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  There are a number of reasons to support legalization. Now you can add one more.

 Farmers in the storied “Golden Triangle” region of Mexico’s Sinaloa state, which has produced the country’s most notorious gangsters and biggest marijuana harvests, say they are no longer planting the crop. Its wholesale price has collapsed in the past five years, from $100 per kilogram to less than $25.
   “It’s not worth it anymore,” said Rodrigo Silla, 50, a lifelong cannabis farmer who said he couldn’t remember the last time his family and others in their tiny hamlet gave up growing mota. “I wish the Americans would stop with this legalization.”
 Several of Mexico's states can be considered failed states because the drug cartels are out of control. The country of Mexico is in the warning status. One hitman for the cartels said he killed 800 people before he stopped keeping track.
   Denying those drug cartels cash would certainly be a step in the right direction.

 The gradual legalization of marijuana in the United States goes directly at the pocket of the cartels.

 “Is it hurting the cartels? Yes. The cartels are criminal organizations that were making as much as 35-40 percent of their income from marijuana,” Nelson said, “They aren’t able to move as much cannabis inside the US now.”
   In 2012, a study by the Mexican Competitiveness Institute found that US state legalization would cut into cartel business and take over about 30 percent of their market.
Now wouldn't you think that law enforcement would be jumping for joy over news like this?
 Of course our law enforcement has a different take. DEA chief of operations James Capra told senators this January that legalization "scares us" and is "reckless and irresponsible."

  Marijuana accounted for nearly half of all the drug arrests over the last 20 years.

   The militarized effort of winning the War on Some Drugs has completely failed. It's time to try something else.

  Minnesota is about to become the 19th state that will allow medical marijuana
 New York appears to be close to approving its own law soon.

 Alaska will vote this November on the full legalization issue. Polls are favorable.
   Florida will vote on the medical marijuana issue. Polls are favorable.

9:45 PM PT: Why does the DEA hate legalization? Maybe this is why.

 The DEA annually spends more than $2 billion to deter the transport of illicit drugs across the border. "So now we have both the DEA and cartel farmers screaming bloody murder about legalization," Downs points out. "Sounds like we're on the right track."

Mon May 19, 2014 at 1:49 PM PT: A couple people have objected to me leaving out the fact that one of the articles refers to the cartels switching from pot to heroin, and that they will simply change their "business model".
  I would like to point out that there are  60,000 daily users to 1 million occasional users of heroin.
   In comparison, there are between 22 million and 25 million marijuana users.
   There are 2.5 million medical marijuana users.
  Simple logic says that you can't extract as much consumption from a few hundred thousand people that you can from 20+ million people.

Originally posted to gjohnsit on Sun May 18, 2014 at 02:41 PM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Cannabis Law and Drug War Reform and Daily Kos Classics.

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