Even a casual observer can see that much of the damage done in the US by illegal drugs is a result of the fact that they are illegal, not the fact that they are drugs. Vastly more lives are blighted by the brutality of prohibition, and by the enormous criminal networks it has created, than by the substances themselves. This is true of cocaine and heroin as well as of soft drugs such as marijuana. But the assault on consumption of marijuana sets the standard for the policy’s stupidity.The prohibition of drugs causes violent crime for the same reason the prohibition of alcohol did in the 1920s: When people can't resolve their disputes via the legal system, they tend to resolve them with violence instead.
Nearly half of all Americans say they have tried marijuana. That makes them criminals in the eyes of the law. Luckily, not all of them have been found out – but when one is grateful that most law-breakers go undetected, there is something wrong with the law.
Even our President has used illegal drugs and turned out O.K. Imagine how much worse his life would have turned out if he had been thrown in jail to punish him for harming himself. The prohibition of drugs is far more harmful than the drugs themselves.