The Marijuana Legalization Movement

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The marijuana legalization movement is one of the most controversial social movements of the modern day. Efforts to reform marijuana policy have been organized since the mid 1900s. There are two major organizations leading the battle for marijuana decriminalization. The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) and the Marijuana Project Policy (MPP) are both looking to reschedule and eventually legalize marijuana for the use of responsible adults. These two organizations provide various strategies that, along with additional tactics from other sources, have strongly influenced the position of the marijuana legalization social movement. The mobilization of resources is strongly influenced by the two leading organizations…show more content…
Many celebrities publically advocate for the legalization of marijuana. Artists like Snoop Dogg, Justin Timberlake, John legend, and Madonna are just a few of the many in the music industry who advocate for the legalization of marijuana (Schiff 2014). These artists help the movement by maintaining a culture upon which the use of marijuana is “cool”. This promotion of marijuana by such celebrated people creates a sense of collective identity. “Historically, one of the most obvious means through which group identity has been manifested and shared is through language generally, and music specifically” (Danaher & Roscigno:26). Athletes like Michael Phelps, Allen Iverson, and Randy Moss advocate for the use of marijuana. Politicians like former president Bill Clinton, current president Barack Obama, and senator John McCain have all been very vocal about reforming the current marijuana policy. All these public influences help influence cultural outcomes that promote positive images surrounding marijuana. “Media coverage of SMOs is key to both substantiating their claims to represent groups and developing important cultural outcomes” (Goodwin & Jasper:312). Ultimately, public support of marijuana decriminalization from such important characters creates communal support and strengthens NGO campaign support. “To assert the media’s influence requires specifying the structural and instrumental ways in which it can shape collective action across a dispersed population. On the structure end, the introduction of new media may provide opportunities not directly associate with collective action, but which alter the leverage and/or autonomy of subgroups” (Danaher &
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