Pubdate: Mon, 22 Dec 2008
Source: Anniston Star (AL)
Copyright: 2008 Consolidated Publishing
Author: Loretta Nall


Tax us, please

What a shame that Alabama students will be the first to suffer the
effects of the economic downturn when Alabama already has some of the
lowest per-pupil spending in the nation. According to the most recent
data that I can find, Alabama on average spends a little more than
$8,000 per student per year. Yet we spend a minimum of $13,000 per
year to lock up a non-violent resident for smoking pot.

Instead of making responsible adult cannabis consumers a burden on
state tax payers by forcing taxpayers to pay for incarceration, why
not regulate and tax marijuana like we do with alcohol and tobacco and
use the taxes collected to make our education system better? After
all, we use the taxes from the sale of alcohol to fund the Department
of Human Resources. There's a whole base of cannabis consumers in
Alabama who would be more than happy to be taxed in exchange for a
safe, regulated market.

Not only could we use the money raised in taxes for public education,
we could also use it for drug-prevention education and to fund
treatment for those addicted to harder drugs. It would be a superb
deal all the way around.

It's time to tap into the multi-billion dollar marijuana market in
this country and start reaping the many benefits available as opposed
to filling our prisons with people who don't belong there at the
expense of our children's education.

Tax us, please.

Loretta Nall

Alexander City
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