Maine marijuana bills foster debate
A set of bills that would decriminalize possession of up to six marijuana plants and remove criminal penalties for possession of up to five ounces of the drug recently sparked debate in Maine during a hearing, according to Boston.com.
Supporters of the bills included the Maine Civil Liberties Union and Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Both groups said during the hearing that law enforcement should focus their time on crimes such as robbery, car theft and rape, reported the news outlet.
Groups that opposed the bill, such as the Maine Prosecutors Association, said current laws regarding marijuana use promotes treatment and rehabilitation for needy individuals.
Currently, states such as Massachusetts have decriminalized marijuana, while states such as Oregon, Washington and Montana have approved it for medical use, according to USA Today.
Along with these new laws, the American opinion on marijuana use has also changed. According to the news outlet, in 1969, approximately 84 percent of Americans said the drug should be illegal, compared to only 54 percent in 2009.
Individuals who enroll in online criminal justice programs may learn about future laws regarding nation and statewide marijuana use.