On Nov. 2, Californians will be asked to vote on the legalization of the recreational use of marijuana as posed by Proposition 19.
Currently, in the state of California, marijuana use is only legal for those who have a serious illness and obtain a doctor’s recommendation to use medical marijuana, which is sold at medical marijuana dispensaries throughout the state. Prop 19 would allow all Californians aged 21 and above to legally consume marijuana for recreational purposes.
Mills students are generally in favor of passing Prop 19.
“I think I’m going to vote yes on it because I think by legalizing it there will be less criminal activity. And it has been shown that by legalizing it, it will be taxed which means more money for us,” said Morgane Bradley, junior at Mills College.
According to the California State Board of Equalization taxing marijuana could generate about $1.4 billion in revenue annually, which would help to close the states current $20 billion deficit meaning more funding for schools, parks, health care and jobs.
The proposition has been fiercely debated, not only by those who are morally for or against marijuana use, but also between medical marijuana patients, dispensaries, growers, and caregivers due to fears of marijuana prices rising, loss of revenue, according to the Cannabis Culture Marijuana Magazine.
One big question that institutions both public and private, like Mills College, are facing is how their rules in regards to marijuana consumption would be altered if Prop 19 were passed. Mills College is currently working on a policy for medical marijuana patients, though Proposition 215, which allows for people to use marijuana medically, was passed in 1996.
The Division of Student life is “working on a policy for medical marijuana because if this is their need we have to let them use it and we need to find out how we can support a student who has a need for medical marijuana” said Monique Young, Director of Residential Life.
It is still unknown what might happen at Mills College if Proposition 19 passes.
“We are discussing a policy with Jess miller, SDS, and Public Safety. The policy has to be vetted by the campuses’ legal counsel,” said Young.
Whether Prop 19 passes or not it seems that people, especially young people, want to change the stigmas surrounding marijuana.
“People are going to do it anyways,” said Sophmore Willoughby Smith. “So why not legalize it and all the hype will calm down about it. After awhile I think it will be as normal as alcohol and cigarettes.”