The politics of pot : marijuana use and the potential for collective action.

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Marijuana and its legal status occupy a lengthy and controversial place in United States history. Penalties for marijuana use and distribution have increased in severity alongside the number of individuals who annually consume the drug. This has spurred skepticism regarding the effectiveness of prohibitive drug policy, especially when considering the harsh consequences that penalties place on individuals. To the dismay of the federal government, skepticism has manifested into political action by American state governments that have begun legalizing marijuana use for medicinal and recreational purposes. Using nationally representative data from the Baylor Religion Survey, I find marijuana users are more likely to publicly protest as well as attend political rallies than those who abstain from using. These findings hold true for public protest when separating the sample by political party identification. However, political rally attendance only shows significant relationships for marijuana users who describe themselves as politically independent.

Marijuana. Cannabis. Politics. Protest. Political action.