Every pro-weed progressive makes the iron-clad case for legalizing marijuana: We're losing a bogus drug war that costs taxpayers billions. Pot is less damaging to humanity than alcohol, which we happily regulate and tax. Yada yada. Yada yada.
But if none of those arguments has swayed you, the news out of Ohio should.
A 17-year-old skateboarder named Tyler Pagenstecher was reportedly hauling in $20K a month as the leader of a $3 million drug ring that grew and sold high-grade super-sticky hydroponic greenbud, reports Cincinnati.com. This barely-out-of-diapers babyface was out-earning every working stiff in America because of a system that rewards those willing to illegally provide a service that will always, and forever, have demand. Believe in legalizing weed so the Tyler Pagenstechers of the world have to get real jobs. This entrepreneurial adolescent is exactly indicative of the problem — criminalization creates a market for those unafraid of the law. A market in which part-time gardeners live large while you bust your ass.
(By the way, we found this Twitter account of a guy with the same name in the same place who looks about 17.)
Forget beheadings in Mexico and gang violence in inner cities. Forget the overflowing American prisons clogged with unconscionable numbers of mostly-minority nonviolent criminals by a systematic racist roundup under laws fairly characterized as the New Jim Crow. If you need a reason to believe in legalization, make it that you're pissed off little pukes like Tyler Pagenstecher are living large while you break your back — all because it's politically incorrect to admit the obvious fact that keeping this plant contraband is absurd for a modern society.
This junior entrepreneur tapped a market that shouldn't exist. Take away the market and he's bagging groceries and carrying them to your car. If you don't relish the image of a pimply pimp counting his gold while you break rocks to to feed your family ... it's time to legalize.