NPR Asks ‘What If Marijuana Were Legal?’

National Public Radio wants to know what America would be like if pot were legalized.

The US radio network asks the question in a recent radio broadcast, where it poses a hypothetical herb scenario to some marijuana ‘experts’.

NPR came up with a hypothetical scenario and asked experts to play along, commenting on their imagined outcomes. The scenario: Marijuana has been legal for two years throughout the U.S. It is treated, in the eyes of the law, similar to alcohol. It is taxed and regulated, and users must be 21 or older. Pot smokers can buy it by the gram at licensed dispensaries. Predictably, the law change would make some people very happy — and others deeply concerned.

Imagine if you turned on the radio and heard this: “From NPR News in Washington, I’m Carl Kasell. After 70 years of prohibition, marijuana becomes legal today for personal consumption throughout the United States for persons 21 and older …”

How would the world change if cannabis finally came out of the closet, if it were fully legal to possess, sell and cultivate?

Interviews include smokers, cannabis farmers, law enforcement and legal professionals, and Willie Nelson, who all play along as if pot was legalized and taxed. The 13-minute program is a dramatized look at the social and economic factors of ending prohibition, and discusses recreational and medicinal use and even Mexican gang violence. It also includes some drug-warrior propaganda about drug use increasing and being harder to control in a legalized environment.

Sadly, the narrator called the whole idea a “pipe dream” before the show ended. Despite this lame attempt to trivialize the issue (or just make a bad pun), the web survey featured with the online article and podcast (not scientific, of course) showed 90% of voters thought marijuana should be legalized. I guess there are a lot of dreamers out there.

Jeremiah Vandermeer
Jeremiah Vandermeer

Jeremiah Vandermeer is Cannabis Culture Chief of Operations and Editor of Cannabis Culture Magazine & Pot TV.