This story was produced by The Chicago Bureau
A lot of political, medical and legal chatter is firing around the tricky issue of decriminalizing the possession of marijuana, regulating its sale or maintaining the status quo.
From Washington state, where it’s now legal to use, to Denver where they’re debating putting the drug on par with alcohol regulations, to Washington, D.C., where federal legislation to do something – anything – to create a nationwide approach or guide, it seems all are weighing in. Take doctors: Some say it’s unhealthy – addictive, even deadly; other physicians say it saves lives or at least makes the dying or suffering get through pain.
But despite a federal hard line against the drug, results from a recent poll show that the American public approves marijuana legalization 51 vs. 44 percent. And, as the below interactive graphic shows, approval rates largely depend on demographics. Click through to see what people of different stripes are feeling about the issue.
Take a special look at how opinion changes in different age groups. The results reflect how this is a particularly salient issue for youth, who often experiment with the drug and form the basis of much of the debate going on, and the laws that come out of this will govern the society they mature into.
And click here to read a take on the science of the issue.