escort a group of young boys on an extended camping trip if their religion, again, passes your muster? Or, since they are your Pastor Gantry’s foxes, allowing the same, into the hen house? That’s what you, and your ilk, have done, you know? You’ve allowed this fraud, and his Czars, back into the White House to foment, who knows what, during the coming years. And you have done so because he has, apparently, convinced you that his “Let’s All Hate The White Folks Church” befits your concept of what a Christian church should be, more so than the Church, the nearly exact man this nation needed to deal with the crisis before us, belongs to. The pity is that those who choose to think with such stupefying rigidity, coupled with their unalloyed pomposity, can do such, potential, harm to others as you, and the other, it is estimated, three million religious bigots, who withheld their votes from a Mormon, simply because he was a Mormon, have done. Shame on you, and the others.

          • Neiman

            I feel very bad about all those things, I would not like them to continue; but, in all honesty I cannot control these things, I can only vote my conscience. Or, would you have me sacrifice my conscience?

            Should we ask any man to set aside his private conscience in submission to the State or to anyone? Surely, all that can follow is chaos and ruin.

  • WOOF

    No smoke , no combustion, vapor.
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  • awfulorv

    If one can barely stomach looking at the before, and after, mugs shots of Meth addicts, who have ruined their lives through the use of that drug. One needs to remember, though, that nearly 100% of them would not be in such a state without the key that started their plunge to the depths, Marijuana.